Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Science project: Food-dye Color Wheel

Every year about this time I start to really, REALLY crave color. Like clockwork, every January I start scheming about decorating with yellow or orange or something bright just to liven things up a bit. It's been a little better this year because my kitchen is south-facing and everything is white and light blue, so it feels nice and light and airy. 

That being said, I still think more color this time of year is great. So, the kids and I made this fun food-dye color wheel the other day. It was a great little science and art project. (What could be more fun that mixing art and science?!!?)



It was such fun, and I couldn't believe how patient the kids were (ages 3 and 5), just staring at the colored water move slowly up the paper towels and mixing together. We learned about color-combining  and the color wheel. We also learned a bit about osmosis, diffusion, and siphons.



Here's what you need to make this fun color wheel:
6 clear cups
6 paper towels
red food dye
blue food dye 
yellow food dye


Here's what you do to make the color wheel: 
1) Fill 3 cups with water and mix in red food dye into one, blue food dye into the second and yellow food dye into the third. 
2) place the cups in a circle as shown above with an empty cup in between each of the 3 you already made with the primary colors in them. 
3) fold the paper towels into about 1-inch strips and place each end into adjacent cups. (I snipped off a bit of each paper towel to make them shorter.)
4) Watch as the dyed water seeps up the paper towels and combines into the empty cups to make the secondary colors of orange, green and purple.



After all the colors had mixed, we took them out of the circle shape and made rainbows and such with them. Fun little science project with the girls. Certainly added more color to our day!


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