Electric Play Dough Science Experiments


Electric Play Dough Science Experiments with tags playdough videos, electricity science, electricity science project, electricity science experiment, electricity science video, electricity science fair, how to make play doh, how to make playdough, how to make playdoh, circuits physics, science experiments, stem activities, play doh

Playdough doesn’t have to just be for little kids. Here is a fun way for the older ones to join in. From measuring and mixing the dough to making a light glow, this experiment is sure to be engaging and exciting for all.


- Flour (160g)

- Salt (160g)

- Water (230ml)

- Vegetable Oil (1 tbsp)

- Lemon Juice

- Food Colouring (optional)

- Component LED

- 9v Battery Pack

- 2 Battery Cables (Double-end alligator clips)


(1) First, we need to make the dough. In a bowl, mix the flour, salt, water, oil and lemon juice together until you max a dough.

(2) Split the dough into 2 even pieces. Here you can add your food colouring if preferred.

(3) When your dough is ready, take a small section of each piece and roll them into small balls.

(4) Add the longer wire to one ball of the dough and the shorter wire to the other.

(5) Now taking your first cable, attach one clip to the + side of your battery.

(6) With your second cable, attach one clip to the - side of your battery.

(7) Holding the opposite clips, press them onto your dough balls and watch the LED light up.

(7a) You must make sure that the + side is touching the dough with the longer LED leg and the - is touching the shorter leg.

(8) Now you can test out different kinds of circuits. Here we are using 3 balls of dough and 2 LEDs. The light does not shine as bright with just one battery pack. So, we have added a second one, attaching them together + to -, then adding the clips as before.

(9) Next we have rolled the dough to make 2 long shapes and have added 3 LEDs.

What other shapes and circuits can you make?


So how does this work? Salted playdough conducts electricity. The LED bridges the gap between + and - and the light starts to shine. This is known as a series circuit. When rolling out the playdough into 2 longer shapes side by side, this allows electricity to pass through all the LEDs at the same time. This is known as a parallel circuit. The LED will only light up if the circuit is connected correctly.

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