Drop Shape

Source Institutions

Source Institutions

Add to list Go to activity
In this activity, learners get a closer look at the shape of a drop of water and a drop of oil. Learners first drip water onto wax paper and examine the shape of separate drops from a side view. Learners then drip oil onto wax paper to examine what shape each drop has and whether oil drops are like water drops or different. Finally learners drip colored water drops and oil drops onto wax paper together, mix oil and water in a container, and observe how the two fluids behave when they are in contact.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity


Materials List (per group of students)

  • Small amount of water in a small container
  • Small amount of cooking oil in a different container
  • 2 plastic stirrers, plastic utensils, toothpicks or medicine droppers
  • 3 small pieces of wax paper
  • Container
  • Food coloring
  • Pencil


  • Physical Sciences
    • States of Matter
      • Liquids
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, The Regents of the University of California, 2007