Gelatin Magnifying Glass
Ages 5 and up with adult helper

Do you know someone who wears glasses in order to see better? People need glasses because the shape of our retina or even our cornea can focus light on the wrong part of our eye, which inhibits our ability to see. By wearing glasses, we can “bend” the angle that light enters our eye so that it enters at the perfect spot which, allows us to see things both near and far in focus.

By using a magnifying glass, telescope or microscope we can use the science behind glasses to manipulate light further and enhance our natural vision. By using gelatin in a rounded shape, we can alter the way light is entering our eye and enhance our ability to see. Try this fun experiment out with your family and have a tasty treat!


  • 1 box gelatin dessert in a light color
  • cup or bowl with rounded bottom
  • Cutting board or flat piece of cardboard
  • Measuring cup and spoons
  • Writing or printed material that can be thrown away
  • Paper towel or kitchen towel
  • Glass pan, bowl or plate


  1. Bring ¾ cup water to boil in stove or microwave. Always have an adult help with boiling water.
  2. Add water to gelatin mix and stir for 2 minutes to mix
  3. Allow to rest for 10 minutes
  4. Take cutting board or piece of cardboard and place the paper towel or kitchen towel on it, and place rounded cup or bowl on top
  5. Dump gelatin mixture into cup or bowl and place in fridge
  6. Wait 6 hours or overnight
  7. Remove from fridge.
  8. Add 2-4 teaspoons of water to your glass pan, bowl or plate
  9. Wet hands and slowly dump gelatin out of rounded bowl into the glass pan, bowl or plate. Use wet hands to arrange the Jell-O so the rounded part is facing up
  10. Place the glass pan, bowl or plate on top of printed material. Move the formed gelatin around ask your kids what they notice are the images getting bigger?

More Fun:

If you enjoy our Steam Learning Lab and would like to make a donation click here. Thank you for your support!