Make your own rainbow

Supplies needed to make your own rainbow


To make your own rainbow


  • Clear plain glass bowl with water in it
  • Flashlight
  • Small flat mirror


Place the bowl of water on a desk or table near a blank wall. Put the mirror in the water so that the mirror rests against the side of the bowl at a 45° angle. Standing behind the mirror, shine the flashlight straight down on the mirror.


The mirror is half-submerged in the clear bowl of water and the light from the flashlight is reflected off of the mirror onto a nearby wall, creating a rainbow on the wall

A rainbow appeared on the wall opposite the mirror.


The light you shone down toward the mirror was broken into its component colours by the water and reflected back to you by the mirror. This is what happens to sunlight. It too is broken into its component colours when it enters the front of a raindrop, and then if the angle is right reflected by the back of the raindrop.

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