Observations and results
How much water were you able to collect? You can try leaving it for longer and see how much more you can accumulate.
Not everything can be separated out from water this way. Tiny particles, such as dust or chemical pollutants, can still find their way up into the sky. In fact, raindrops form around small pieces of dust in the clouds, and polluting "acid rain" can contain chemicals from burning fossil fuels.
What are other ways you can think of to purify water?
Share your water cleaning observations and results! Leave a comment below or share your photos and feedback on Scientific American's Facebook page.
Don't drink the water, but you can use it to water plants! You can use the moist dirt for houseplants, outdoor plants or to start a new plant from seed.
More to explore
"Sour Showers: Acid Rain Returns" from Scientific American
"Warmer Climate Produces Less Rain" from Scientific American
The Water Cycle game from the Environmental Protection Agency
"What Is Acid Rain?" overview from the Environmental Protection Agency
A Drop of Water by Gordon Morrison, ages 4–8
The Water Cycle: Evaporation, Condensation & Erosion by Rebecca Harman, ages 9–12
High Seas: What Happens When the Glaciers Melt?
What you'll need
• Small bowl
• Ice cubes
• Modeling clay
• Warm water