This Valentine's Day, pair up science and crafting with this simple crystal formation project that's sure to bring a little love into your home.
What You Need:
- Clear plastic lids such as the ones found on snack canisters, take out boxes or deli containers
- Push pin
- Cork trivet
- Red or pink permanent marker
- Christmas ornament hooks
- Measuring cup
- Hot water
- Epsom salts
- Cookie sheet
What You Do:
- Before getting your young crafter involved, prep the project for hanging. Place a lid on the trivet and use the push pin to carefully poke a hole in the upper edge of the rim or in a ridge. It must be above the water line or in a section that will not have water poured into it or the project will leak. Repeat with remaining lids.
- Once you have made the holes, thread an ornament hook through each of them.
- Turn your plastic lids base up and invite your young crafter to draw hearts with the permanent marker on the undersides of the lids.
- Let the hot water run for a moment before collecting about ¼ cup of water in the measuring cup.
- Add approximately 4 tablespoons of Epsom salts (you want a 1:1 ratio between water and Epsom salts).
- Help your child stir the solution until the Epsom salts dissolve.
- Line up the lids on your cookie sheet.
- Pour Epsom salt solution into each lid.
- Place the cookie sheet in a safe place. In about an hour, you will be able to see some crystals. Explain to your child that as the water evaporates, it leaves behind the Epsom salts. The salts cluster together to form regular shapes called crystals. A similar process occurs in nature when minerals in cave water interact, creating stalactites.
- It may take a day or two for the water to evaporate completely. Once the water has evaporated, carefully hang the suncatchers in a sunny window and let the love shine in!