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Artful Ice Melting Experiment

Activity Overview

This fun Artful Ice Melting Experiment really makes science fun for kids. This experiment explores states of matter and how salt lowers the melting point of ice. Children on all ages will love watching the colorful patterns that emerge as the colored water seeps through the nooks and crannies of the ice blocks that you created.

This activity is great for all age groups, however, I would recommend monitoring the salt addition so that the ice melts at a steady pace so that all can enjoy the color mixing and color seeping adventure that unfolds throughout this experiment. It is a messy one, so please make sure to have towels handy to cover your work space in case the melted ice causes any overflow.

Materials Needed

  • Water
  • Assorted Bowls
  • Freezer
  • Coarse Salt
  • Food coloring
  • Cups
  • Medicine droppers or pipettes
  • cookie sheet or tray

How to Do It

  1. Fill various sized and shaped bowls with water and place them in the freezer overnight.
  2. When the water is completely frozen, dump the ice out onto the cookie sheet. You may need to submerge the bottom of the container in warm water to help loosen the frozen mass from its mold.
  3. Arrange the ice blocks bottom side up on the tray or cookie sheet.
  4. Sparingly sprinkle the blocks of ice with coarse salt and watch as the salt lowers the melting point of the areas it touches and creates crevices in the ice structures.
  5. Mix a few drops of food coloring with some water and place in plastic cups.
  6. Use a medicine dropper or pipette to drop colored water onto the ice structure and watch the colors seep into the cracks and crevices formed by the salt.

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