MELTING ICE HARRY POTTER STEM ACTIVITY
With a little ice, warm water and salt you can explore the magic behind melting ice with this Harry Potter STEM activity!
THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS AMAZON AFFILIATE LINKS
- IKEA Flisat Table
- Ikea Trofast Bins
- Wizarding World Scavenger Hunt printout, laminated (you could use ziplock bags if you don’t own a laminator)
- Salt (I put ours in recycled spice shakers)
- Water in various temperatures
- Various materials for water displacement and ice removal (syringes, a dish brush, a serving fork…)
- First you’ll need to freeze the pieces under a layer of water. The thicker the ice, the longer this activity is going to last. But keep in mind the attention spans of the ages you’re doing this with!
- I filled recycled spit shakers for our salt. They love shaking them and it helped keep the salt mess to a minimum.
- We had two temperatures of water: warm water, which I placed in a Trofast bin. Then hot water, which I filled recycled yogurt containers with. Reminder: make sure the hot water isn’t so hot it will cause burns!
- For a pop of colour (and to play on the Art aspect of STEM/STEAM,) I coloured each hot water container with some food colouring.
I’ve always thought melting ice is one of the greatest but simplest STEAM activities you can do.
First we talked a bit about ice – what it is, how ice is made and related it to the current weather outside. Then I let them explore trying to melt the ice using their materials.
When I could see they were hitting points of struggle, I would offer either assistance or an exploratory question.
- Let’s try sprinkling some more salt too see if it will help!
- Can you hear the crackling sound it makes when you pour on the salt? What do you think that is?
- Different temperatures of water will make the ice melt at a different speed, why don’t you pour the blue water and see what happens!
- This part of the ice looks thin, what happens when we try and break it with the different materials?
- What if we try moving the salt around with the scrubbing brush?
In the end, we managed to melt and break up the ice to retrieve all our scavenger hunt pieces. Some variations of freezing you could do are:
- Freezing each piece in a section of a muffin tin
- Freezing the pieces in a balloon filled with water
- Freezing them in small containers and having them hidden outside to start the hunt (great for older kids)
- Instead of using hot water in different colours, have each piece frozen in a different coloured water
Et voila! I hope you have a magical time exploring this activity.
For more fun games using the Wizarding World Scavenger Hunt printable, be sure to check out this blog post!