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Combustion of ethanol in a jug

Burn ethanol in a jug to make a blue flame and a sound.
Science content (2016 curriculum): 
Chemistry: Chemical Changes (2, 7)
Physics: Energy forms, Conservation of Energy (1, 3, 4, 5)
Lessons activity is in: 
  • large heat proof flask or jug
  • 95% ethanol
  • long handled lighter
  • safety goggles and a good distance between the activity and students

Add a little ethanol to the jug.
Swirl it around to coat the sides and evaporate into the volume of the flask.
Ignite at the top.

Discuss the chemistry of the reaction:
ethanol + oxygen -> water and CO2
Model the chemistry of the combustion reaction

Grades taught: 
Gr 4
Gr 5
Teaching site: 
ingridscience afterschool
Activity originally developed and delivered: 

ingridscience afterschool