Even if you take a break from formal homeschooling during the holidays, it’s still easy to help your kids keep learning! How about this fun science project/experiment?
Have you ever heard of making snowflakes out of Borax and pipe cleaners? If not (or even if you have!), keep reading to find out how! It’s lots of fun, and your kiddos will think you are so smart for figuring out how to make them. 😉
Christmas Science Experiment: Borax Crystal Snowflakes
This Christmas science experiment takes a little while, but it’s worth it to wow your kids with how Borax makes snow crystals out of pipe cleaner ornaments. It’s a little like how the Word of God makes us more sparkly—if we stick with it!
- Box of Borax detergent (found in the cleaning items aisle in most grocery stores.)
- Hot water
- Wide mouth jars such as Mason Jars
- Pipe cleaners
1. Shape various Christmas ornaments using pipe cleaners. For example, shape pipe cleaners into a stocking, star, or cross. Note: The shapes must fit into the jars. 2. Tie a string to the top of the ornament. 3. Fill jars with hot water. 4. Add three tablespoons of Borax to each jar of water. 5. Lower the string so that the ornament is completely covered. Then tie the string around the top of the open jar to keep it in place. 6. Leave the ornaments in the water overnight. 7. The next day, the Borax will have crystallized in the water and become attached to the pipe cleaner ornaments.
Borax is an example of a crystal. Salt, sugar, and Epsom salts are other examples. Hot water molecules move away from each other. When you add Borax, the molecules make room for borax crystals to dissolve. But a point of saturation can be reached, meaning there will be some remaining crystals. As this water cools, the water molecules move closer together again. Crystals begin to form and build around another item in the water, such as the pipe cleaner. This is especially true as the water evaporates.
The Borax crystals are a little like God’s word. We can read the Bible and it doesn’t seem to make much difference in our lives—not right away. But the word of God sinks in slowly. We have to have patience. Our walk with the Lord is life-long. Philippians 1:6 says you should be “confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Someday we can be assured of being complete–like beautiful snowflakes–if we read God’s Word regularly. Even though we might look like plain ole pipe cleaners while we’re reading at first!