Science experiments are an easy way to keep the kids entertained all summer long. This simple M&M rainbow requires just a minute of prep work and a few common household supplies. It’s a simple science experiment with major cool factor.
To prep, I grabbed a flat bottomed cup, a handful of M&Ms, 1/4 measuring cup and a plate to catch any spillage. That’s it! Easy peasy.
Making M&M Rainbows
I invited my son to grab a red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple M&M from the pile and place them around the bottom of the cup.
Then he filled the measuring cup with warm water from the tap and slowly poured it on top of the M&Ms, covering them with water. He watched in amazement as the candy coatings began dissolving and spreading toward each other, but didn’t mix. The simple science activity created a colorful rainbow.
After several minutes, he was eager to see what would happen if he shook the cup. His face lit up with excitement when he discovered that the M&Ms morphed into a fun tie dye.
My son repeated the simple science experiment over and over again. Sometimes he used M&M patterns – yellow, blue, yellow, blue. Other times he tried random color combinations – orange, yellow, green and blue. The possibilities were endless.
The Science Behind It
M&Ms are covered in a sugar coating. That sugar dissolves in warm water and begins spreading away from the candy. The molecules in the candy coating press against each other, keeping the colors in one spot. Gobstoppers, Skittles and Sprees do the same thing too. For more rainbow science fun, whip up a Rainbow in a Jar!