Somewhere Over the Rainbow

The Red Room students have continued their exploration of rainbows, color, and light using prisms. Last week, they created their prisms using water, a clear cup, and light. They also added mirrors to the exploration. Making your own prism is no easy feat; it requires patience and perseverance. The Rainbows worked diligently to explore how light bends and refracts through water to try and create a rainbow. The students attempted to make their rainbows using light from sunlight and flashlights. As the light travels through the glass of water (like in a crystal prism), it slows down and bends (refraction), separating the light into the colors of the rainbow or the visible spectrum.


For the exploration, a cup was filled ¾ with water and placed on white paper. The Rainbows had to move and manipulate the cup of water to try and create a rainbow on the paper. Some friends picked up the cup and angled it towards the sun. Other friends tried using a flashlight. It wasn’t easy, especially as the sun was not shining directly into the classroom. There was so much excitement when one of the students created a visible rainbow. Sometimes, only a few of the colors from the rainbow could be seen. Why do you think that happened?


The students were also given mirrors to place in the cup of water. They were asked if angling the mirror and shining the flashlight at the cup could help them create a rainbow.


I challenge all the Red Room families to try these explorations at home and try to create rainbows. 🌈