Tuesday, December 6, 2011

melting ice!

I debated whether or not to post this activity???  It just doesn't look that exciting in picture form.  HOWEVER, the fact that my kids were super enthusiastic about the outcome of this science project prompts me to post it whether it looks like a great project or not ;]

We are studying a bit about fire and ice this week.  So, I thought it would be a great idea to demonstrate how salt melts ice.  We have many salt trucks driving on our freeways and side streets during the winter spreading salt all over the roads so we can drive safely without sliding into another car or pole!  I explained to my littles what the trucks do and why it's important to us.  They were absolutely fascinated by what I was telling them.  They asked lots of questions and had lots of ideas!  Some said "I think the salt is eating the ice."  And, "I think the salt gets really hot when it touches the ice." Check out the pics...
we started out with 3 ice cubes and 1 tablespoon of salt...sprinkling the salt on a little at a time.
some ice started melting right away!
others took a little longer to melt...

if nothing else...it was sure fun to play in the salt piles and water puddles :]
I eventaully added a couple more ice cubes (one at a time), and a couple more tablespoons of salt.  I really thought the kids would get a little bored with just reglular old ice cubes and regular old salt.  I was wrong, they LOVED the project and just kept asking for more ice and 'a little' more salt!  It was interesting to watch the kids take their own direction.  Some started scooping the whole pile of salt onto the cubes, which imediately turned the salt into a slushy consistancy.  Others put their ice cubes right on top of their salt mounds and watched as the ice melted down into the salt...we could actually SEE the ice melting!  Those who just kept sprinkling pinches of salt onto their ice were fascinated by how the individual salt chrystals started melting little holes into the cubes.  Im grateful this project turned out well...sometimes you just never know??? :]

A hint or 2 - Keep hands away from the eyes when working in the salt.  One of my little guys tried to itch the side of his nose and got some salt in the corner of his eye, he was tough and didn't cry but it was super irritating for him!  Also, I thought it would be fun (if I would have thought about it before hand) to either color the ice cubes before freezing them or even to color the salt.  Maybe bigger ice molds would have been better too?  No matter what it is a fun project!

Happy winter days!
Miss Lisa :]

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