30 Impressive 4th Grade Science Experiments and Activities

Because you’ve always wanted to try the Mentos and diet soda experiment.

Albert Einstein famously noted that education was not about learning facts, but rather about training the mind to think. We believe he would approve of these hands-on 4th grade science experiments, where kids explore and learn about biology, chemistry, physics and much more. Get them actively involved in these impressive experiments, as that’s the way kids learn best!

1. Erupt a lemon volcano.

Early chemistry experiments with acids and bases are always a lot of fun. This one uses the natural acids of lemon juice and adds a little food coloring to up the wow factor.

Learn more: STEAM Powered Family

2. Build a hovercraft.

4th Grade Science Experiments Hovercraft Educationcom

It’s not exactly the same model the military uses, but this simple hovercraft is a lot easier to build. An old CD and a balloon help demonstrate air pressure and friction in this fun fourth-grade science experiment.

Learn More: Education.com

3. Learn about capillary action.

4th Grade Science Experiments Capillary 123Homeschool4Me

Kids will be amazed as they watch the colored water move from glass to glass, and you’ll love the easy and inexpensive set-up. Gather some water, paper towels, and food coloring to teach the scientific magic of capillary action.

Learn More: 123 Homeschool 4 Me

4. Make a wigglebot.

4th Grade Science Experiments Wigglebot Research Parent

Who knew electricity could be so adorable? Explore the science behind batteries and motors by creating a simple “wigglebot.” Experiment with weights to throw the motor off balance and create fun designs.

Learn More: Research Parent

5. Find out if mood rings really work.

Apply the rigors of the scientific method to mood rings! Find out what makes mood rings change color, then see if they really reflect a person’s mood.

Learn more: Education.com

6. Construct a working flashlight.

4th Grade Science Experiments Flashlights MysteryScience

You’ll only need a few supplies to guide your students in building their own LED flashlights. They’ll learn how electricity travels and the way circuits work. The slideshow available through the link makes this lesson a breeze for teachers, too.

Learn More: MysteryScience

7. Grow crystal names.

4th Grade Science Experiments Crystals Playdough to Plato

No list of 4th grade science experiments would be complete without crystals! Kids of all ages love growing crystals, making this an ideal way to learn about supersaturated solutions. The classic experiment gets a new twist when you have kids shape pipe cleaners into their own names first. 

Learn More: Playdough to Plato 

8. Brew elephant toothpaste.

4th Grade Science Experiments Elephant Toothpaste Science Bob

OK, this isn’t really what elephants use to brush their teeth, but this big foamy exothermic reaction needs a big name! Wow your class using simple materials including dish soap, hydrogen peroxide, and a packet of yeast.

Learn More: Science Bob

9. Mine for chocolate chips.

If you’re learning about mineral resources, this quick hands-on activity is an interesting way to explore the effects of mining. Kids have two minutes to find as many chocolate chips as they can in a cookie. Will they smash it up and destroy it entirely? Pick them out one by one? This experiment can lead to intriguing discussions.

Learn more: Sarah’s STEM Stuff

10. Become human sundials.

4th Grade Science Experiments Sundials Scholastic

Choose a sunny day and grab some sidewalk chalk—your students are about to become sundials! They’ll practice measuring skills and learn about the movement of the sun across the sky.

Learn More: Scholastic

11. Assemble an edible DNA model.

4th Grade Science Experiments DNA wikiHow

Use licorice sticks, four different colored candies or fruits, and toothpicks to build an edible strand of DNA. Learn about chemical bonds and the helix shape, then eat your creation!

Learn More: wikiHow

12. Layer an edible soil model.

4th Grade Science Experiments Soil Super Teacher Blog

Digging in the dirt is fun, but it’s even more fun when you can eat the dirt when you’re done! Create edible soil layer models, complete with gummy worms, for a simple earth science project. (Find more edible science projects here.)

Learn More: Super Teacher Blog

13. Test Sharpie solubility.

Find out if Sharpie markers are really permanent with this 4th grade science activity that uses the scientific method to explore solutes and solvents.

Learn more: Around the Kampfire

14. Create a smartphone projector.

4th Grade Science Experiments Projector STEM Laboratory

No projector in your classroom yet? No problem! Have your students help you construct one for your smartphone using just a cardboard box and large magnifying glass. They’ll learn about convex lenses and how the brain processes images too.

Learn More: The STEM Laboratory

15. Engineer a pulley system.

4th Grade Science Experiments Pulleys 123 Homeschool 4 Me

The science of machines never fails to fascinate kids. In this experiment, they’ll design their own pulley system to make it easier to lift an object.

Learn More: 123 Homeschool 4 Me

16. Discover a density rainbow.

4th Grade Science Experiments Density Steve Spangler Science

Colorful, simple, and impressive: it’s the trifecta of 4th grade science experiments! Wow your students by layering colored sugar water as you learn about density, adhesion, and cohesion.

Learn More: Steve Spangler Science

17. Design a working elevator.

Engineering activities make for amazing hands-on learning. Challenge your students to build an elevator that can safely lift a certain amount of weight.

Learn more: Teachers Are Terrific

18. Turn a penny green.

4th Grade Science Experiments Pennies Buggy and Buddy

Experiment with simple chemical reactions as you turn pennies green using vinegar. Don’t forget to tell them that the Statue of Liberty is green because of the very same reasons.

Learn More: Buggy and Buddy

19. Transform milk into plastic.

4th Grade Science Experiments Milk Plastic Science Buddies

Plastic seems incredibly modern, but people have been making casein plastic from milk for centuries. In this science project, students experiment to create the formula for the best milk plastic. They’ll be amazed at the results!

Learn More: Science Buddies

20. Use marshmallows to explore Boyle’s Law.

Seeing Boyle’s Law (which relates pressure and volume of gasses) in action makes it a little easier to understand and remember. This simple 4th grade science experiment uses marshmallows to make a great visual.

Learn more: Hojo’s Teaching Adventures

21. Grow bacteria in petri dishes.

4th Grade Science Experiments Petri Steve Spangler

Your students will truly feel like scientists when they perform this classic experiment. They’ll prep the dishes with agar, swab different surfaces, and see what bacteria they grow. It’s gross science, but also easy and impressive.

Learn More: Steve Spangler Science

22. Create a new plant or animal.

4th Grade Science Plant Animal I Love 2 Teach

Kids will really get into this project, indulging their creativity as they invent a plant or animal that’s never been seen before. They’ll need to be able to explain the biology behind it all, though, making this an in-depth project you can tailor to any class.

Learn More: I Love 2 Teach

23. Form ocean currents.

4th Grade Science Experiments Currents Life Over Cs

Learning about oceanography? Demonstrate how ocean currents form using warm and cold water (and a few plastic sea creatures for extra fun!). 

Learn More: Life Over C’s

24. Understand the impact of non-renewable resources.

This is a neat Earth Day activity. Discuss the differences between renewable and non-renewable resources, then have your class form “companies” to “mine” non-renewable resources. As they compete, they’ll see how quickly the resources are used. It’s a great tie-in to energy conservation discussions.

Learn more: The Owl Teacher

25. Explode a Mentos geyser.

4th Grade Science Experiments Mentos Steve Spangler

Here’s another classic for the 4th grade science experiments list: diet soda and Mentos! Everything you’ve heard about this experiment is true, so choose an outdoor location and get ready to make an enormous mess as you explore nucleation.

Learn More: Steve Spangler Science

26. Investigate decomposition.

4th Grade Science Experiments Mold MysteryScience

Yup, it’s gross… so your kids will love it! Seal food items in a plastic bag and experiment to see what factors affect their decomposition, helped along by a heaping helping of mold.

Learn More: Mystery Science

27. Explore blood components.

Use simple kitchen supplies to create a jar full of “blood” that includes plasma, platelets, red blood cells, and white blood cells. (You can even snack on the blood cells along the way!)

Learn More: Almost Supermom

28. Watch gravity beads prove Newton’s Laws.

You’ll need a loooooooong string of beads for this experiment. Make your own by taping dollar store strings together, or buy a long bead garland. Pile them in a cup and start the beads going; it’s fascinating to watch inertia and gravity at work.

Learn more: Teach Beside Me

29. Make a model seismometer.

Explore the science of seismology and learn how scientists study earthquakes and their effects. This model seismometer is easy to build and fun to experiment with.

Learn more: Science Sparks

30. Conduct an egg drop.

4th Grade Science Experiments Egg Drop Buggy and Buddy

Here’s one more classic to round out our list of 4th grade science experiments: the egg drop! The great thing about this project is that kids can do it at any age, with different materials and heights to mix it up. Hit the link below to get an egg drop project designed just for 4th graders.

Learn More: Buggy and Buddy

Can’t get enough STEAM? Check out our roundups of science experiments for every grade level K-8.

We bet you’ll also like this collection of 21 Fantastic and Free Fourth Grade Math Games.

30 Impressive 4th Grade Science Experiments and Activities

Posted by Jill Staake

Jill Staake is a writer living in Tampa, Florida. She's spent most of her life teaching in traditional classrooms and beyond, from 8th grade English to butterfly encounters, and believes learning is a life-long process.

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