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Science Sunday for Kids - Tie Dye Milk Experiment

Science Sunday for Kids – Tie Dye Milk Experiment

Science Sunday for Kids – Tie Dye Milk Experiment

Welcome to our very first instalment of Science Sunday! We have so much fun at home playing with science that we thought it would be even more fun to share them with you. Most of the experiments we do are quite simple and can be done with things around the house. We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

Tie Dye Milk Experiment


tie dye milk experiment

  • a shallow dish
  • milk
  • cotton swabs
  • four colours of liquid food colouring (if you don’t have four colors that’s ok)
  • dish soap


Pour enough milk into the dish to cover the bottom and so you have about 1/4 of milk.

Place one drop of food colouring near the centre of the dish:

tie dye milk experiment

Now put in one drop of your next colour so it is just touching, or almost touching, the first colour. Repeat with each colour.

tie dye milk experiment

Next pick up a cotton swab and gently dab in on the surface right in the middle of your dish, in the centre of the colours. Observe what happens. Nothing right? The cotton might absorb a bit of colour but that’s about it.

Now dip the dry end of your cotton swab in some dish soap.

tie dye milk experiment

Now try again, gently dipping the now soap covered cotton swab in the centre of the bowl.

tie dye milk experiment

How fun is that!

How does it work?

Although milk is mainly comprised of water it also contains other molecules like fat, proteins and minerals suspended in solution. Now proteins and fats are pretty sensitive to changes in their environment. Bring in the dish soap. The negative end of the molecules in the dish soap line up with the positive end of the water molecules in the milk. This creates a reaction that causes the soap molecules to push out over the surface of the milk and because we’ve put colour in the milk we can watch it happen!




This article has 1 comment

  1. Love it! The science, the meme and watching the beautiful colours. We might have to add this to our weekly events. Besos Sarah.

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