Exploring How Liquids Behave

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Learners apply their knowledge from a previous study to identify different liquids--water, corn syrup, and vegetable oil. They also investigate combinations of liquids, two at a time, to see how they interact. This is meant as a follow-up lesson to the related activity, Exploring Liquids. As an extension, learners can continue their study of these liquids in the lesson, Traveling Through Different Liquids.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

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

Age Range:
Ages 4 - 8

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity


Materials List (per group of students)

  • 12 identical clear plastic or glass bottles with caps for each group of six students
  • Vegetable oil
  • Light Karo (corn) syrup
  • Water
  • Food coloring (any color except yellow)


  • Physical Sciences
    • Chemistry
      • Solutions
    • States of Matter
      • Liquids
    • Structure and Properties of Matter
      • Volume and Density
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Asking Questions
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Gathering Data


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • see color
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Janulaw, Sharon


  • All rights reserved, The University of California Museum of Paleontology, Berkeley, and The Regents of the University of California, 2010