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Activities / Creative Corner / Holidays

Decorating with Science for the Holidays

Have you decorated your home for the holidays yet? They are coming up quickly and if you haven’t finished sprucing up the home, why not try decking the halls with a little science?

First, you’ll need to head out to your local craft store, garden store or science supply store, like and purchase a few supplies. You’ll need some basic things like vases, candles, scented oils, holly branches and ornaments. To add spheres-marblesin the science, you’ll need some fake or Insta-Snow, Jelly Marbles, Water Jelly Crystals and fizzy tub tints or color mixing tablets. You can also use food coloring. I prefer the tub tints, because they do not stain like food coloring.

Hydrate the marbles or crystals for about 24 hours in water. The marbles and crystals are polymers and will grow 200 times their size in water. Watch them as they grow in the water for a little science lesson in water conservation and absorption.

I love leaving the Jelly Marbles clear and not colored for use with candles, but you can also color them by adding tub tints to the water before you hydrate them. To scent them, add liquid potpourri or oil to the water before hydrating, and they will smell fantastic.

Next, hydrate your Insta-Snow with a little water. Insta-Snow is a dry powder that fluffs up and looks and fcandles-instasnow-windoweels like real snow when water is added. My girls love to ‘make snow’ so make sure you involve the kids. One word of caution, the more the snow is handled, the more dirt and bacteria from hands will get into it, eventually turning the snow brown and yucky.

You can also turn the snow colors by adding the tub tints to the water before you mix it with the snow. I’ve made red and green snow for flare around white candles.

With all of your different polymers hydrated, add them to the vases, then add the candle.

For more ideas to decorate with science, head over to

Guest blogger Susan Wells is the mom to two girls, ages 4 and 8. She enjoys enriching her daughter’s education by finding the learning in everything. They especially enjoy science activities. She works as a blogger and social media strategist for Steve Spangler Science, a Colorado company dedicated to helping teachers and parents get children excited about science.

Mile High Mamas
Author: Mile High Mamas

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