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How-To Plus Free Recording Sheet

You and your students are going to love the Egg and Vinegar Experiment. It’s an easy project you can complete in a few days, and it makes a good science fair experiment too. We asked 3rd grader Hazel from Baltimore, Maryland, to help us put this one to the test, and she did a great job. Be sure to check out her video for step-by-step instructions, and then keep reading to learn how to do the experiment on your own.

Also grab your free, printable Egg and Vinegar Experiment recording sheet when you fill out the form on this page.

How does the Egg and Vinegar Experiment work?

The Egg and Vinegar Experiment, also known as the “Naked Egg Experiment,” demonstrates osmosis. Placing an egg in vinegar triggers a reaction between the eggshell’s calcium carbonate and the vinegar’s acetic acid, producing carbon dioxide bubbles. As the acetic acid dissolves the eggshell over time, the semi-permeable membrane remains, permitting water molecules to enter via osmosis. This influx causes the egg to swell.

Check out this video tutorial of the experiment, featuring 3rd grader Hazel:

How do you do the experiment?

First, get your materials together.

You’ll need an egg, a graduated cylinder, and white vinegar.

Put your egg in the vinegar.

Put your egg in the vinegar

Pour white vinegar into a graduated cylinder. Fill it high enough so that your egg will be completely submerged. Gently add your egg.

Observe the egg.

Observe your egg

Keep an eye on it for a couple of days to notice the changes. Then after a few days, you can remove the egg from the graduated cylinder.

Examine the results.

See the results of the experiment.

Pour out the vinegar and give your egg a gentle rinse. You can try bouncing the egg. Also take time to look for the yolk inside.

Break the egg.

After you’re done examining the egg, try breaking it to find the yolk. This will also help you find the egg’s membrane.

What does the Egg and Vinegar Experiment teach?

This experiment teaches several important scientific concepts:

Osmosis

Students learn about the movement of water molecules across a semi-permeable membrane from an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration. In this case, water moves from the vinegar solution into the egg.

Chemical reactions

Students observe a chemical reaction between calcium carbonate (present in the eggshell) and acetic acid (present in the vinegar), leading to the dissolution of the eggshell.

Structure and function

By removing the eggshell, students can observe the structure and function of the egg’s semi-permeable membrane, which allows certain molecules to pass through while restricting others.

Experimental procedure

Students gain experience in following a step-by-step experimental procedure, making observations, and drawing conclusions based on their observations.

Can this experiment be done for a science fair?

Absolutely! The Egg and Vinegar Experiment is not only educational but also visually captivating, making it an excellent choice for a science fair project. Students can explore variations of the experiment by changing variables such as the concentration of vinegar, the duration of immersion, or the temperature of the vinegar solution. Additionally, they can research the scientific principles behind the experiment and present their findings in a clear and engaging manner. Overall, this experiment offers a hands-on opportunity for students to learn about osmosis and chemical reactions while showcasing their creativity and scientific inquiry skills at a science fair.

Get your free Egg and Vinegar Experiment recording sheet:

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