What happens when you mix oil and water together? Which is denser, oil or water? These are just some few questions that can be asked and hypothesized with kids (can be tried with older toddlers) while performing this quick and easy “water & oil” science experiment. Water and oil are “immiscible” or simply don’t mix because water molecules are polar while oil molecules are non polar. And to answer the second question, oil is lighter or less dense than water and therefore oil floats on top of the water.

Before doing the fun part of adding food coloring with water, you can just simply mix or stir 3 tablespoon of water and 3 tablespoon of oil in a small clear container. Set the mixture aside for a little bit and observe what will occur. This simple exercise will show children how water and oil are insoluble when mixed together. It will also demonstrate how oil floats on the top of water. Quick and easy, right? But to make this idea more exciting, fun and beautiful for kids, follow the procedure below!

 

WATER & OIL EXPERIMENT

 

This super simple “water and oil” activity will make your toddlers and older kids get excited! Just look at all the beautiful colors that you can create as seen in the picture above. Most of the materials might already be present in your pantry, which makes this activity great! Although all the materials are safe, complete supervision is still recommended for toddlers. And just a heads up, this can be a messy experiment for the young toddlers especially if they would want to handle the dropper without any help from adults. But hey, at least they are enjoying!

Materials:

– Water

– Oil (baby oil or cooking oil)

Food Coloring

– Clear containers (e.g. clear plastic egg containers or empty peanut butter plastic bottle)

– Dropper

Procedures:

*we used a clear plastic egg container to minimize the use of oil but a larger container can be used alternatively.

1. Add 2-3 tablespoons of water  in several sections of plastic egg container (depending on how many food colorings you will use).

2. With the use of a dropper, add 1-2 drops of food coloring (one color per container) into the water and stir. Set aside.

4. Place 2-3 tablespoons of oil in another section of egg container.

5. With the use of dropper, help your toddlers (or let older kids do it) to slowly add water/food color mixture into the oil, one color at a time. For instance, we added yellow first.

6. Carefully add another color (green) into the oil container.

7. Repeat previous step using another color (red).

 

The results are amazingly beautiful, isn’t it? At the end, I just let my son use the dropper himself but of course it is quite messy. But as long as he is having a blast, that is all that matters to me.

We loved the results of the oil, water and food coloring mixture so much that we decided to try it out in a larger container. And the results were equally fascinating as well!

 

I truly love quick and easy experiments that keep kids busy for a longer time! If you would love to see more similar activities, please click the images below. And don’t forget to leave some comments below, I would love to hear ideas from you!

Till next time,

-Krista

Oh, and also, if you would love to learn more information about STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, math) activities, please subscribe below and receive PDF files with great information immediately! Alright, till next time!

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  1. Definition of STEAM and five STEAM activities
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