Chemistry is Colorful

  • Chemistry is Colorful
NISE Network product

Chemistry is Colorful encourages visitors to explore materials through paper chromatography. This process highlights the properties of different pigments blended together in a marker by creating a colorful chromatogram. Can participants solve the mystery of which ink came from which marker? 



Big Idea

Learners will increase their feelings of interest in chemistry through hands-on interaction and observation of phenomena, and by exploring chemistry concepts and making connections to everyday life.

Learners will increase their understanding of the relevance of chemistry by exploring the applications of chemistry.

Learners will increase their sense of self-efficacy related to chemistry through hands-on interaction, experimenting with variables, by successfully doing and understanding the activity.

Learning Goals

Learners will explore chemistry concepts, tools, and practices:

  • Chemists study how different materials behave and change, and how materials interact with each other.
  • Chemistry can help us understand our world and solve challenges.



Developed for the NISE Network with funding from the National Science Foundation under Grant Number DRL 1612482. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the National Science Foundation. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this product are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Foundation.

Owning institution

Museum of Science, Boston

Development Process

NISE Network products are developed through an iterative collaborative process that includes scientific review, peer review, and visitor evaluation in accordance with an inclusive audiences approach. Products are designed to be easily edited and adapted for different audiences under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike license. To learn more, visit our Development Process page.