Make your own rainbow density column or lava lamp and observe the effect of immiscible liquids and every day items of different densities.
- Handout | PDF, Size 2.74 mb
These resources were created for the Cambridge science festival 2014, and are featured resources in our autumn 2015 ‘Get colourful with chemistry’ theme.
If you teach primary science, see the headings below to find out how to use this resource:
Children will develop their working scientifically skills by:
- Drawing conclusions and raising further questions that could be investigated, based on their data and observations.
- Asking their own questions about scientific phenomena.
- Compare and group everyday materials on the basis of their properties.
Children will learn:
- That different liquids have different densities.
- That the properties of different liquids affect whether a substance will dissolve and form a solution.
Suggested activity use
This resource can be used as a discussion tool with small groups, based around predictions and observations, as various liquids are added to the density column. This will allow you to make assessments based on children’s responses.
Alternatively, the activity could be set up to allow a whole class to carry out the experiment, working in small groups. Children can follow your prompts, again allowing them to note observations and offer explanations as to what is happening. This could provide a platform for studying densities or dissolving properties of different liquids.
This activity also links well with K-Mistry – fast facts: - dense liquids (https://edu.rsc.org/2331.article
You will need to provide equipment, and various liquids of different densities, in order to carry out the experiment.
Children may need some help when creating the rainbow density columns.
Please take into account any health and safety considerations, particularly with regards to the use of Alka-Seltzer tablets.