Mysterious dry paper in water

Dry paper in water

Mysterious dry paper in water

Mysterious dry paper in water 540 402 admin

How can you put a piece of paper under water and keep it dry?  This is a fun riddle with science learning.  Lay out the pieces needed for this experiment and let kids try first to figure it out on their own.

What you need:

  • large bowl
  • water
  • cup
  • paper towels or pieces of paper

What you do:

  1. Fill the bowl about 2/3 with water.
  2. Stuff the paper towel into the bottom of the cup.
  3. Turn the cup over and push it straight down to the bottom of the water.
  4. Pull the cup straight up and take out the dry paper towel.

Why it works:

The cup is actually full of air and the paper towel.  When you push the cup straight down into the water, the air is trapped in the cup and protects the paper towel from touching the water.

Want more? Experiment and discover…

What if the air could escape? Tilt the cup to the side under water and see the air bubble escape.  Is the towel still dry?

What if there was a hole in the cup?  Punch a hole in the top of the cup.  Make  sure the hole is not covered by the paper towel.  Push the cup into the water.  Is the towel still dry?