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Melting Christmas Tree Experiment

What kid doesn’t like to put on their mad scientist hat and perform a magic chemistry experiment? This is a fun science experiment with a holiday twist. Combining chemistry and creativity, these fizzy eruptions can be made into any seasonal theme! We colored our baking soda green, formed trees with paper plates for Christmas and adding some solution, we watched this melting Christmas tree experiment unfold before our eyes!

Supplies

  • Paper plates to make into a cone shape
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Water
  • Sequins
  • Food Coloring
  • Bowl/Spoon/Tray to put in the freezer
  • Squirt bottle/eyedropper/baster

Instructions

Tear each paper plate in half, form a cone. Make as many as desired. We taped ours together on the side and top to be sure none of our solution would come out.

Pour desired amount of baking soda into a bowl (dependent on how many cones you made).

Add desired food coloring and water. You want to make a moldable solution, but not a solution that turns into oobleck! Slowly add water so that you can pack it together and it doesn’t fall apart. The more soupy it is, the less it will fizz also.

Add glitter and sequins if desired.

Pack the baking soda mixture tightly into cone shapes. Freeze for a few hours or make the day before (we froze ours overnight). The more frozen they are, the longer it will take to melt the trees!

Take out your trees when they have at least been in the freezer for a few hours. They are ready! They can be let out for a bit first if you need them to warm up a bit and your activity time is limited.

Set out a bowl of vinegar and a baster/eyedropper/squirt bottle for the kids to melt their baking soda Christmas trees. If you need to speed up the process, add a bit of hot water to the vinegar!

We had a good time watching the trees “fall down”! This experiment is about the baking soda and vinegar. The baking soda is a base and the vinegar is the acid. When you combine the two, you produce a gas called carbon dioxide. You can see, hear, feel and smell the chemical reaction. You can also do this with citrus fruit too! If you are looking for a STEM Advent calendar activity, this is perfect for one of the countdown days.


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Photos & content by: Heather Kucenski

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