STEAM Activity, STEM Activity: Density Tower

What Kids Learn From This STEAM Activity

In a Density Tower STEAM activity, kids learn about different materials and their densities, which means how closely packed the molecules are in a substance. By layering liquids of varying densities, like water, oil, and dish soap, they create a colorful tower where each layer stays separate because of their different densities. This hands-on experiment helps kids understand that denser substances sink below less dense ones. It’s a fun way to explore science and the concept of buoyancy, and it also encourages critical thinking and problem-solving as kids figure out the order and density of liquids to create the tower.

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What We Need For This STEAM Activity

 

STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower Materials
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower Materials

To conduct the Density Tower experiment, you will need the following materials:

 

*Safety Precautions: Since some of the liquids used in this experiment can be hazardous if ingested, ensure adult supervision, and be cautious when handling them. Also, work in a well-ventilated area.

How to Do the STEAM Activity Density Tower Experiment

 

 

  1. Add food coloring to the clear liquids to add color. (water, dish soap, rubbing alcohol)
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower - Add Food Coloring
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower – Add Food Coloring

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower - Stir
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower – Stir
  2. Place the liquids in order by density. We switched the positions of water and dish soap, even though dish soap is lighter. When we placed water above milk, they mixed easily because there is very little density difference between water and milk. The density of water is approximately 1.0 grams per milliliter (g/mL), while milk typically has a density of around 1.03 to 1.04 g/mL.

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower - Place Liquids In Order By Density
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower – Place Liquids In Order By Density
  3. Fill the tall glass with liquids in order:  honey, milk, dish soap, water, vegetable oil, rubbing alcohol
  4. Watch as the liquids separate into distinct layers based on their densities, forming a colorful and visually appealing density tower.

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower - Fill The Glass With Liquids In Order
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower – Fill The Glass With Liquids In Order
  5. Drop small objects to see where they settle in the layers: bolt, marble, cherry tomato, raisin, bead, water cap, ping pong ball
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower - Drop Small Objects
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower – Drop Small Objects
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower

 

STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower With Objects
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Density Tower With Objects

Variations & Challenges

  • Layering Liquids: You can use different liquids with a wide range of densities, such as milk, colored sugar water, or even different concentrations of saltwater, to create a more complex tower.
  • Artistic Expression: Encourage students to create a visually appealing and artistic Density Tower by carefully choosing colors and layering techniques.

 

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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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