MnSTEP Teaching Activity Collection > MnSTEP Activities > Chemical Reactions and Pancakes

Chemical Reactions and Pancakes

Krista Seifert
Valentine Hills Elementary
Arden Hills, MN
Based on an activity from "Teaching Science With Picture Books" pages 79-83
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Summary

In this lesson, students will hear a story about the ingredients that go into pancakes called, "Pancakes, Pancakes!" by Eric Carle. We will then discuss preference of light and fluffy vs. flat and rubbery pancakes. Students will compare ingredients in two different pancake recipes, then taste the difference. We will talk about the chemical reaction that happened when the recipes are mixed and why there are bubbles in the pancakes.

Learning Goals

This activity is designed for students to:
· Observe a chemical reaction between an acid (vinegar) and a base (baking soda) that creates bubbles to make the pancakes light and fluffy.
· Compare a list of ingredients to figure out which ingredients cause the reaction.
· Describe changes that occur while the pancakes are cooking.

Concepts: Some combinations of ingredients in recipes cause chemical reactions.
-Physical changes are different that chemical changes.

Vocabulary:
Carbon dioxide
Ingredients
Acid
Base
Chemical change

Context for Use

In first grade, we used Houghton-Mifflin reading curriculum. There is a story in the anthology called "If You Give a Pig a Pancake" by Laura Joffe. I would tie this lesson into this theme/story. I am not sure how long this lesson will take. I will need to bring in my electric griddle to cook the pancakes on. I also need to think about the most effective set-up for this lesson to make sure all students can see what is going on. I think that having a volunteer that day would be helpful.

Subject: Chemistry:General Chemistry:Chemical Reactions, Chemistry:General Chemistry,
Resource Type: Activities:Classroom Activity
Grade Level: Primary (K-2)

Description and Teaching Materials

I found this lesson in the book: Teaching Science with Favorite Picture Books by Ann Flagg, Mary Orv and Teri Ory. The picture book being read is "Pancakes, Pancakes!" by Eric Carle
1. Introduce the word pancake as a compound word. Discuss how the two words make up the meaning.
2. Ask who likes light and fluffy or flat and rubbery pancakes. Talk about how adding different ingredients can change the final product.
3. Read the story: have the students listen for ingredients that go into Jack's pancakes.
4. Make the two batches of pancakes so students can observe and taste the difference between the two recipes. (Both with and without the chemical reaction)
5. Have two charts up; one for Jack's pancakes and one for the science pancakes. Divide each into three sections: "batter," "cooking," and "cooked."
6. As Jack's pancakes are being made have students describe the mixture in its three stages. Record their observations on the charts. Have students sample ¼ of a pancake.
7. Do the same with the science pancake recipe.
8. Have the students compare the two recipes and identify any ingredients that are in one recipe and not the other. (Focus more on the type of ingredient and not the amount of the ingredient.)
9. Discuss that the vinegar and baking soda produced a chemical reaction that caused the bubbles thus making the pancakes light and fluffy.
Materials:
· Book: Pancakes, Pancakes! By Eric Carle
· Chart paper
· Pancake ingredients (check recipes below)
· 2 mixing bowels
· Mixing spoon
· Electric skillet
· Cooking spray
· Spatula

Jack's Pancakes
1 cup flour
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons sugar
1 cup milk
1 egg
¼ cup butter (softened)

Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Place the wet ingredients in another bowl and mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix. Pour pancake batter in a hot greased skillet ( a few spoonfuls for each pancake) and cook over medium heat. Flip pancakes when bubbles form around the edges.

Science Pancakes
2 cups flour
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs
¼ cup vinegar
1 ¾ cups milk
¼ cup butter (softened)

Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Place the wet ingredients in another bowl and mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix. Pour pancake batter in a hot greased skillet ( a few spoonfuls for each pancake) and cook over medium heat. Flip pancakes when bubbles form around the edges.

Teaching Notes and Tips

I have not taught this lesson before, but there are a few things that I plan on keeping in mind when I do this year.
1.Plan on having a volunteer that day- with first graders who are very busy it will help to have someone writing observations while I am cooking the pancakes.
2.Figure out a safe way to cook the pancakes so that all of the students can see them cooking, but not be in danger of getting hit by oil or touching the skillet.
3.Make the recipes before I teach the lesson to make sure I see what I want the students to be looking for.

Assessment

For this lesson I would not assess each child individually. I would be assessing the children's contributions to the discussions.

Standards

GRADE 1
II. PHYSICAL SCIENCE
A. Structure of Matter
The student will understand that objects have physical properties.
1. The student will describe objects in terms of color, size, shape, weight, texture, flexibility and attraction to magnets.

References and Resources

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