Apple Bubble Science!

What kid doesn’t LOVE bubbles? Here’s a quick and easy bubble experiment perfect for the Fall!  Bubbles in Apples!  And it should buy you some time to get dinner going while your kids have some fun.

Here’s what you need to get started:

  • water
  • juice
  • milk
  • straw
  • Hollowed out apple (although you can really do this in a glass or bowl.  Apples just make it more fun!)
  • tray/bowl

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Hollow out your apple.  I used an apple that was past its prime and was deemed un-edible by my boys.

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Add some water to the center and let your kids blow bubbles through the straw.  This is great for young toddlers who are learning to blow and is totally safe if they accidentally suck up the water.

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Ask them what they notice about the bubbles.  Do the bubbles last or do they pop quickly?  My boys noticed that the bubbles splattered everywhere.

Dump the liquid out and fill the apple with juice.  Ask your kids if they think juice will make the bubbles any different.  What is different about juice and water?  What is the same?  Will it make a difference?  Then let them blow their bubbles.

Notice that the juice didn’t really make much of a difference as juice is mostly water with a bit of sugar.

Repeat with milk.  As the same questions before blowing bubbles.  What happened?

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Milk is composed of fat and proteins which cause the bubbles to last longer and not pop.  The fun part of this is that the bubbles start overflowing from the apple.

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This was by far the most fun part of the experiment and my boys wanted to keep doing it over and over again.  When the tiny tots did it in class, they loved it too!  Lots of giggles!

Extensions for older kids: Have older kids explain what is different about the chemical make-up of juice, water and milk.  Ask them to explain their predictions and then try to see if they can explain the results.  Have them try different liquids and predict the behavior of bubbles.  Why might dish soap and water create such resistant bubbles?

For more Apple Science Activities, try:

The Science behind the Activity:

This experiment introduces the concept of surface tension.  Surface tension is the thin skin-like film on the surface of water.  Water has high surface tension which causes the water molecules to stick to each other (ever tried the drops on a penny and seen the dome shape of water on top?).  when a bubble forms, it stretches the water molecules causing the surface tension to break and the bubbles will pop.  Juice behaves similarly because most juices are mainly water.  But milk is a bit different.  It has fat and proteins and this causes milk to have less surface tension which causes the bubbles to last longer and the skin-like surface to stretch more easily.  When you blow bubbles in milk, they don’t pop as easily, creating the fun eruptions of milk bubbles overflowing.

For a detailed explanation of the science behind this activity, click on the following link: https://hilltownfamilies.wordpress.com/2008/05/27/kramp-2/

To see where I got my idea from, click on the following link: http://preschoolpowolpackets.blogspot.com/2015/08/edible-bubble-science-with-apples.html

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