ACS Kids Day Activities

ACS is dedicated to sharing chemistry with the world. From hands-on stations to explosive demonstrations, ACS Kids Day is chock-full of activities that make science fun and engaging for kids.

Give 'em a Hand!

The kids painted, bounced, and stomped their way through the morning at 7 hands-on activity stations.

Glow It Up!

Children combined luminol, florescent dye from a highlighter, and drops of an oxidizer solution to experience chemiluminescence in a cup.

Self-Inflating Balloons

Kids learned that a chemical reaction between citric acid and baking soda inflates these special balloons. After activating the balloons, by stomping on them, the kids also listened to and felt the chemical reaction as it happened. 

Indicator Alligator

Children painted the “indigator” with a green universal indicator solution. Then they experienced surprising color changes as they painted with a variety clear colorless solutions. Thanks to a chart, they could then classify each of these colorless solutions as either an acid or a base.


There is something special about thin colorless films between 400 and 700 nm thick—they appear incredibly colorful. Presenters created and then captured a thin film on a bookmark for each child.

Glitter Slime

This long-standing favorite delighted children and parents alike. Using an ingredient from glue (PVA) and an ingredient from the laundry aisle (borax) children made their own squishy toy. No matter how many times you have done it, there is something wonderful about crosslinking a polymer!

Bouncing Ball

Crosslinking a polymer scores again; this time resulting in a brightly colored bouncing ball.

Fickle Floaters

Shake this up and your beads will mix, separate by color (density), more towards one another, and then finally layer themselves one on top of the other. It’s not so much the beads, but the fact that alcohol and saltwater don’t mix.

It's FUN Being Green!

In the afternoon, children were treated to a lesson on green chemistry presented by Beyond Benign. Green Chemistry Conference attendees led a bio-mimicry game and an activity making “green” glue. Children then tested their glue as they made green chemistry collages with paper brochures and posters rescued from the recycle bin.

Moles in the Hole!

Children had their photo taken with Professor Molenium.

The “Mole Team”, as they called themselves, was made up of 3 interns: Annabeth Garrett, David Fillinich, and Michael Dunn.


The day ended with a bang thanks to Blake Aronson’s hydrogen rocket and the Mentos and Diet Coke send-off.

ACS Kids Day is a Staff Council event. Staff council members, Kelen Fureigh and Patricia Galvan chaired the planning committee with many new and several veteran volunteers from across ACS. By having this event in conjunction with the Green Chemistry Conference, the children of ACS staff were able to take advantage of both ACS annual events for kids!

Sunny (D’Jenne) Smith

Two interns who led activities and assisted throughout this event attended ACS Kids Day back when they were children.

  • Katharine Smorodin (Dave Smorodin’s daughter)
  • Sunny (D’Jenne) Smith (Semora Smith’s daughter)