Where there’s smoke, there’s … bubbles!

Ever since she was 15, Dr. Kate Biberdorf knew that she wanted to be a chemist. Growing up in Michigan, she had a passionate teacher in high school who made chemistry so fun that Kate was inspired to pursue science as a career. She now goes by the name Kate the Chemist, traveling the country to show kids how cool science can be.

"You don't have to be a dork or a nerd to like science," she says. "You can just be a normal girl like me, who likes fire, dry ice, bubbles, and colors! That's all science." In this video, Kate shares more with you about how she became Kate the Chemist, along with an experiment that involves lots of—you guessed it—dry ice, bubbles, and colors.

When you try this experiment at home (kids should always conduct experiments under a grown-up’s supervision, of course), you’ll understand why Kate believes that anyone, anywhere can be a scientist. You'll learn about gases, liquids, something called sublimation… and best of all, you'll create some the craziest bubbles you've ever seen.

If you want to do more activities like this, check out Kate's Big Book of Experiments, which has 24 more experiments you can do at home. She also has a Kate the Chemist novel called Dragons vs. Unicorns, which is about a 10-year-old girl who is the neighborhood problem solver (using science, of course).

What you'll need:

  • Safety glasses and a protective glove
  • An empty plastic soda bottle filled halfway with water
  • A funnel
  • A length of plastic tubing to fit around the end of the funnel
  • Duct tape
  • Scissors or a knife that’s sharp enough to cut through the soda bottle's top
  • A bowl with dish soap or bubble bath in it
  • Dry ice (often available at grocery stores)
  • Universal indicator solution (optional)

Virtual Kids Week activities are intended for children with involvement from a parent or guardian.