Colour Changing Milk Experiment


What happens when food colouring, milk and detergent come together

Materials Required

  1. Wide shallow bowl, large lid or shallow container
  2. Milk―1 cup
  3. Detergent
  4. Food dye
  5. Skewer, cotton bud, stick or toothpick
  6. Gloves (for food dye)


Source all your ingredients – Gather materials

Method (or Ideas)

  1. Set up your ingredients and source a bowl/plate.
  2. Add about 1-2 cm (deep) milk to bowl/plate.
  3. Add a few drops of food dye into the milk.
  4. Then add a few drops of dishwashing detergent and watch what happens!
  5. Use the skewer/stick or cotton bud to move around the dye in the milk to watch the colours merge and create new colours.

Facilitation Tips – What To Say

  • What is going to happen? Ask your child to predict
  • What happened?
  • Why did this happen?
  • What happened to the colours?
  • Will the same thing happen if we do it again?

Extend the Experience

  • Other simple science experiments e.g. volcano- bi-carb/food dye/vinegar

WHO Guidelines for Physical Activity & Sedentary Behaviour

Removing chairs and encouraging your child to stand while completing this experiment can reduce time spent sedentary.

Early Years Learning Framework


  1. Children develop a range of skills and processes such as problem solving, inquiry, experimentation, hypothesising, researching and investigating
  2. Children develop dispositions for learning such as curiosity, cooperation, confidence, creativity, commitment, enthusiasm, persistence, imagination and reflexivity
  3. Children transfer and adapt what they have learned from one context to another


Principle 1: Secure, respectful and reciprocal relationships. Through a widening network of secure relationships, children develop confidence and feel respected and valued.


Practice: Learning through play. Play can expand children’s thinking and enhance their desire to know and to learn. In these ways play can promote positive dispositions towards learning. Children’s immersion in their play illustrates how play enables them to simply enjoy being.

More Play Experiences

View All

News from Playgroups NSW

Read All News

Generation Playtime Launches!

Generation Playtime Playgroup NSW is proud to announce the launch of Generation Playtime. This innovative program, funded by the Department of Communities and Justice, aims... Learn More

Become a Member

Playgroup NSW leads play-based programs and services for NSW families with children birth to school age, offering development, shared experiences, and family support, that results in active citizens and inclusive communities.