Monday, October 14, 2013


Bubble Science With Pumpkins!!

Bubbles, bubbles, bubbles!!  They're a perfect way to combine science, fall, and so much more!

This week I have three exciting bubble posts for you!  Today's bubble fun:  Bubble Science With Pumpkins!!   Grab your child goggles, pumpkins, and let's get started!

Lab Supplies: 
  • pre-gutted pumpkin for each child (I use the small "decorative" pumpkins and let my kiddos help in the gutting process.  But, those details are for another post!)
  • straw for each child
  • water
  • dish soap
  • optional: pans to catch the mess (you can always do this outside or on a table...the clean up is easy!)

Lab Goals:
  • sensory experience
  • explore bubbles
  • explain how bubbles work (basic bubble science)  

Lab Set-up & Procedure:

1- Fill one pumpkin half full of water, add a squirt of soap, and show your children how to blow bubbles in the pumpkin.

2- Let your children set up their pumpkins and make bubbles! 

3- At some point, show them that the straw will not pop the bubbles, but their dry fingers will.  Ask them why they think that is (the straw is covered in bubbles too).  They may want to dip their fingers in bubbles and see if it can "go through" the bubbles too.

My 3-year old wanted to dip the pumpkin's lid in soapy water and see if it would also go through the did!  Try other objects too!

4- Discuss the Science Points as they come up!  Obviously I expect my older daughter to explain more than the preschoolers, but even a 3-year old can tell you that he is blowing air into the liquid and that the soap is "catching" and surrounding the air.

Science Points:
  • Pumpkins have seeds in them.
  • Pumpkins float.  (Click here for a Pumpkin Science Lesson.)
  • Bubbles are made by a soapy "skin" surrounding air.  You blow the air into the soapy solution and the bubbles surround the air.  (See below for Advanced Bubble Science!)
  • The Soapy Bubble Skin has three layers: soap, water, and soap.
  • Rainbows sometimes appear in the bubbles because the bubbles separate 

Advanced Bubble Science:

Dish soap (detergent) molecules have two "ends" -- a polar end and a non-polar end, just like water.  When you blow bubbles the polar ends surround a very thin "sheet" of water and form a bubble as the soap molecules form weak hydrogen bonds with each other.  At the same time, weak hydrogen bonds are being formed between water molecules, attracting the positive hydrogen and negative oxygen atoms together.  

Be sure to join me all week for more amazing bubble posts!! 

And check out our fun Preschool Pumpkin Theme and 150+ Science Activities for Preschoolers!

And here are some fun Amazon affiliate links for your convenience.  You can read more about my policies here.

Happy Educating, Carla

I may share at any of these parties!


Laura Marschel said...

Wow, how did you even think of this, so cool! My daughter would love this!

Carla at Preschool Powol Packets said...

Thanks Laura--my kids thought it was awesome too! We've been doing a lot of bubble activities, and then I was setting up pumpkins and I just knew they were meant to go together!

Sharon said...

Bubbles are so much fun! Great way to enjoy some science :)

Frugal Mum said...

Thank you , i did this with my daughter yeasterday, she loved it, I have also linked to it on my blog andput it in ablog hop as it is just perfect for this tiem of year and my home educated little one

Erin said...

Oh how fun! We love playing with bubbles but I never thought to put them in a pumpkin!

Carla at Preschool Powol Packets said...

Thanks Sharon! I completely agree!

Frugal Mom, I'm so glad you guys got to enjoy it!! Thanks for the link!

Erin, your kids would love it!! I think I had as much fun with it as the kids, lol!

Shaunna Evans said...

This is so neat, Carla! My girls would have a blast blowing bubbles, and I love the science discussion and observations this encourages. Thanks for sharing at Discover & Explore. I'm featuring this post today.

fox_in_socks said...

We used this activity in our "ArtSmarts" club for 2 & 3 year olds at our library this week! They loved the whole process, and we finished up the experience by adding baking soda and coloured vinegar to the was exciting for all!

Carla at Preschool Powol Packets said...

Fox in Socks, I'm so glad your club enjoyed it!! Thanks so much for letting me know!! <3