Candy Erosion Experiment


Water breaks down hard pieces of land and pulls those sediments away in a process called Erosion. So which works better? Fast moving water or slow moving water? What do you think?


Candy Erosion Experiment on Sugar Spice and Glitter

Hypothesis: First write down or draw what you think is going to happen in the experiment. Will the candies erode faster in the slow moving water or the fast moving water?


  • Tray
  • 2 jars with tight fitting lids (mason jars work well)
  • 2 small bowls
  • 2 pieces of M&Ms (smarties also work)
  • 2 pieces of soft candy (gummies)
  • 2 pieces of hard candy
  • 2 cups of cold water


  1. Pour 1 cup of cold water into each of the jars. Place 1 soft candy, 1 hard candy, and 1 M&M in each jar. Seal the jars.
  2. Make sure the jars are sealed. Leave one jar sitting on the table. Take the other jar and shake it as hard as you can. You may take turns with someone else to help with the shaking. Aim for about 3 minutes.
  3. While you are shaking, talk about where you see fast moving water and slow moving water. What does the land around that water look like?
  4. Once done shaking, take the candies out of the jar and put them into a bowl. Take the candies out of the slow moving water jar into a separate bowl.
  5. What do you notice about the 2 different tests? The candies in the slow moving water jar should not have changed much at all. The candies in the fast moving water jar should have become smaller or broken down. Keep shaking longer to see a bigger difference.


Why did the candies, our rocks in this experiment, break down faster in fast water than in slow water?

How would this experiment be different if you used ocean water rather than fresh water? What is in the ocean water that is different from tap water?

Write down your results and answers to these questions, in a discussion post

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Learning Objectives

To understand how land and rocks are affected by the movement of water

This experiment comes from Sugar, Spice and Glitter:

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Submissions (9)