To celebrate Roald Dahl Day on the 13th September, I’ve put together a fun collection of Roald Dahl science activity ideas.

My 8 year is currently devouring Roald Dahl books and I remember spending many happy hours reading them as a child so this collection has been so much fun to put together. It’s not quite complete and I will be adding to it over the next few weeks so do pop back soon.

We’ve also got some easy Roald Dahl themed fine motor control activity ideas suitable for younger children.

If you like the idea of edible experiments for kids, you’ll love my new book Snackable Science!

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Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Activities

Chocolate covered strawberries and changes of state

Learn about changes of state by melting chocolate and then using it to cover strawberries. You could investigate whether the chocolate becomes solid again faster in or out of a fridge.

Extension ideasCharlie and the Chocolate Factory Science

Try adding a little golden syrup to the chocolate, does this affect the texture and taste?

chocolate covered strawberries

Photo thanks to The Crazy Kitchen

Making Giant Sweets

Investigate how to make your sweets bigger, by leaving them cold and warm water for a couple of hours. What happens? Our gummy bear doubled in size!

Extension Ideas

Try different types of sweets and compare the changes.

Gummy sweets soaked in water so they expand.

Skittles Experiment

Place some coloured sweets in water and watch as the colour leaves the sweets. Try using warm water to see if the change happens faster.

Skittles Experiment - plate with colourful skittles.

More Skittle Ideas

Can you see the floating ‘S’ on the water? This should separate from the skittle as the outer coating of the skittle starts to break down. Can you find any other sweets this works with? How about M&Ms?

Skittles Experiment - colourful skittles display

Shrinking Crisp Packets!!!

Do you remember the part of the story where Mike TV shrinks himself? Why not try this fun crisp packet shrinking activity from The Mad House, or can you dehydrate some grapes to make raisins?

If you don’t fancy shrinking crisp packets we’ve used shrinky art sheets before to make key rings and they worked really well.

Willy Wonka Playdough

I love, love, love this Willy Wonka inspired play dough from The Imagination Tree.

Try smelling it, mixing the colours or use forces to squash, push and pull it. A fun idea is to make a shape using the least number of movements you can.

willy wonka play dough

Make Your Own Great Glass Elevator

Can your design a pulley system to lift a homemade elevator?

What materials could you use to make your elevator see through?

Georges Marvellous Medicine Experiments – Roald Dahl Science Experiments

Making potions

Make a delicious ( or disgusting ) smelling potion using herbs and flowers from the garden.

magic potion

Smelling Jars

Add some scents to small jars and see if children can guess the smell. We used lemon juice, lime juice,  vanilla essence and peppermint essence.

The Enormous Crocodile Activities


The Enormous Crocodile camouflages himself throughout the story so the children don’t spot him. Can you experiment with camouflage? Try leaving different coloured wool threads in the garden, which are the hardest to find?

Can you camouflage an object so it’s hard for a friend to find.

The Enormous Crocodile See Saw

The Enormous Crocodile pretends to be a see saw in part of the story, can you build a see saw from recycled materials?

Danny the Champion of the World Activities

Can you design a pheasant catching device? Would you entice the pheasants into a box using a certain smell or food or would you make a friendly trap?

James and the Giant Peach Activities

Can you make a peach fly using helium filled balloons, or can you make a parachute for a peach?

Make a Wormery

Learn about earthworms by making your own wormery.

Homemade wormery

The Twits Activities

Mr Twit has a dirty beard with bits of food clinging to it. Discover what happens when food decays in this rotting apple investigation.

Make wormy spaghetti

Make some wormy spaghetti like Mrs Twit did for Mr Twit. To make this simply cook spaghetti in water and a bit of food colouring and add some pretend worms and a little vegetable oil for a fun sensory activity.

Roald Dahl Science Mr Twit's Wormey Spaghetti - slimy sensory tray for kids

How to make worms from juice

Teach Beside Me makes some fantastic worms from juice!

Make glue and an upside down house

Muggle Wump turns The Twits house upside down using Hug-Tight Sticky Glue. Can you investigate which sticky substance makes the best glue to turn a dolls house upside down? We tried blu-tack, glu-dots and sellotape.

The Twits House - Roald Dahl Science Experiment - make glue for an upside down house

You can also make glue from milk! Try investigating how long this will hold a piece of dolls furniture upside down for.

The BFG Activities

Dream Jars

The BFG blows dreams from bottles into children’s rooms, I imagine these bottles to be filled with a sparkly, glittery potion, maybe a bit like this lava lamp? What do you think?

Lava lamp dream jar - road Dahl Science

Could you make a nightmare version using black or dark green food colouring?

How tall is the BFG?

Sophie fits inside the BFG’s shirt pocket, if she is the size of an average 8 year old, how tall ( roughly ) do you think the BFG is?

Did you know human arm span is often equal to height. You can test yours with this simple ape index activity. Do you think the BFG would have a similar ape index to humans?

Matilda Activities

Matilda reads a lot of books but did you know you can stack books on eggshells without them breaking?

Books on an egg

Do you remember the part where Miss Trunchbull swings Amanda Thripp around be her pigtails? Can you fill up a bucket of water and swing it around in a circle over your head without the water spilling?

The reason this works is down to centripetal force. If the rate of rotation is high enough that the centripetal force is at least as great as gravity the water won’t spill out of the bucket.

Photo coming soon!

More Roald Dahl Science Activities

This is actually not a book I have read, but I noticed Rainy Day Mum has some lovely Minpin inspired post on her site.

Anna at The Imagination Tree has a great post about her Willy Wonka inspired birthday party.

If you need a costume for World Book Day, how about this Fantastic Mr Fox  mask from Red Ted Art.

Which is your favourite Roald Dahl book?

Can you think of any more Roald Dahl science experiments for us?

Easy Roald Dahl themed science experiments for kids. Build an upside down house for the Twits. a camouflage for The Enormous Crocodile, Giant Sweet for Willy Wonka and lots more science for kids  #RoaldDahl #Scienceforkids #Scienceexperiments

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Originally posted at Science Sparks