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How to Grow Crystals with Salt for St. Patrick’s Day Fun

We love crystal experiments for any time of year. We love making seasonal versions of classic science experiments- especially ones that my kids love making, like crystals. For this St. Patrick’s Day, we decided to make salt crystal pots of gold to celebrate the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow! Follow along to learn how to grow crystals with salt with kids. It’s a fun twist on a classic and my kids were pleased at how they turned out.

Learn how to grow crystals with salt using normal table salt and water! The St. Patrick's Day theme makes this science activity extra fun!

Keep reading to learn how to grow your own salt crystals for St. Patrick’s Day!

How to Grow Crystals with Salt

Use this tutorial to learn how to grow crystals with salt in the shape of Pots of Gold for Saint Patrick’s Day!

Can you make crystals with normal salt?

You absolutely can make crystals with normal salt. Salt, in its natural state, is in a crystaline form.

The salt crystals are ground and purified to create table salt, but when you dissolve the salt particles, they will group together and turn back into large crystals!

You can also make Instant Ice Crystals, Bluing Crystals, Epsom Salt Crystals, or try the Borax Crystals Science Project.

St. Patrick’s Day Classroom Decorations

Here are some fun St. Patrick’s Day classroom decorations you can add to your classroom this March for festive flair and St. Paddy’s Day pride!

st patricks day wreath

St Patrick’s Day Door Wreath for the Classroom

st patricks day pot of gold classroom decoration

Pot of Gold Tinsel Tabletop Decoration

st patricks day pot of gold rainbow welcome sign

St. Patrick’s Day Rainbow Welcome Sign

st patricks classroom decorating kit

St. Patrick’s Day Classroom Door Decorations

st patricks day window clings

St. Patrick’s Day Window Clings for the Classroom

st patricks day door decoration kit

St. Patrick’s Day Door Decorations for the Classroom

rainbow ceiling banner

Pot of Gold and Rainbow Ceiling Hanging

st patricks classroom decorating kit

Lucky Hanging St. Patrick’s Decorations

st patrick classroom decorating kit

St. Patrick’s Day Banner Decoration Set

st patricks day decorating kit for classroom

Colorful St. Patrick’s Day Classroom Decoration Bundle

And check out even more St. Patrick’s Day teaching resources below!

How do you grow salt crystals in a jar?

Growing salt crystals in a jar is as easy as forming salt crystals in any other fashion.

All you need is a string or some other flexible item (like a pipe cleaner) to suspend the object that you want to grow crystals on in the jar.

Use a glass jar and make sure the object doesn’t touch the sides or bottom of the jar.

st patricks day stem challenges free

How to Grow Salt Crystals Fast

What is the secret to creating crystals fast?

The secret is creating a super-saturated solution of salt water. A super-saturated solution is simply adding enough salt to the boiling water so that it is no longer able to dissolve.

How Do Salt Crystals Grow?

Salt crystals form when a solution of water becomes over-saturated with salt. When you create a super-saturated solution, the salt crystals must go somewhere when the mixture cools and the water starts to evaporate.

The furry pipe cleaners make the perfect surface for salt crystals to cling to. Over time, the crystals accumulate into larger and larger crystals.

As the water evaporates, the salt crystals cling to one another, forming large squares of salt, just like are found in nature.

Kids will be fascinated by the ionic bonds that salt makes, creating perfect squares and rectangles every time. The reason salt crystals make such perfect square shapes are due to the type of molecular bond that salt crystals have.

Teacher Apparel for St. Patrick’s Day

Here are some of the cutest shirts you can wear for St. Patrick’s Day at school!

clover socks

Clover Socks

black clover socks

Black Clover Socks

rainbow slouch socks

Rainbow Slouchy Socks

sequin clover

Sequin Clover St. Patrick’s Day Teacher Shirt

shenanigans coordinator teacher shirt

Shenanigans Coordinator St. Patrick’s Day Teacher Shirt

lucky charms teacher shirt

My Students are Lucky Charms St. Patrick’s Day Teacher Shirt

inclusion st patricks day teacher shirt

Inclusive St Patrick’s Day Teacher Shirt

lucky dandilion teacher shirt

Lucky Clover St. Patrick’s Day Teacher Shirt

have a lucky day teacher shirt

Have a Lucky Day Teacher Shirt for St. Patrick’s Day

st patricks day alphabet teacher shirt

Irish Alphabet St. Paddy’s Teacher Shirt

math clover teacher shirt

St. Patrick’s Day Shirt for Math Teachers

one lucky teacher teacher shirt

One Lucky Teacher St. Patrick’s Day Shirt

Salt bonds ionically, meaning that the bonds are inflexible. The molecules bond using the same pattern over and over, which creates a stable shape that is the same every time.

How long does it take to grow crystals with salt?

The time it takes to grow crystals with salt varies on how saturated your salt solution is.

The more saturated the solution, the faster the salt crystals will grow. With a supersaturated salt solution, you can see visible salt crystals within just an hour or two.

For solutions that are not supersaturated, it can take several days to see large salt crystals form.

St. Patrick’s Day Books for the Classroom

Use these books about St. Patrick’s Day to supplement your St. Patrick STEM activities this March!

leprechaun trap and other st patricks day stem activities

St. Patrick’s Day STEM Activities

exploring the elements gold book

Exploring the Elements: Gold

how to catch a leprechaun book

How to Catch a Leprechaun

say yes to elements book

Say Yes to Elements

the story behind st patricks day book

The Story Behind St. Patrick’s Day

rainbow science book

Rainbow Science

celebrations in my world st patricks day book

Celebrations in My World: St. Patrick’s Day

my country ireland book

My Country Ireland

light makes a rainbow book

Light Makes a Rainbow

exploring the elements gold book

Elements of Chemistry: Gold

Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) Alignment

Use this experiment to complete the following NGSS standards:

  • 5-PS1: Matter and Its Interactions
  • 5-PS1-4: Conduct an investigation to determine whether the mixing of two or more substances results in new substances.
  • PS1A: Structure and Properties of Matter
  • PS1B: Chemical Reactions

Seasonal STEM Activities

One of my favorite parts of teaching is creating fun seasonal learning activities for my kiddos.

Do you love chemistry science experiments? You'll love this experiment on how to grow crystals with salt. This St. Patrick's Day science experiment gives a lucky twist on a classic science experiment for kids! #stemed #stemactivities #stpatricksday #stpatricksdayactivities #scienceexperiments

We particularly love doing STEM activities for kids and science experiments for kids. Today, we’re bringing a twist on how to grow salt crystals at home by learning how to make salt crystals!

We always like giving our science experiments a seasonal twist- and this time, we’re completing St. Patrick’s Day STEM activities by making pot ‘o gold salt crystals!

If you love this activity making St. Patrick’s Day pot ‘o gold salt crystals, then you’ll love how to make salt crystals without borax that makes an adorable salt crystal rainbow!

How to Conduct a Crystal Growing Science Experiment

Crystals of salt cover pots of gold with sodium chloride crystals at St. Patrick’s Day! Here’s how to complete the experiment:

Do you love chemistry science experiments? You'll love this experiment on how to grow crystals with salt. This St. Patrick's Day science experiment gives a lucky twist on a classic science experiment for kids! #stemed #stemactivities #stpatricksday #stpatricksdayactivities #scienceexperiments

This fun science activity shows how salt crystals form with a fun St. Patrick’s Day science twist.

How do you make homemade crystals?

There are just a few things necessary to make homemade crystals!

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More St. Patrick’s Day Activities for Kids

Try these hands on St. Patrick’s Day activities for kids!

st patrick stem challenges

St. Patrick’s Day Salt Crystal Science Activity

Use this printable science activity to learn how to make these sparkling salt crystal pots of gold for Saint Patrick’s Day!

how to make salt crystals science experiment

How to Make Salt Crystal Pots of Gold for Saint Patrick's Day

Follow along with these directions to learn how to make crystals from salt to create sparkling and shining pots of gold this St. Patrick's Day!

Materials

  • Salt
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Pencils
  • Mason jars
  • Paper towels

Instructions

    Boil enough water to fill as many jars as you have (we did 1 jar per pot of gold).supplies to make salt crystals

Add enough salt so that crystals form on the surface of the water. It will look like a sheet of thin ice.

Remove the water from the heat and let the mixture cool.

While the water is cooling, form your pots 'o gold from pipe cleaners. Use a black pipe cleaner to form the pot (we did a slightly squared circle).pot 'o gold salt crystals made with pipe cleaners

Use a gold pipe cleaner to create the coins in the pot.

Attach the pots 'o gold to the pencils with another pipe cleaner.

Pour the saltwater into the jars.

Lower the pots 'o gold into the saltwater solution.salt crystal science experiment for st patrick's day

Wait a few hours for salt crystals to form. Leave the crystals in the solution for longer to make bigger crystals. After two hours, small salt crystals will start to form.

Pull the pots of gold out of the saltwater solution and lay on a paper towel until dry. salt crystal science project

Use a magnifying glass to study the salt crystals!

Notes

You can leave the pipe cleaners in the saltwater solution for 2-3 days, but if you are in a hurry, the crystals will be visible and ready to study within an hour or two.

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St. Patrick STEM Activity Resources for the Classroom

Here are some fun St. Patrick’s themed STEM products you can use with your students this March!

leprechaun trap and other st patricks day stem activities

St. Patrick’s Day STEM Activities

unicorn magicoders game

MagiCoders Rainbow Unicorn Coding Kit

st patrick bingo

St. Patrick’s Day Bingo Classroom Kit

diy kaleidoscope classroom steam kit

Kaleidoscope STEAM Kit for the Classroom

clixo rainbow stem pack

Clixo Rainbow Engineering Classroom Set

solar rainbow maker

Make a Rainbow Science Kit

disappearing rainbow science demonstration kit

Disappearing Rainbow Science Experiment

fools gold dig science kit

Fools Gold Science Dig Classroom Kit

leprechaun trap classroom kit

Leprechaun Trap STEM Classroom Kit

Share this project with a friend!

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