The coolest chemistry!

With the winter holidays approaching fast, we look at the coolest chemistry; ideas you can mess around with at home and that the kids can join in with!

coolest chemistry frozen bubble

Frozen bubbles:

There’s something pretty magical about frozen bubbles! You can make your own bubble solution with water, washing liquid and corn syrup but from my research around the internet the ready made stuff you buy in pots works just as well for this.  As the bubble gently freezes you can actually watch the crystals form. It’s just beautiful!

Some tips I found:

  • The colder the temperature the better.  Makes sense!
  • Find an area that is sheltered from the wind. Even the slightest breeze will carry your bubble.
  • Blow the bubbles high in the air so that as they float to the ground they have time to freeze.
  • Depending on your temperature/weather ~ it can take anywhere from a few seconds to a few moments for the bubbles to freeze and start forming crystalline patterns.
  • It seems there is the most success with catching bubbles on the bubble wand.  Most of the ones that fall to the ground shatter.
  • Try blowing bubbles early in the morning or in the evening.  This is the colder part of your day and will help your bubbles stay frozen.
  • Wave your wand instead of blowing into the wand to make bubbles.  The warm air from your lungs causes the bubble to take longer to freeze
  • Patience and persistence.

(some info and image shared from a blog at – with our thanks)

magic snow paint 2

Magic Snow Paint:

This is such a simple idea but it’s so much fun, and gives the kids some real mystery and magic to play with!  I’d recommend making your preparations outside in the snow, scattering the baking soda when the kids aren’t looking, with the best results on packed snow that’s been outside for a day or two.  Fresh snow doesn’t work quite so well with this.  The kids then go hunting with their magic snow paint for the very special magic snow!

To make the magic paint all you need are the few very basic ingredients here, and a container.  My online research tells me that spray bottles work the best for this but a squirt bottle will still be good too!

  • Vinegar
  • Food Colouring
  • Baking soda

You’ll need quite a lot of vinegar for this, but fill your bottles with it and add a few drops of your chosen food colouring and that’s it for this part.  Be prepared to make more as it’s lots of fun and refills will probably be demanded!
Once your magic paint is mixed you can get to work outside causing all kinds of magical eruptions in the snow!  The vinegar reacts with the baking soda to form a whoooosh of fizzing bubbling snow that the kids will adore!

snow marbles

Ice bowling:

This is so very simple but loads of fun!  All you need is a few regular balloons, water and some food colouring.

It’s easiest to colour your water in a jug with just a few drops of food colouring before you fill the balloon but you can fill the balloon right from the tap and then drop the colour in afterwards but that can get fiddly!

Fill your balloon with the coloured water so that it’s nice and round, and tie the top securely.  Place your balloon outside in the snow – try and get it nestled in so that it sits in a round shape rather than a teardrop as it will make your ice bowling ball easier to roll – and leave it overnight to freeze.

Once it’s frozen solid cut the balloon away and you’re left with a brightly coloured ice bowling ball! You can have hours of fun with these – they make great bodies for miniature snowmen and women too!