Making Crystals part I

by Deb on November 28, 2009

I started thinking this was such a simple exercise, then we did it, and it got bigger, and bigger, and it’s still going 😀  So I’ve split the post up.  I’ll start here with a summary, the way to do it quickly I was originally going to do, then add the parts that got complicated.  That way you can choose the level you want to do it at, or do it lots of times!

Easy summary:

1.  Dissolve some salt in water with lots of stirring.

    dissolving

    Big girl (4) has hot water and salt, baby girl (1) has cold water and brown sugar.  A big container is better for enthusiastic stirring!

    2.  Pour it into containers, we used a range of flat and tall.  The tall ones we hung a pin into, to make somewhere for the crystals to grow.

    evaporating

    The salt on the right is all the extra salt big girl poured into her container that she couldn’t dissolve!  We scooped it out with only a little bit of water and used it too.

    3.  Put them somewhere they can evaporate.  These are under an airconditioner, I left them there for a while because the girls were excited and wanted to watch them.  The next morning we took them outside into the sun.  The only thing to be aware of here is ants if you use sugar – try putting them on a plate of water.  One of ours got knocked over, but that just added to the fun.

    outside

4.  Have a look at the crystals.

crystals

Tips:

  • Hot water dissolves more, but warm or cold is fine if you want really little ones to stir.
  • The more you can dissolve the better it works.
  • Try adding food colouring to make it more interesting.
  • Wide flat containers and a shallow mixture evaporates quicker so you’ll see the best results that way.

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