Goose isn’t even two yet, but he loves holding a paint brush. Since he just started saying egg, I knew we had to do Easter eggs this year. More importantly, I wanted to involve Father since he didn’t do eggs as a kid. Father is not a big fan of messy art projects, so painting the eggs with food coloring was out. So how to paint eggs without paint? Science.
Turmeric is a natural dye that is also an acid/base indicator. This means that it will change color when exposed to an acid or a base. We boiled the eggs with turmeric – which is sold in big bags at the Indian grocery for much less than the teeny bottles everywhere else – and a splash of vinegar. When the eggs were cooled and dried, they went into an egg box for painting. I mixed up some baking soda and water and brought Goose his paintbrush. The baking soda solution was basic, so the eggs changed color wherever he painted. This was exciting for everyone to watch! Grandmother was impressed that Goose could use the paintbrush, Father was happy to have a Goose on his lap and get to do a bit of painting too, and Mother was happy that the experiment worked.
The eggs were pretty well covered by the baking soda solution, so we painted them a second time with vinegar and changed some of the colors back. Then we put Goose down for a nap and hid the eggs outside. Finding the eggs was even more fun than painting them, and we ate them that evening in an egg curry. Yum!
Next year, we’ll do turmeric again and red cabbage too, which turns pink and blue! Have you used science lately with your kiddo? Tell us in the comments.