Match in a glass experiment

Match in a glass experiment

Home science experiments are a great way to engage your children in some hands-on learning. This classic match in a glass experiment needs some adult supervision but otherwise just requires simple items you have at home.

What you need:

  • Blu-tack, playdough or even chewing gum will do
  • Match
  • Plate
  • Highball glass
  • Water
  • Food colouring (optional)

Number of players:


Use the blu-tack or playdough to stick the unlit match, upright to the plate.

Pour a moat of water around the match (you can colour the water with food colouring to make it more fun if you want!).

Get an adult to light the match for you.

Quickly place the glass over the top of the lit match.

Watch as the water is sucked into the glass.

Why is it so?

The match creates hot air inside the glass. The difference in air temperature between the inside of the glass and outside the glass causes the gas inside the glass to push against the glass. This causes a vacuum effect. When the match starts to go out, the air cools and the pressure is released, sucking the water inside the glass.

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