# Welcome To The Cake Lab!

Yeah, you read that right - CAKE! It's time to gather your little scientists and head to the "lab" for some sweet experimentation with this fun exercise from Jenae at I Can Teach My Child! {Jenae adapted the exercise from the Smithsonian Museum of American History's "Spark Lab" - an area for children that encourages creativity, inventions, and critical thinking}! While you won't be able to bake their creations in the classroom, you can certainly get to creating and mixing...

1. Start with the wonderful worksheets created by Jenae. The first is a "recipe card" including 4 columns for classifying ingredients - "Basics" {that must be added}, "Liquids", "Seasonings", and "Extras". Each column sports its own color so that students know what to do with the second printable {a list of various ingredients that are color-coded to denote if they are a basic, liquid, etc.}. Have students cut out the various ingredients, choose the ones they want to include {be sure to visit Jenae's full post to know how many of each/which ones are critical!}, and paste them into the proper columns.
2. Now you're ready to get your hands on the ingredients and start mixing! We suggest creating a classroom batch of basic batter. This most likely means that some students' recipes won't be followed to the letter {i.e. they'll have different liquids}. Settle liquid choices the "old fashioned way" with a math activity, creating a frequency chart that lists each liquid available and having students mark which ingredients they chose. Include in the classroom batter the two liquids that were chosen the most. Based on a lottery system {so it's impartial and fair}, have students take turns helping you measure out ingredients for the batter and stir it together. [NOTE: Jenae suggests looking at other recipes for ingredient estimates.] This done, measure out a hefty scoop of batter into small dishes - one for each student.
3. With recipes and dishes of newly mixed batter in hand, invite students to visit the "cake lab ingredient bar" and let the fun begin! Be sure to label each child's creation, cover tightly, and place in a refrigerated area. Take these home and scoop the batter into labeled cupcake/muffin liners to bake. In class the next day, invite your kiddos to try their creations and discuss the results! [NOTE: Send the recipes home with a note inviting students and their families to try them at home. This way, each student will be able to try their creation as intended - with the right liquids. If they've done this, invite your students to make comparisons.]

Head on over to I Can Teach My Child! for some fantastic pictures of the process, experiment printables, and lots of other great early childhood ideas!