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Kaleidoscope Science Fair Project for KidsKaleidoscope Project

Enjoy the beautiful colors and symmetrical patterns formed by a kaleidoscope by making your own.

Understand how light bounces between the mirrors of your kaleidoscope and have fun decorating it when finished.

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Make Your Own Kaleidoscope

What you'll need:

  • 3 pieces of mirrored perspex
  • A roll of duct tape or masking tape
  • Overhead transparency paper
  • Colored see-through plastic
  • A pencil



  1. Take 3 pieces of mirrored perspex and tape them together to form a triangle shape.  Make sure it is solid and the tape is on the outside of the triangle.
  2. Trace around the small triangle at the end of the kaleidoscope onto the overhead transparency paper (add another 1cm all the way around the triangle to allow for folding).
  3. Place the transparency paper onto the end of the kaleidoscope and cut slits at the corners so the edges can be folded down.
  4. Tape the transparency paper into place.
  5. Draw another triangle, making this 2cm bigger than the last.
  6. Decide what kind of colored see-through plastic you would like to put inside your kaleidoscope. Cut out small pieces that will sit on top of the transparency paper.
  7. Put the colored plastic over the end of the kaleidoscope that has the transparency paper, and on top of that add the other (slightly bigger) triangle transparency paper.  Tape the second triangle down on top so that there is still just enough room for the plastic to move between the two transparencies.
  8. When your kaleidoscope is finished feel free to design and decorate a cover using cardboard, felt pens, glitter, tubing or anything else you want to use.


What's happening?

The patterns inside your kaleidoscope are made by light bouncing between the mirrors on the inside. While you look through one end, light enters through the other and reflects off the mirrors. Varying colors and patterns are formed thanks to the symmetric pattern created by the well placed mirrors.



Make your own kaleidoscope


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