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::: climbing colours


We incorporated lots of simple science into our program and a great introduction to science at the beginning of the year is what we call the ‘climbing colours’ experiment. All you need is a couple of layers of paper towel or a serviette, a water based felt tip pen, (a permanent marker will not work!) a clear glass or jar and a few centimeters of water.

Place a mark with the felt tipped pen (we chose blue) on the paper towel just above the water line and stand it up in the water.

Encourage the children to watch as the paper towel absorbs the water. As it climbs closer to the ‘mark’ on the paper the colours will begin to bleed …

and separate …

revealing the different colours blended to make up the colour of the felt tipped pen. It’s like doing a colour mixing activity in reverse!

Another idea is to draw different colours on the paper towel …

place it into the water …

and simply watch them blend into each other.

Either way our children loved it!


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10 Responses to “climbing colours”

  1. avatar Scott says:

    Thanks for the idea.

    We also love to let the kids draw on a paper towel or coffee filter and then drop water (or paint water) over it to see the colors run.

    ::: That’s a really cool idea Scott … we’ll be filing that one away, thanks! :) :)


  2. Can’t wait to try it!

    ::: Enjoy it The Activity Mom! :) :)

  3. avatar Kerri says:

    Definitely want to try it!! Thanks! Kerri

    ::: Have fun with it Kerri. :) :)

  4. avatar Candace says:

    Very cool–we’ve done this with coffee filters and spray bottles but I love the idea of “climbing colors” and using scientific observation! I shared on twitter (@candaceapril) and on facebook (Naturally Educational)!

    ::: Thanks for sharing Candace. The beauty of science with young children is it doesn’t have to be rocket science just a cool learning experience! :) :)

  5. avatar Kate says:

    It’s so much fun to watch the kids’ faces as colours move. P.S love the nudie plate behind the paper :)

    ::: heeheehee Kate that plate only just made the ‘G’ rating I think! :) :)

  6. avatar stephanie a says:

    LOVE the censored nudity on the plate : )

    Isn’t science beautiful?

    ::: That was a lucky shot wasn’t it Stephanie?! :) ;)


  7. [...] I have seen this idea a couple of times now with the first time being at Irresistible Ideas for Play Based Learning. [...]

  8. avatar Carissa says:

    Does it have to be a felt tipped pen? Does a regular marker work?

    ::: Carissa it will need to be a water based pen NOT permanent or the colours won’t run and separate. :) :)


  9. [...] קישורים לשני ניסויים שונים. האחד מראה כיצד המים עולים למעלה, על ידי הנחת נייר מגבת שעליו פסים של מרקר הנמרחים שעה [...]

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