What Do You Mean, Oil and Water Don’t Mix??!


Sometimes, my planned activities go so hilariously “wrong” – and still E has fun and enjoys her very own spin on things.

Recently, I was trying to do a colored water and oil activity like Growing a Jeweled Rose did as part of their Liquid Lab Experiments. It shows that oil and water don’t mix, right? Well, tell that to E 😉


What Do You Mean, Oil and Water Don't Mix??!




I set it up all nice and pretty. {We used left-over egg dyes from Easter, btw. I’m always happy to find ways of putting them to good use rather than just pour them down the drain.}


Set up for oil and water experiment.


E came to the table with a big grin of excitement and got right to work with the pipette.


Using the pipette to transfer colored water to the oil.


And that’s about as far as we proceeded with MY plan – from then on, it was E’s way all the way 😉

She mixed the water and oil with her hand


Doing her best to make oil and water mix, after all!


 tried to wash off the oily residue in the colored water,


Washing off her hand in the colored water.


 and spilled water and oil, then cleaned them up again.


Wiping up a spill.


When she was done, the oil and water hadn’t REALLY mixed, of course, but due to the dye bleeding into the oil, it sure was hard to tell for a toddler 😉


Only tiny blobs remain visible.




Not to be deterred, I set up the same thing again the next day, when E asked to use the egg dyes again. This time, E proceeded differently but still nowhere near MY plan: She dumped all the colored water into the bowl with the oil, then explored the pipette and its effects on the swirls in the liquid for a while.


Bowl full of three kinds of colored water and oil.


Finally, she wiped the little bowls clean and announced she was done.


Wiping off the bowls.


I couldn’t help but grin throughout this activity, I really thought it was hilarious.


All told, this was a lovely sensory and fine motor activity properly using the pipette for the first time – and we’ll simply save the science aspect for another time 😉




Which of your toddler activities have gone differently than you’d expected? How did you react? Leave a comment!




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