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  • Writer's pictureCartwheels & Creations


What you need:

  • Epsom salts (from the chemist/ pharmacy in the bath salts section)

  • Food colouring

Something for the crystals to stick to

What You Do:

  1. In a clear container/ jar stir 1/2 cup of Epsom salts (-don’t go for scented ones as everything in your refrigerator will take on the scent,) with 1/2 cup of very hot tap water (-not boiling water,) for at least one minute. (Some undissolved crystals will be at the bottom of the glass.)

  2. Add a couple drops of food colouring if you want coloured crystals.

  3. In the bottom of the solution, add an item the crystals can stick to. This could be anything from bread crumbs/ sand to a bottle top. We tried some twisted wire, a shell and some pebbles. Try out different things yourself!

  4. Put the beaker in the freezer for a couple of hours and then in the refrigerator overnight.

  5. Pour off any remaining solution

Tell me about the Science of this:

  • Epsom salt is another name for the chemical mag

nesium sulfate.

  • The temperature of the water determines how much magnesium sulfate it can hold. It will dissolve more when it is hotter.

  • Cooling the solution quickly encourages fast crystal gr

owth since there is less room for the dissolved salt in the cooler, denser solution. As the solution cools, the magnesium sulfate atoms run into each other and join together in a crystal structure.

  • Crystals grown this way will be small, thin, and numerous. Left undisturbed, the crystals should last months or more!

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