In this science experiment we will make magic sand and explore hydrophobic substances. Normally
when water is added to sand the outcome is predictable. The water soaks in and the sand becomes
wet and sinks. This is not the case with MAGIC SAND! Magic Sand has the unique quality of staying
dry under water. You can buy Magic Sand on Ebay or from science stores or make your own batch!
Materials to Make Your Own Magic Sand:
- Silicon spray (Home Depot or Lowe's)
- 2 clear plastic or glass containers with large mouths
Watch Video: Make Magic Sand
Process Make Magic Sand Experiment
1. Layout the sand on a piece of cardboard or on top of some newspaper. Spread it thin. Spray the
sand with a couple coats of the silicone spray. Make sure to mix the sand around between coats to
ensure coating all side of the sand. Let the silicone dry overnight or at least 12 hours.
2. Fill the clear plastic cups or glass containers about 1/2 full with water.
3. Add a generous amount of the magic sand to one of the containers.
4. Notice the sand appears to be dry even though its under water.
5. Prove its still dry by pouring the water from one container to the other.
The Science Behind Make Magic Sand Experiment:
Magic sand works because the silicone coating makes it repel the water molecules. The scientific
term for this is Hydrophobic meaning to "fear water". Regular sand referred to as being Hydrophilic or
"water loving" because it will absorb water. You can explore the properties of water molecules by
making a hypothesis about what will happen when you add water to both magic sand and regular
sand. Then perform the experiment and note the differences between Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic
sand. Now get your friends and make magic sand.
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