These leafy science experiments will keep kids busy this fall

Bonus: They double as art projects!

“Why do leaves change color?”

It’s a question parents might dread more than “Why is the sky blue?” But the answer will not only make you look like a genius, it’ll inspire curiosity, outdoor exploration, and scientific discovery in your child. And when combined with fun leaf activities, kids can develop their creative muscles as well.

Plants produce green, yellow, red, and orange pigments in their leaves. The green pigment is called chlorophyll. In the spring and summer, plants produce a lot of it to capture energy from the sun to produce food. (You remember photosynthesis from eighth grade, right?) Other pigments also help with photosynthesis, but there’s so much chlorophyll that you can’t see those colors.

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