Growing Crystals

We’ve been growing crystals.  The kids couldn’t believe how fast their dissolved Borax particulates reformed as crystals.  They were done overnight.
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We examined the crystals with magnifying glasses to see the specific shapes formed.

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The crazy kids in our neighborhood are always setting up little tables outside to sell each other cool rocks.  I seriously can’t believe how many nickels and pennies change hands at rock sales.  {Especially considering they could just bend down and pick up the very same rocks off the ground next to the rock sale table!}  My kids have big, big plans to make and sell a bunch of these at their next rock sale.  They’re hoping for big bucks…and not revealing their secrets of how to make them.

Growing Crystals

But we’ll let you in on the secret.

How To Make Borax Crystals

All you need:

  • Some wide-mouth jars
  • food coloring
  • pipe cleaners
  • string
  • pencils (or a dowel or short stick)
  • borax (find it in the laundry section of the grocery store)
  • water

1.  Start by forming your pipe cleaners in whatever shapes you’d like.  You can make snowflakes, swirls, letters of the alphabet – whatever you can form from a pipe cleaner.

2.  Next, tie a string on to your pipe cleaner formation.  Tie the other end of your string on to the center of a pencil.  You want to make the length of the string adequate so the pipe cleaners will hang down into your jar, but not touch the bottom.

3.  Fill a wide-mouth jar with boiling water.  Add Borax to the jar, 1 Tbsp. at a time.  Stir it in to dissolve it after each tablespoon.  You should add enough for a ratio of 3 Tbsp. of Borax for every cup of boiling water you put in the jar.  Add some food coloring if you want your crystals to be a specific color, and stir that in to the mixture as well.

4.  Now suspend your pipe cleaner creation into the full jar, allowing it to hang freely from the pencil.  Let it sit overnight, undisturbed.

By the next morning you should have some beautiful crystals!

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