Density Experiment

I was asked by our favorite children’s librarian this week to review a book for her and let her know what I thought.  The book is I’m a Scientist: Kitchen by Lisa Burke.  I looked through it and found that it had a few good activities that I wanted to try, but overall I found it to be a good book, but not a resource that I would want to buy.  It really only has about fifteen different experiments in it, but they are all well photographed and made really interesting for kids to want to delve in to and try out themselves.

Yesterday we had a bit of free time (probably due to the extra hour in our day!) and Clara and I decided to try one of the experiments out.  We did one on density, and I have to say, it was a huge hit!  We may have to try out more of these experiments.  Here’s what we did.
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I gathered some supplies:

  • A plastic bottle
  • vegetable oil
  • corn syrup
  • food coloring
  • a funnel
  • some water
  • various small objects (not pictured)

First we poured the corn syrup into the bottle through the funnel.  We noted that it went really slowly and was very thick.  Next we added the water with a bit of blue food coloring in it.  Then we added the oil to to top.  We discussed why they were in layers rather than all mixed together.

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Then we added various objects and noticed if they floated or sank and if they floated, in which layer they floated. Some of the objects we added included a key, a penny, a little rubber snake, a little skeleton eraser, and a pretend spider.
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Then at the very end, we just had to shake the bottle. We noted that while the oil would not mix with the water, after a while, the syrup and the water were able to combine.

The girls were both thrilled with this experiment and we had everything on had to do it. So, overall, I would say that makes this one a hit!
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1 Response to “Density Experiment”


  1. 1 Karen November 7, 2011 at 9:37 pm

    Looks like a hit to me!! Good idea.


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