Lab: Unique Properties of Water
Students will rotate through seven different stations during this lab to discover the unique properties of water including surface tension, cohesion and adhesion, polarity, density, capillary action and water's role as the universal solvent. This lab reinforces key concepts and scientific terms from your study of the Chemistry of Life and gives students the opportunity to practice laboratory procedures and become more familiar with common lab equipment.

This product is fully editable and includes 4 files:

1. Read This First includes a product overview, contact information, and image credits.
2. Student Lab Handout with the following sections:
• Problem
• Introduction
• Pre-Lab Activity
• Materials
• Procedure
• Data and Observation Table
• Analysis and Conclusion

3. Teacher Answer Key includes answers to questions and sample data as well as an optional activity that can be used as a teacher demonstration or as an opportunity for students to design their own activity.

4. Station Cards and Set Up Guide includes instruction cards for each of 7 stations, which can be laminated for repeated use. A comprehensive materials list (see below) is also included in addition to set up notes that will make your prep time more efficient.

Comprehensive Materials List for 7 Lab Groups
• 50 mL
• 100 mL, 4
• 150 mL
• 200 mL, 2
• 250 mL
• 500 mL, 2
graduated cylinders
• 100 mL
• 50 mL
stirring rods, 2
paper clip
plastic fork
petri dish
black marker, water-based
stopwatch or timer
2.5 mL (1/2 tsp) measuring spoon
test tube brush
several small bowls or cups
hot plate and beaker to warm water, if you don’t have access to warm tap water
Optional: balance
plastic pipettes, 7
vegetable oil, approx. 200 mL
salt, approx. 45 mL (3 Tbsp)
powdered laundry detergent, approx. 20 mL (4 tsp)
corn syrup, 70-80 mL
isopropyl alcohol, 70-80 mL
paper towel, cut into 7 strips, 1.5 cm wide
paper plates, 7
milk (whole works best), 400 mL
food coloring (green, red, blue, yellow)
cotton swabs, 14
dishwashing liquid, approx. 15 mL (1 Tbsp) + additional for cleaning
ice cubes, about 2 dozen
water, warm and room temperature
Optional: transparent tape, small plate

Aloha and Welcome to the Island!

Happy Teaching!
Carla Brooks
©2015 Science Island


Save for later
  • 1-Read-This-First---Properties-of-Water.docx
  • 2-Properties-of-Water---Student-Lab.docx
  • 3-Properties-of-Water---Teacher-Answer-Key.docx
  • 4-Properties-of-Water---Station-Cards-and-Set-Up-Guide.docx

About this resource


Created: Sep 18, 2015

Updated: Feb 22, 2018


docx, 442 KB



docx, 39 KB



docx, 46 KB


Report a problem