The Surprising Science Behind a Bowl of Cheerios

In a fortifying episode of the PBS video series It’s Okay to Be Smart, host Joe Hanson explains how the surprising science that originated from a bowl of Cheerios such as cereal clumping, surface tension and the Meniscus Effect, helps to explain how certain insects interact with water.

How does the physics of cereal clumping actually matter in the real world? It does if you’re a tiny insect.Take water striders. These pond skaters are nature’s Cheerios. …They can even jump on water. Tiny hairs on their legs trap air bubbles and increase their buoyancy.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails. Lori can be found posting on Threads and sharing photos on Instagram.