Investigating the Properties of Water Julia Carletti and alexa abely

Water on a Penny

The water forms a dome-shaped bubble over the penny due to cohesion and adhesion. Cohesion is when water molecules resist to separate and don't combine with non-polar. Adhesion is when water molecules bond to each other. The water refused to combine with the copper of the penny and it just built up on top of the penny.

The water that was dropped onto the penny created a dome shape on top. As the water drops began to build up the bubble got taller and hung over the edges of the penny.

penny dipped in soap

When we dipped the penny in soap and placed drops of water on the penny, the water didn't build up like it did when there was no soap. This is because soap acts as polar with the water and the water mixed with it.

Water on Wax Paper

When we dropped water onto the wax paper, the drops stayed in the 'drop form' and could easily slide around.

When water was dropped onto the wax paper, the drops beaded. When we picked up the strip of wax paper and tilted it, the water drops easily slid around and combined with the other drops.

Water Dipped with Soap

As you can see in the video, the drop of soap broke the surface tension of the water drop on the wax paper.

Paper Clip on Water

The paper clip was not floating on the surface of the water, it was being held up for that short amount of time by surface tension. If we were able to keep the paper clip on the surface long enough to add a drop of soap to the water then we would have seen the paper clip fall to the bottom of the beaker because the surface tension would have been broken.

Polarity of Water


Salt is a polar substance.


Oil is a non-polar substance. As you can see, even when mixed, the oil does not dissolve into the water, making it a water dreading substance as welll

Examples of Cohesion and Adhesion

Whether you notice it or not, examples of cohesion and adhesion pop up all the time in our every day lives.

An example of Cohesion is rain falling from the sky. During cohesion, water is attracted to itself, allowing water molecules to stick together in groups, creating the rain drops you see when it is raining out.
An example of adhesion is water molecules sticking to the ends of a leaf.In this case, gravity attempts to bring the water on the leaf down to earth, but the positive and negative molecules of the water are attracted to the positive and negative molecules in the leaf, causing it to stay on the needle.

How are these Properties of Water Significant to Living Things?

The Disolving Property of Water

Whereever water goes, it carries dissolved chemicals, minerals and important nutrients that are used to support living things. For example, it can carry the food/ nutrients a plant needs to perform photosynthesis and grow. Water dissolves more substances than any other liquid, even the strongest acid.

The polarity of Water

The polarity of water allows it to dissolve other polar substances very easily. Because of polarity, water molecules are strongly attracted to one another, which gives water high surface tension, strong enough to support very light objects. It allows water to move through plant roots an stems and the smallest blood vessels in your body. Without it water would just disperse everywhere, instead of being help together.


Created with images by technicolor76 - "water drops" • 1929389 - "water drop hand drop of water falling" • DebAnne70 - "Drops of Rain"

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