Learn how to make homemade salt crystals and make salt crystal apples! They were super fun to make, and kept my preschooler fully engaged for several days as we watched the crystals grow larger and larger every day. This is a super fun twist on crystal experiments with a fun apple theme.
Follow along to learn how to make your own salt crystal apples. This activity is perfect for toddlers, preschoolers, and older kids alike!
How to Make Homemade Salt Crystals
“I’m bored, mom!”
“Mom, can I watch a movie?”
This is the first year my preschooler and her older sister aren’t together during the day.
And you know what that means, suddenly, I’m her only source of entertainment.
We’ve always tried to give our kids educational activities and STEM activities to try, but my youngest has missed out on a lot of the activities we’ve done in the past, because we mainly did them during nap time.
But now that she is alone with me during the day, it’s her time to do all our favorite STEM activities for fall, starting with one of our favorites, salt crystals.
Salt Crystal Science for Kids
If you are making salt crystals, you might want to know the science behind it!
Salt crystals form when water evaporates from a supersaturated salt solution. As water evaporates, it can’t hold on to as much salt. The salt deposits then cling together and form square crystal shapes.
In nature, you’ll see this happen near oceans, in salt caves, and in special saltwater pools like the Dead Sea.
Because a lot of these natural salt formations aren’t made of pure salt, you won’t see the square shape of the crystal as much as with homemade salt crystals.
But when you look closely, you’ll see that salt always makes a square shape, unless it has something extra added like when growing bluing and ammonia crystals!
What You Need to Make Homemade Salt Crystals
You’ll need just a few things to make this fun STEM project!
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- Pipe cleaners
- Mason jars
- Plastic forks
More Apple Activities for Kids
How to Use Apples to Boost STEM Thinking in the Classroom
How to Make Fluffy Apple Slime That Will Bring the Scents of Fall Indoors
Apple Tree Life Cycle Worksheet
Step by Step Directions for Homemade Salt Crystals
Fill your jars with water and pour into a pot on the stove. Boil the water.
Once the water is boiling, add enough salt until crystals start to form on the surface of the water.
While you are waiting for the water to boil, form the apple shapes with your pipe cleaners. We made red with a brown stem and a green leaf.
Suspend your apples into each jar using a combination of plastic forks (you can use anything that is big enough to fit over the mouth of the jar) and additional pipe cleaners or string.
Pour the water into the jars.
Place in a sunny location and wait. We waited about 3-4 days for our crystals to form.
Pull the apples out of the water and let dry on a paper towel.
Examine the crystals with a magnifying glass!