Spit Test

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In this biology activity (page 8 of the PDF), learners will explore how saliva assists in the beginning of the digestive process. By comparing chewed and unchewed crackers, they will see first hand that saliva changes the starch in food into sugar. Although this activity was included as a post-vist for a workshop about the human body, it also makes an excellent stand alone activity!

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity


Materials List (per student)

  • Spoonful of cornstarch
  • Two crackers (preferably unsalted)
  • Tincture of iodine (you can buy this at the drug store in the first aid section)
  • Two glass bowls or small cups


  • Life Sciences
    • Human Body
      • Digestion
  • Physical Sciences
    • Chemistry
      • Chemical Reactions
      • Chemistry of Life

Informal Categories

  • Food and Cooking


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • see color
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, COSI Columbus, 2009