Super Secret Disappearing Ink

Good morning scientists! My little scientist and I just finished up the exciting Super Secret Disappearing Ink Investigation. Can you keep a secret? Of course you can! Try this super fun experiment with your little scientist.

Materials

Lemon

Paintbrush

Plain Printer Paper

Stove top (Adults Only)

Cutting Board and Knife (Adults Only)

Container (To hold juice)

Fire Extinguisher (Just in Case)

Optional: Juicer

Recommended: Safety Goggles and Waterproof Shirt or Apron

Investigation

**WARNING This Investigation Uses Heat, Follow all Safety Guidelines, Use EXTREME Caution, Read ALL of the Investigation steps before starting**

**A note from experience: the first time we tried this investigation we used a blow drier. It was not hot enough to reveal our secret artwork.**

  1. ADULTS ONLY, USE CAUTION: Cut the lemon in halfSuper Secret Disappearing Ink (6)
  2. Juice your lemon with your juicer (If you don’t have a juicer you can squeeze the lemon juice into a container by using the back of a large spoon or squeezing the lemon halves with your hand). **Be careful with the lemon juice, it stings if it gets in your eyes**Super Secret Disappearing Ink (10)
  3. Have your little scientist do some artwork on the plain printer paper using the lemon juice and paintbrushSuper Secret Disappearing Ink (12)
  4. Patience! Let your artwork dry completely
  5. ADULTS ONLY, USE EXTREME CAUTION **Do not overheat artwork paper or touch heat source.  Never touch a hot stove top, light bulb, or burner. Make sure clothing is not loose or dangling. Do not let your child do this step.**: Turn the stove top on high letting it heat up then turn it off. Hold the artwork several inches above the off burner.  Remove artwork paper and repeat process until artwork appears OR Try holding the artwork a few inches from a light bulb that is on (LEDs do not work). Remove paper from heat source when it shows back up.
  6. Show your little scientist their super secret artwork! 🙂

Talking Points

In this investigation the lemon juice disappeared when the paper was completely dry, but reappeared when heated up. This happened because a chemical reaction took place. A chemical reaction occurs when you have one or more substances reacting with one another to make a new substance or substances. This is also described as a chemical change, when the substance reacts with the right chemical and is changed completely and can not be changed back. For example, if you burn toast you can never make the toast regular bread again. Lemons are an acid, pH less then 7. This is why lemons have a sour taste. When you heat up the lemon juice a chemical change occurs causing it to turn brown. This lets you see the artwork or message that was created.

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