STEAM Activity, STEM Activity: Growing Crystals With Epsom Salt

What Kids Learn From This STEAM Activity

In the STEAM activity of growing crystals with Epsom salt, kids learn about chemistry and the process of crystallization in a hands-on and visually engaging way. They discover how to create beautiful, sparkling crystals by mixing Epsom salt with water and allowing the solution to cool and evaporate, observing how the salt molecules arrange themselves into solid crystal structures over time. This activity helps children develop an understanding of scientific concepts, such as solubility and the formation of solids from solutions, while also fostering patience and curiosity as they watch their crystals grow.

When kids make ornaments or “crystal seeds” with pipe cleaners in the process of growing crystals with Epsom salt, they can also express their creativity by shaping the pipe cleaners into a variety of unique and imaginative forms. This adds an artistic and personal touch to the scientific experiment, allowing them to explore both the creative and scientific aspects of the activity. It encourages them to think outside the box and design their own crystal-growing structures, making the learning experience even more engaging and enjoyable.

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What We Need For This STEAM Activity

 

STEAM Activity, STEM Activity, Growing Crystals Experiment Materials
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity, Growing Crystals Experiment Materials

 

 

How to Do the STEAM Activity Growing Crystals

 

  1. Create a shape (or shapes) with pipe cleaners to use as ornaments.
  2. Attach a string to the pipe cleaner and a stick, ensuring it’s long enough to reach the bottom of the container.

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals - Hang The Pipecleaners To The Stick
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals – Hang The Pipe Cleaners To The Stick
  3. Dissolve as much Epsom salt as possible in hot water to create a supersaturated solution. Use hot water and stir until no more salt dissolves.

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Mix Epsom Salt With Hot Water
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Dissolve Epsom Salt In Hot Water
  4. Allow the solution to cool for a while. (Optional: Add food coloring for colored crystals.)
  5. Dip the pipe cleaner(s) with a stick into the cooled Epsom salt solution and hang them in the container.

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals - Fill The Container With The Solution and Hang The Pipecleaners
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals – Fill The Container With The Solution and Hang The Pipe Cleaners
  6. Leave the container undisturbed in a quiet, cool place (like a fridge) where it won’t be disturbed.
  7. Crystals will slowly form on the pipe cleaner(s) over the next day or a few days.
  8. Take out the container the next day or in a few days and you will see crystals formed.

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals - Take The Container Out Of The Fridge
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals – Take The Container Out Of The Fridge
  9. Drain the water from the container.
  10. STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Beautiful Crystals Are Formed
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Take Water Out
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Beautiful Crystals Are Formed
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Beautiful Crystals Are Formed

     

  11. Harvest the pipe cleaners with a spoon from the fromed crystals at the bottom of the container.

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals - Harvest The Ornaments
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals – Harvest The Ornaments
  12. You now have beautiful ornaments with crystals!
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Beautiful Crystals
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Beautiful Crystals

    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Beautiful Crystals
    STEAM Activity, STEM Activity Growing Crystals -Beautiful Crystals

 

 

Variations & Challenges

  • Predictions: Before starting the experiment, have children make predictions about how they think the crystals will grow. This encourages critical thinking and hypothesis testing.
  • Additives: Explore how adding a small amount of another substance, like table salt or borax, to the Epsom salt solution affects crystal growth. This can create different types of crystals.
  • Seed Crystals: You can speed up the crystal growth process by introducing a small Epsom salt crystal (a “seed crystal”) to the solution. Hang the seed crystal in the container, and new crystals will start growing on it more quickly.

 

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Growing Crystals Kits

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Crystal Growing Kit for Kids

STEAM Activity, STEM Activity - NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Crystal Growing Kit for Kids
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity – NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Crystal Growing Kit for Kids

 

4M 7 Crystal Growing Science Experimental Kit with Display Cases

 

STEAM Activity, STEM Activity - 4M 7 Crystal Growing Science Experimental Kit with Display Cases
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity – 4M 7 Crystal Growing Science Experimental Kit with Display Cases

 

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Craft Kits for Kids

STEAM Activity, STEM Activity - NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Craft Kits for Kids
STEAM Activity, STEM Activity – NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Craft Kits for Kids

 

 

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Author

  • Isabelle

    Isabelle has been an entrepreneur for last 22 years in retail and educational industry. She is also a mom to a child in elementary school. She believes that when kids are curious and use their imagination, amazing things can happen. She is particularly interested in STEAM learning (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics). She believes when children are encouraged to develop STEAM skills from a young age, they gain valuable tools to tackle future challenges in a creative, imaginative, and innovative manner. She enjoys researching STEAM and craft activities, plays, toys and resources and share with parents.

    http://steamandcreate.com Isabelle

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