Kitchen K-Mistry

Use these short podcasts to introduce children to the chemistry they can find all around them in the kitchen

FunKids Radio and the RSC have teamed up again, and chemistry superhero K-Mistry has returned! An engaging set of resources to spark an interest in real-world chemistry.

Kitchen K-mistry


Learn about bacteria and fungi, including yeast, as examples of micro-organisms that are alive. Introduces the fact that bacteria play many roles in our everyday lives; children will be able to give examples, including bread and cheese making.

Beat it

Learn about ‘reversible’ and ‘irreversible changes’, and that heat is not always required for a substance to change state. Being able to recognise the difference between chemical reaction and state changes.

Big freeze!

Learn that bacteria are alive and are responsible for why foods spoil, and how lowering the temperature reduces the activity of bacteria, but doesn’t kill them

Colourful food

Explore how different colours are made by mixing primary paints or pigments together to form secondary colours. Investigate separating colours from sweets or pens using chromatography. How foods get their colour; that some are natural and some are synthetic.

Dense liquids

Discover what is meant by the term ‘density’ and that different liquids can have different densities.


Get students researching components of different foods, such as iron, calcium and carbohydrates, and how these provide nutrition for the body, e.g. calcium for teeth and bones.

Hubble bubble

Define what is meant by the terms solids, liquids, gases and changes of state. Also the terms ‘reversible change’ and ‘irreversible change’. Demonstrating the properties of the different states of matter, and how reversible/irreversible changes have roles in our everyday lives, including in the kitchen.


Explore the process of jelly making, to reinforce ideas about dissolving and chemical change, and investigate the best method to make a perfect dessert

Low fat

Looking at diets and healthy eating: children could explore the food pyramid, what a balanced diet is and why we need one, and they could explore which foods belong to which food group

Mixed up

What is meant by the terms ‘solution’ and ‘mixture’? Define the different types of mixtures, including solid-solid, liquid-liquid, and solid-liquid and the different separation techniques suitable for separating these mixtures.


There are methods to slow the process of decomposition. These processes don’t kill the bacteria, but either prevent them growing in the first place or slow the rate of decomposition by reducing the activity of the bacteria. Food will still decompose eventually, but at a much slower rate.


Learn that food decomposes, and that living bacteria are largely responsible. Investigate how/why different foods decompose at different rates.


When salt dissolves in water a salt solution called brine is formed, it can be used to preserve food. Salt also affects the freezing point of water, which is why it is used to prevent ice forming on roads.

Sensational states

Explore different materials, and then group them accordingly. Look at what happens to some materials when they are heated or cooled and describe these processes in terms of changing states, using accurate scientific language.

Something smells

Identify, name, draw and label the basic parts of the human body and say which part of the body is associated with each sense

Sweet and sour

FunKids Radio and the RSC have teamed up again, and chemistry superhero K-Mistry has returned to introduce children to the chemistry they can find all around them, in their kitchen!


Identify and compare the suitability of a variety of everyday materials, including wood, metal, plastic, glass, brick, rock, paper and cardboard for particular uses. In particular, this introduces the excisting propeties of Teflon.

Turn up the heat

Define what is meant by the terms reversible and irreversible changes, and be able to identify these changes. Why some changes are irreversible, escpecially in relation to heat!


Students learn that in the acid-carbonate reaction, the powder disappearing is not like the process of dissolving. Here it has been changed into a new material and cannot be recovered. Acidic substances are all around and that they can affect the human body as well as the environment.


Show that some substances can be dissolved in liquids, and that they don’t ‘disappear’; water often contains dissolved minerals, such as sodium and fluoride. Solids can be recovered from a solution using evaporation. Water can change state and this process is reversible, for example ice and water are chemically the same, and that ice is water in a different state of matter.