Lung Capacity

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This is an activity about lung capacity. Learners will measure their own lung capacity using a homemade spirometer. A spirometer is an apparatus for measuring the volume of air inspired and expired by the lungs. It is simple to make using an empty soda bottle, a dishpan and a piece of flexible tubing. [Activity is publicly available through a web crawler capture on Activity write-up only, images are unavailable.]

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per student

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 18

Resource Type:


Materials List (per student)

  • 2 or 3 liter plastic bottle
  • Large, deep bowl or plastic dishpan
  • Water
  • Masking tape
  • Measuring cup
  • 30 cm (1 foot) long piece of flexible tubing (aquarium tubing works well)


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
      • Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering
  • Life Sciences
    • Human Body
      • Respiration
  • Mathematics
    • Data Analysis and Probability
      • Data Collection
    • Measurement
      • Units of Measurement

Informal Categories

  • Model Building


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Access Rights:

  • Free access


Source Collection

  • TryScience