- You can help your child make a rainbow appear on the wall by having her place a small mirror in a glass of water.
- Then, have her place the glass on a window ledge in the direct sun light.
- Help her adjust the mirror so that the light hits the mirror and reflects through the water, creating a rainbow on the wall.
- On a sunny day, get out a garden hose and show your child how to spray out the water so that it creates a rainbow in the spray.
- To make rainbows, we need light and water.
- Explain to your child that light contains many different colors; red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple. (Yes, I know the official names of the last two colors are violet and indigo, but with preschoolers, I like to say with the common colors, blue and purple.)
- When the light is filtered through water, the water breaks up and light rays and we can see the different colors.
- Show your child a prism (available at teacher stores).
- Stand at a window that has sun shining through.
- Hold the prism up to catch a light ray.
- Have your child look for the rainbow created by the light reflected off the prism.
- Let your child hold the prism and make his own rainbows.
- Take your child outside on a sunny day and blow some bubbles.
- See if she can find any rainbows in her bubbles.
HOW LIGHT REVEALS ITS MANY COLORS - so far we have seen that water and prisms can fracture light and enable it to show its many rainbow colors.
- Place some milk in a shallow dish.
- Add drops of several different food colors in the milk.
- Add a drop of liquid soap to the milk.
- Watch what happens?
OIL & WATER RAINBOWS
- Give your child a bowl of water.
- Let him use eye droppers to drop (a drop each of red, blue and yellow food coloring) into the water.
- Add two drops of cooking oil.
- Have your child look for rainbows in their water.