It’s magic time!

Yasmin Jayathirtha

All of last year I have been writing, teachers have been teaching, and students have been learning chemistry. What use is it? Sure it is needed to pass the exam, it is needed to understand the world around you, it will be useful later on… But right now what can we do with what we have learnt? Well, we can put on a magic show! All the colour changes, all the bangs, (maybe not the stinks) will make a good display.

What do we need to put on a good show?

Experiments that are dramatic, safe, and which do not require special or expensive chemicals. They should also not require heating or many manipulations. Ideally, simple mixing experiments are the best for a show. I will outline a magic show put up by nine year olds for a year-end programme.

They had done a project on acids and bases and the show was the ideal end to their class. It also gave me a way to informally assess their learning by allowing them to choose chemicals and set up the sequence.

The author works with Centre for Learning, Bengaluru. She can be reached at

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