er Mom tried to talk her out of it. Her two older sisters were skeptical.
They even walked her through a website called sciencebuddies.org that helps children find their most perfect science project based on their interests, whether they are male or female and, most importantly, how much time they have – like, I need this project tomorrow!
But 7-year-old Sarah Hastings knew she “just wanted to make lollipops” for her science project at the Dallas Elementary School and that she has until March 7 to finish it.
So the Back Mountain munchkin started gathering material and the annual science project began.
She bought candy sticks, sugar, cream of tartar, corn syrup liquid, food coloring and borrowed a large metal candy thermometer from the Dallas High School cheerleaders, who always make their own lollipops.
Then she bought the final ingredient - flavor drops.
“I don’t like fruit but strawberry sort of would be my favorite,” Sarah said. “Hey, it’s all liquid, right?”
Sarah mixed and stirred, planning on three experimental batches.
“My arms and hands got tired from the stirring,” Sarah said, easily engaging the help from her mother, Allison, and her two older sisters, Emma and Abby.
There were so many questions, though
“How do I know when the sugar is dissolved and what does ‘hard crack’ mean and why does it have to be sooooo…. hot?” every one involved asked. After all, this was the first time any of them had ever made lollipops.
We could make cookie dough instead and carve out the letters ‘Science’ and then we could all eat science,” Sarah quipped.
After what seemed like an eternity, the batch reached a smoky 300 degrees and the strong flavoring was added. There was hope that the lollipops would really taste like strawberry and that the family sauce pan would survive, too.
“Putting in the sticks and mixing were my favorite part,” Sarah said. Abby noted that the lollipops tasted like “burnt cough drops” and wondered if children at the school would eat the somewhat ‘burnt offerings” during the science fair.
Like all good scientists, the trio agreed another batch was needed - this one with quality control in the name of science. And that was just fine with the girls and their mother.