From start to finish, this experiment will take less than 3 minutes, but the end result will likely cause you kids to want to try it again and again. Bonus if you make the ‘Zoom’ noise the first time doing the experiment!
Science Experiment Video
- Shallow Dish
- Dish Soap
Step 1 – Begin by placing a drop of dish soap onto a plate. Then set the plate aside.
Step 2 – Next, take a shallow dish and pour water on it until the entire bottom of the dish is covered.
Step 3 – Sprinkle a tablespoon of pepper on the top of the water.
Step 4 – Dip one finger into the dish soap and then place that finger in the middle of the dish with the water and pepper
Step 5 – Watch what happens..Zoom!
How Does the Experiment Work?
When you sprinkled the pepper on the water, most (if not all) of it stayed floating at the surface of the water. This is because the pepper flakes are so light that the surface tension of the water keeps them floating on top.
However, when you add a little dish soap, the surface tension of the water is disturbed. The water molecules move away from the soap taking the pepper with them. This causes the pepper to move or run away from the center of the plate.
If you liked this experiment, check out these other experiment with common food items:
- The Floating Egg – Eggs naturally sink in water, but we made them float
- Why Does the Heavier Orange Float? – This experiment show us that the weight of an object isn’t the only indicator to use to determine if it will sink or float.
- Dancing Raisins – Watch the Raisins dance around in the glass.
- Put a Straw Through a Potato – Did you know you can easily put a straw through a raw potato?
- Bouncing Egg – Make a raw egg bounce…just don’t drop it from too high in the air!
I hope you enjoyed the experiment. Here’s some printable instructions.