Pepper experiment -

Direct Instruction

The learning intention for this lesson was to learn about the effect of detergent on germs.

The video shows my focus group doing a practical science experiment using a range of materials in pairs to demonstrate how soap or detergent takes germs away using black pepper to represent the germs.

They used a toothpick covered in detergent to dip into the black pepper and then they watched it dissipate.

Extended plan here


On reflection I tried to give each child a task to carry out so that they felt they were involved in the process. Encouraging repetition of new words and adding language to a young child's vocabulary is also crucial to the learning intention of this focus group. Sharing and turn taking of the materials is also important as it develops social skills needed for co operation.

Things to note

Have a discussion prior to the actual experiment is carried out. Talk about predictions and making a hypothesis before the Science experiment begins. What does this mean? This was not included in the video. The prompt question to use: what do you think will happen before we add the toothpick to the water?

Class Site Content

Learning Intention

For children to follow instructions and listen to the teacher to carry out a practical science experiment following specific steps.


First you pour the water into the bowl. Next you add the black pepper into the water. Now you dip the pointy end of the toothpick into the detergent. Finally you put the toothpick into the water and watch to see what happens... Prompt question: What did you notice? Can you take some photos on your iPad and record what you did for each step in the experiment.

Resource or video

Black Pepper follow up -

Learner Generated Content


Blog Post


Blog Post

Manaiakalani Education Trust

PO Box 18 061, Glen Innes

Auckland, New Zealand