Soap films masterclass

What can soap films tell us about motorways?

Key stage: 2
Subjects: applying mathematics, problem-solving


This activity draws together a range of areas of mathematics and its applications and considers how and why soap bubbles can provide the answers to some seemingly unrelated questions.

Pupils will get the chance to design and test 'motorway networks' connecting 'cities'. Through trying out different configurations of roads, pupils will make and refine predictions, responding to and interpreting data that they will collect through careful measurement.

Visualisation and generalisation skills will be used to find an optimum solution to the problem, before exploring how soap solution can provide an enlightening source of information.

The resources needed for this activity can be constructed from readily available materials, details of which are given in the teacher notes.

For further ideas and inspiration, a booklet produced by the Magic Mathworks Travelling Circus can be found at the link on the right.

Teachers should read through the following activity ideas and make their own risk assessment for them before proceeding with them in the classroom.

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