I froze a sheet of ice to use as a mini ice skating rink, which you can see HERE.
We froze ours outside, but you can easily freeze a sheet of ice on a cookie sheet or even on a thick paper plate in the freezer. After a while our ice skating rink became a totally different activity
which was not only fun, but a cool science experiement... and beautiful too!
The scientific explanation of how salt melts ice is a bit confusing for a 3 year old so I just explained in general that salt causes ice to melt, and this experiment was a really cool way to demonstrate that!
A sheet of ice + salt + food coloring
We sprinkled salt all over the ice and poured it in piles in a few different places. I gave L a few bottles of food coloring and let him experiment with it however he wanted.
The ice started melting and cracking after a bit, especially in areas heavily sprinkled with salt and thats when it started to get really interesting! The food coloring seeped into the cracks and followed the line of the crack. The salt caused the colors to spread out like tiny branches. It was really cool!
The brightness of the colors and the instant reactions of the colors with the salt, definately played into a 3 year olds desire for instant gratification and had L playing and experimenting for quite awhile.
I finally had to put everything up when it almost melted completely.I think this is an activity we'll be repeating!
Aren't the colors gorgeous!?...with no photo editing even! :)
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