St. Patrick’s Day Experiment

March 17, 2014 9:00 am Published by .

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Have some festive hands-on science fun with this experiment. Everything you need can be found at home.


  • Plate
  • Milk
  • Green food coloring
  • Cotton swab
  • Dish soap

Procedure: Fill the plate with milk until the bottom is covered. Put a few drops of the green food coloring near the center of the plate. Put a couple of drops of dish soap on the end of the cotton swab. Touch the soapy end of the cotton swab to the center of the plate.

St. Patrick's Day Xplore BoX Experiment

What happens? Why?

The green food coloring moves across the milk due to the soap weakening the chemical bonds of the fats and proteins in the milk. The food coloring molecules are moved out of the way as the soap molecules move around in the milk to find the fat molecules. These bursts of green color show the activity of the soap and fat molecules moving.

Want to explore more?

Repeat the experiment with skim, 1%, 2%, whole milk, and almond milk. What happens? Are the results different? Why?

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This post was written by Rebeca

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