How to Do the Paper in the Cup Experiment in Class

This is a fun experiment that the kids can easily replicate at home. You can also call it a magic trick if you like. It is very simple, but a necessary lesson to move onto other experiments that include water.

    Fill up the bowl with water.

    Stuff the paper towel into the top of the cup and get ready to dunk it in the bowl.

    Dunk the cup straight down into the bowl so that it is completely submerged. Tell the kids to look at the paper towel and see if it looks wet.

    Take the cup out of the water and remove the towel and have the kids check to see if it's wet or not.

    Explain to the kids that the water does not enter the cup because the air in the cup had nowhere to go. If the air cannot leave the cup through bubbles out of the bottom or a hole in the top, then the air must stay in the cup.

    Things You'll Need

    • Large bowl
    • Clear cup
    • Paper towel
    • Water

About the Author

Kurt began his teaching career in 1995 and immediately starting looking for ways to update the traditional kindergarten curriculum. His model was simple: Build a theme around what 5-year-olds like to do and create activities around those themes. His teaching style offers fun and creative curriculums that allow children to explore and learn on their own while adhering to state academic standards. Kurt created Rock and Roll Kindergarten as a “rebellious” alternative to traditional practices.