What is the best material to clean up spilt spaghetti?
  • I tested three different types of material and the muslin cleaned up the spilt spaghetti the best.
  • Canned spaghetti has liquids in it as well as solids, so you need a material that will pick up both.
  • The fabric that has the best capillary action will clean up the liquids the best.
  • Capillary action is the movement of liquid up the fibres in the cloth.
  Did You Know?
  • Plants use capillary action to carry water to their leaves and flowers.
  • Most companies test their products in a similar way to find out which works best and how they can improve them.
Colourful Celery

What you need:
A stick of celery
Food colouring
A glass of water

What you do:
Add two drops of food colouring to your glass of water. Cut the end off the celery so that you can see the tube like capillaries running up through the celery. Put the stick celery into the glass of coloured water with the leaves at the top and leave it for at least 30 minutes.
What happens? Try the experiment again with a new stick of celery only this time cut the celery at both ends, cutting off all the leaves. Place the new celery in the glass of coloured water and leave it for 30 minutes again. What happens this time? Does the colour reach the same level? Why would that be?
In the 60’s tie-dyed clothing was really cool. And it was made using capillary action. You can try out the effects of tie-dye capillary action using tissue paper, and a few drops of food colouring in water. This can be messy so make sure you’ve put plenty of newspaper down.

Put a ¼ cup of water in a bowl and add two drops of food colouring. Fold a piece of tissue or a paper towel in half, then in half again, then in half again to make a square then fold the square in half at two corners to make a triangle. Dip each point of your paper triangle into the water then open up your tissue paper to see the pattern you have made. Leave it to dry in the sun.

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