Drying It Out

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In this activity, learners investigate and compare the rate of drying in different conditions. Learners place wet dish cloths in front of a fan, on a flat surface inside the room, in a box with a lid, and outside on the grass or in the sun by a window and record the dampness on a chart every ten minutes. Learners discover that wind can impact the speed of water evaporation. This activity can also be used to introduce learners to the scientific method.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
30 to 45 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 11

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan


Materials List (per group of students)

  • Fan
  • Four dish cloths (all of the same size and material)
  • Inexpensive drying rack
  • Water
  • Chart paper, markers
  • Timer


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Structure
      • Atmosphere
  • Mathematics
    • Data Analysis and Probability
      • Data Analysis
      • Data Collection
      • Data Representation
  • Physical Sciences
    • States of Matter
      • Liquids
      • Changes of Phase
    • Structure and Properties of Matter
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Asking Questions
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Gathering Data
      • Formulating Explanations
      • Communicating Results

Informal Categories

  • Outdoor Activity


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, Kohl Children's Museum of Greater Chicago, Inc., 2012