It’s Getting STE(A)My In Here

STE(A)M stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math. Its a great way to get your students engaged while also developing their love for the different sciences. Here is an activity that exemplifies STE(A)M: Gelatin Streaking!

Image result for gelatin streaking


This activity is hands-on and allows for students to have fun with the gelatin and food coloring. You can either get pre-made gelatin or make it yourself! With this, you can model different types of cells and organs, or, if you’re really artistic, have whole DNA helices or ball-and-stick models!


If you decide to go down the “make the gelatin yourself” route, you can get the students exploring the chemical reactions that take place in the process:

  • Provide different solutes/solvents to attempt to make gelatin
    • Students will be trying to mimic the properties of the gelatin with their own concoctions
    • If they are unable to make the gelatin, have them try and figure out what it is about the things that make up gelatin that give it the properties that it has.

Image result for gelatin streaking


Going into EXPLAIN, students will have the opportunity to come to a definition on what a gelatin is, and what they think gives it the properties it has. Also, students should share with the class what they had used for the gelatin and whether or not it worked.


This is the students’ time to shine! The students will be able to research different uses for gelatin in the world. Here are some areas that they can research:

  • Medicine
  • Food
  • Vitamins
  • Photography
  • Cosmetics



Let’s get artsy! Students will now do a presentation on the research they did and the information they gathered. Here’s the twist: they have to concentrate all their research down to a single image/symbol, and try to make the symbol in the gelatin! Students will be graded based on the thoroughness of the presentation and the amount of effort they put into their gelatin-based masterpiece.


Science & Art Activity for Kids: Gelatin Streaking. (n.d.). Retrieved from





  1. Hey Bryce,

    I can echo Katie’s feeling about your evaluate – I love the artistic and fundamentally creative aspects behind it. We do a similar thing in the 181 Lab but with Play-doh and them modeling what science is into an image.

    Do you think gelatin might be too rigid to model biological cells? I’m not sure what alternatives there might be, though, either. It could also be used in Earth Science (if you can make a little more fluid gelatin) to model how Earth’s mantle works! I think gelatin lends itself to a wide variety of uses and I think it’s cool the manner in which you chose to use it – it’ll just be hard for you to demo though since you hate its texture so much!

  2. Bryce, I love this idea!! I have never seen this activity before and your blog makes me want to implement it into my future classroom! I would probably use it to model different types of cells, or even the different organelles!
    You have a solid 5E learning cycle here! My question for you would be, what materials would you provide for the explore? You said you would provide different solutes/solvents, I was just wondering what those would be and what combination you would include that would end up as gelatin?
    Also, I think this would be a great activity for students to do in groups! 1.) that would be less materials that you would have to worry about providing 2.) this implements cooperative learning into your classroom 3.) students would be able to bounce ideas off of each other when coming up with a combination of a solute and solvent in the explore part of the learning cycle .
    Your evaluate may be my favorite part of this blog because you include the art part of STEAM, that is equally important as the other four parts, but is less known about .
    Again, great blog!!

    • Thanks, Katie! I love your idea for doing this sort of activity in groups, and I’m glad you liked my Evaluate! As for what kind of solutes/solvents I would provide, doing more research led me to the conclusion that I could only really provide solvents, as solutes wouldn’t really yield any results. For solvents, though, I would probably provide things like water, soda, molasses, and other liquids that could yield interesting results!

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