Do you have leftover Valentine’s Day gummy candies? If you do, then this is the perfect experiment to try! Learn all about osmosis through this experiment.
- Gummy Candy
- Writing Utensil
1. If you have a scale, weigh your gummy candy and record how much they weigh.
2. Place your gummy candy in the bowl. Then, pour enough water into the bowl so the candy is covered.
3. Let the candy sit in the bowl of water. Check on it every couple of hours. What do you see happening?
Science Tip: Did your gummy candy grow? Some gummies will grow while other do not. If your gummy didn't grow, try again with another kind.
4. If you weighed and recorded your gummy candy’s weight earlier, weigh and record the weight of your now grown gummy candy. Is there a difference?
What's happening? The gummy candy grew because of a process called osmosis. Osmosis happens when water moves from one side of a membrane, or barrier, to the other side of the membrane until both sides are balanced. Because gummy candies are made of water, sugar, and gelatin, they make the perfect membrane.
When you set up your experiment, the gummy candy was placed in a bowl with water. There was a lot more water on the outside of the gummy candy than the inside, which causes the water to be unbalanced (inside the gummy candy vs. outside the gummy candy).
The water then moves from the outside of the gummy candy through the membrane – the surface of the gummy candy – to the inside of the gummy candy. This happens until the water is equal on both sides. The gummy candy grows because of all the extra water that is now inside.