Use ice to explore color mixing and states of matter. If you’re wondering how your child can use an ice cube to create colors – it’s simple. The ice isn’t the regular run-of-the-mill clear cube. Instead, your child will help you to make a batch of rainbow-hued ice to use for this summer activity. As your child goes through this project, help her to explore the process she’s engaging in. Ask questions, encourage her to ask her own questions and remind her that there’s no ‘right’ result. In the end her craft may look fairly abstract (chances are almost 100 percent that it will). And, that’s perfectly ok!
Here’s What You Need:
· 1 ice cube tray
· Food coloring
· Thick white paper – Use something matte, such as card stock. Avoid shiny poster board paper (the color will run too quickly on a slick surface).
· Optional: Salt
Here’s What to Do:
1. Squeeze a drop or two food coloring into each compartment of the ice cube tray. Try making each section a different color. Add another layer to this step and mix the primaries (red, blue and yellow) into the secondaries (purple, green and orange).
2. Add water to each compartment. Putting the tray under a running faucet may cause the colors to splash everywhere. Reuse an old water bottle, filling it up and gently adding the liquid to each color.
3. Freeze the ice cubes.
4. Place the paper on a table or another work surface (and outdoor patio is an easy-to-clean option). Ask your child to predict what she thinks will happen when she puts the colorful cubes on the paper. Also ask what will happen when two different colors of cubes meet up.
5. Pop the frozen color cubes out. Let each rest in its tray compartment (if you toss them into one big bowl or put them on a plate the colors will start mixing before your child is ready).
6. Line the cubes up at the top of the paper. Get ready, set and go!
7. Push the cubes down the length of the paper, making streams of rainbow lines. Your child can also try lifting one end of the paper to make the cubes slide. Watch as they melt and the colors begin to mix together during the race.
8. Optional: Sprinkle salt on a cube or two to see what happens. Question your child before, asking her if she thinks it will make the ice melt slower or faster.
Your child can repeat the ice art activity until it’s all melted. Try other configurations of cubes or stack them into a pyramid (and see what happens as they melt away). If the ice isn’t exactly melting, your child can chip and flake it onto the paper with the end of a spoon.
Are you looking for more summer at? Follow my Pinterest board for activity ideas!