To reinforce the color-mixing ideas we’d talked about previously, we tried another experiment with food-coloring and water. This demonstration relies on the tendency of liquids to reach equilibrium. When we connect the jars, the water will flow until it has reached an equal level in all of the jars. If we put food coloring in some jars, the color with flow with the water!
We set up jars with our primary colors — red, yellow, and blue — and jars with just a little bit of clear water between them. Then we connected our jars in a circle with dry paper towels. Immediately, we could see the color start to flow upward into the towels.
This experiment took a little patience. At a few points, we added water to the red, yellow, and blue jars and used a syringe to empty some water out of the secondary jars to encourage a bit more flow.
Ultimately, the result was a perfect rainbow! This really helped our preschooler to understand the way primary colors combine to make secondary colors, and he seems to have it down now! We’ve kept our results from our first color-mixing experiment on the refrigerator, and we’ve been reviewing them every morning.
What other color-mixing activities have your kids enjoyed?