Return to Chemistry IndexBubbles: Science or Fun?

Paula Z. Jones Charles Brownell

6741 S. Michigan Avenue

Chicago IL 60637

(312)535-3030Objective:

This lesson is designed for an intermediate grade level.

After blowing bubbles, students will be able to test the effect of four

differently shape wands and three geometric figures in a bubble mixture.Hypothesis:

Does a bubble always form a sphere?Materials Needed:

Dawn dishwashing liquid, cups, water, yarn, scissors, pipecleaners, string,

straws, trays, and a large container.

BUBBLE MAKERSINDIVIDUAL WANDSBend pipecleaners to form a circle, square, heart, and triangle.RECTANGULAR FRAMEMaterials: two standard drinking straws; a piece of cotton string 11/2m long. Procedure: Feed the string through both straws and tie a knot.TETRAHEDRONMaterials: Three standard drinking straws; three half-size straws; and nine pipecleaners. Procedure: Twist two pipecleaners together to make a pipecleaner that is somewhat longer than a standard drinking straw; repeat twice. Put three long pipe cleaners together and twist them together at the top. Slip three standard drinking straws onto the pipecleaners; bend the pipecleaners at the bottom to form feet. Insert three standard pipecleaners through three half-size straws. Make a triangle with them by twisting their corners together. Twist base and top together at corners.CUBEMaterials: Six standard drinking straws, each cut in half and twelve pipecleaners. Procedure: Put three of the pipecleaners together and twist them tightly at one end. Make four complete sets. Slip half-straws onto the pipecleaner; bend the pipecleaner to form feet. Make each set look like the capital letter T. Use two sets to form a square with two extended sides. Repeat the procedure with the other two sets. Make one square bottom of the cube by twisting up the extended straws; make the other square the top by twisting the down the extended straws. Fit the top to the bottom, twisting all corners.Strategy:

Cooperative Learning

1. Each student receives 4 pipecleaners, a straw, and a cup.

2. Make a circle, square, heart, and triangle with a pipecleaner.

3. Cover the bottom of the cup with Dawn dishwashing liquid.

4. Fill the cup with a 1/2 cup of water.

5. Blow bubbles indoors and outdoors.

6. Record results on Bubbleology worksheet.

7. Form three groups.

8. Build a rectangular frame, tetrahedron, and a cube.

9. Record results on Bubbleology worksheet.

Bubbleology WorksheetWAND PREDICT INSIDE OUTSIDE DRAW SHAPE COMMENTSSHAPE SHAPE SHAPE SHAPE| | | | | CIRCLE | | | | | | | | | | SQUARE | | | | | | | | | | HEART | | | | | | | | | | TRIANGLE | | | | | | | | | | STRAW | | | | | | | | | | PIPE | | | | | CLEANER | | | | | | | | | | RECTANGULAR | | | | | FORM | | | | | | | | | | TETRAHEDRON | | | | | | | | | | CUBE | | | | | | | | | |Performance Assessment:

Students are evaluated by completing the bubbleology worksheet. This assignment

is graded as a pass or fail lab in class assignment.Conclusion:

Regardless of the shape of the wand, bubbles always form spheres.Reference:Science and Children,May 1986Science Scope,October 1988AIMS Education Foundation,1988