Seasonal Science with Elmer’s #GlueNGlitter #ElmersScienceReady

Group logo of Elmer’s Glue ’n GlitterWoohoo, it’s time for another science project with Elmer’s!!!  Last time we made butter.  This time, we’re doing some seasonal science!!  Check out how we made colored flame pine cones, a crystal snowflake, and invisible ink messages below.

Documenting Our Experiments


Before we got started, we decided to get our display board ready.  We love the selection of Elmer’s Tri-Fold display boards at our Walmart; we always have tons to choose from.  Today, we’ll be using a basic corrugated board.

Elmer's Science Ready

We also picked up some Elmer’s X-TREME glue to attach our photos once we are done.

Colored Flame Pine Cones


Color always makes stuff more fun!!  So as you’re sitting by the fire on these cold winter nights, why not throw a few colored flame pine cones into the mix?  These are so easy to make; they literally take about one minute to make.

  1. Colored Flame Pine ConesGather dried pine cones.
  2. Sprinkle pine cones with boric acid {you can find this in the pharmacy section of most stores}.
  3. Spritz pine cones with rubbing alcohol.

That’s it!  Now just toss these into a fire, or just light the cones themselves, and you’ve got colored flames!!  Boric acid is one of several chemical substances that can be used as safe colorants.

I’m sure this doesn’t need to be said, but always be careful when playing with fire.  :)

Crystal Snowflakes


Crystal SnowflakesWe like sparkly stuff, so naturally, we wanted to make crystal snowflakes! This is another really easy project, and the way we did it, really fast too!

Simply dissolve three tablespoons of borax per cup of boiling water, then form a snowflake with pipe cleaner pieces.  Tie a string to the snowflake, then to a pencil, and balance the pencil on top of a jar with your borax solution.  As the snowflake sits in the solution, the crystals will start to attach.

We’ve made crystals using a sugar and water solution before, but that takes a looooong time.  Borax dissolves in hot water, and since you can dissolve quite a bit more in hot water than you can cold, you’re uber-saturating the water.

As it cools, the water molecules can’t hold as much borax, so it releases them as chemical crystals.  They start attaching their crystal selves to the pipe cleaner snowflake, and before you know it, you’ve got one heck of a snowflake.

We’re still working on ours; we want a super-snowflake…  You can also color the water with coloring and get a colored snowflake.

Invisible Ink Messages


Our final project was to make invisible ink messages!!  You can use a variety of materials as invisible ink, such as baking soda and lemon juice.

To start, we took a few cotton swabs and dipped them in lemon juice.  Next, we each wrote a message to each other, keeping it secret of course!

After the paper has dried, we held it up to a light bulb and it revealed the messages!  Since lemon juice is an acid, it breaks down the fibers in the paper.  When heat is applied, it causes the paper to break down and the lemon juice to oxidize, revealing the message.

Final Thoughts


There are tons of seasonal science projects all over the internet.  Many take just a small amount of time to complete, and are tons of fun.  They’re also a great way to spend time together as a family.  Some can even be used to make gifts for others.

Babydoll made a fabulous display, complete with pictures and instructions!


Check out my Google+ slide show for more pictures and outcomes!

Do you engage in any seasonal science in your house?

True Confessions:  This project has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for #elmersscienceready #collectivebias #CBias.  All statements are my own.