STEAM Activity: Pepper and Soap Experiment

What Kids Learn From This STEAM Activity

In the STEAM activity, Pepper and Water Science Experiment, you’ll discover how water molecules behave in a very cool way. When you sprinkle black pepper on water, you’ll notice the pepper flakes float on the surface. When you touch the water with a soapy finger, the pepper flakes rush to the sides of the bowl. This happens because the soap changes the water’s surface tension. It’s a bit like magic! This teaches you about how substances interact and why soap is great at cleaning things. It’s a fun way to learn about science and the properties of water and soap!

*Surface tension: Surface tension is like a “skin” on the surface of water that makes it act like a stretchy sheet. It’s why water droplets are round and bugs can walk on water.

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What We Need For This STEAM Activity

 

STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment Materials
STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment Materials

 

 

How To Do A Pepper and Soap Experiment

  1. Fill the bowl with water.

    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment - Fill Water
    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment – Fill Water
  2. Sprinkle a small amount of ground black pepper gently on the water’s surface.
  3. Notice how the pepper flakes float on the water.

    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment - Sprinkle Black Pepper Flakes
    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment – Sprinkle Black Pepper Flakes
  4. Dip your finger in the liquid dish soap.

    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment - Dip Your Finger In Dish Soap
    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment – Dip Your Finger In Dish Soap
  5. Gently touch the water’s surface with your soapy finger.
  6. Watch as the pepper flakes move away from your finger’s touch.
    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment - Touch The Water Surface
    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment – Touch The Water Surface

     

    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment - Black Pepper Magic
    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment – Pepper Flakes Move Away

     

    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment - Black Pepper Magic!
    STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment – Black Pepper Magic!

     

  7. Understand the Science. The soap changes the water’s surface tension, causing the pepper to move.

Variations & Challenges

  • Predict what will happen if you use more or less soap. Test your predictions by trying different amounts.
  • Instead of water, use other liquids like milk or juice. See if the pepper behaves differently.
STEAM Activity Pepper Experiment - With Food Coloring Added
STEAM Activity Pepper and Soap Experiment – With Food Coloring Added

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Author

  • Isabelle

    Isabelle has been an entrepreneur for last 22 years in retail and educational industry. She is also a mom to a child in elementary school. She believes that when kids are curious and use their imagination, amazing things can happen. She is particularly interested in STEAM learning (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics). She believes when children are encouraged to develop STEAM skills from a young age, they gain valuable tools to tackle future challenges in a creative, imaginative, and innovative manner. She enjoys researching STEAM and craft activities, plays, toys and resources and share with parents.

    http://steamandcreate.com Isabelle

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