The Gas You Pass

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Although we may not admit it, all humans fart or pass some gas. In this activity, learners make their own model to mimic food passing through intestines and discover what releases gas. Learners mash up a banana and monitor how much gas is released over time using a bottle and balloon. Extension ideas are included to compare fatty foods (like avocados) and foods high in starch and sugar (like fruits) in the model. Step-by-step instructions are included with photos. Activity guide includes a "What's going on?" explanation and connections to relevant science concepts like digestion, bacteria beneficial to our health, and the make-up of gasses in our intestines.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

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

Age Range:
Ages 8 - adult

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity, Model


Materials List (per group of students)

  • empty soda or water bottle, roughly 500mL
  • banana
  • medium-sized balloon
  • resealable sandwich bag
  • Marker
  • scissors


  • Life Sciences
    • Diversity of Life
      • Viruses and Bacteria
    • Human Body
      • Digestion
      • Health and Nutrition


Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


Source Collection

  • DIY Science Apps


  • , The Regents of the University of California, 2015

Funding Source:

  • National Institutes of Health Science Education Partnership Award, 5R25OD010543-02