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Pipe Cleaner Prints & Bubbles

We can use string and other materials to make different shapes. How can we use pipe cleaners to make shapes?

In this make-and-take activity, students bend pipe cleaners into different shapes and use them to make patterned prints. The second part of this activity uses pipe cleaners as bubble wands, focusing on one round thing that is always fun - bubbles!

Round the Circle: printable guide.

These activities are part of Science World’s Big Science For Little Hands program. They were developed and tested with preschool and kindergarten educators.

Objectives

  • Bend pipe cleaners into different shapes.

  • Use these pipe cleaners to make prints and observe the patterns that are created.

  • Make a pipe cleaner bubble wand.

Materials

Key Questions

  • Prints: What shapes are you making? Do they look the same when you stamp them on the paper, or are the shapes a little different? What different patterns can you make?
  • Bubbles: What shape are the bubbles? Can you make them any other shape? How many bubbles can you make with your bubble wand? Can you make big bubbles? Small bubbles?

What To Do

Preparation:

If doing the bubble wand activity, pre-purchase or prepare bubble mixture; see ‘Materials’ for a link to our favourite bubble recipes.

Activity:

Prints:

  1. Bend a pipe cleaner into a shape, leaving one end straight to use as a handle. Make a few more! Try to make different shapes.
  2. Holding the handle, dip your pipe cleaner shape into some paint and stamp it onto a piece of paper. Try your other pipe cleaners. Try making different patterns.

Bubble Wands:

  1. Bend a fresh pipe cleaner into a circle shape, leaving one end straight to use as a handle.
  2. Outside or in an area with a tablecloth or tarp on the floor, dip the circle end of your pipe cleaner into a container of bubble mixture, and blow away!

Extensions

  • Look for other round items that you can use to make round-themed prints.
  • Try making bubble wands using different shapes. Bend a pipe cleaner into a square, a triangle, a heart - whatever! Does the shape of your wand affect the shape of the bubbles? (It does not - bubbles always go right back to their round shape!)
  • Make a bubble wand with a large circle. Does it make larger bubbles?
  • Try making Bubble Prints!

Other Resources

Science World | Make your own Bubble Solution