Crystal Shamrock Experiment

Are you looking for a fun STEM activity? This Crystal Shamrock Experiment is great for the kids! With St. Patrick’s Day coming up, make a plan to do this science activity as a family! Crystal STEM activities are always a good idea!

We love experiments in our house! This is especially true with ones that we can do together as a family and are seasonal or themed. Since St. Patrick’s Day is one of our favorite holidays, we knew that making shamrocks at home had to happen!

All you need are simple supplies to get started on this simple crystal activity. The kids are going to think that it’s magic happening right before their eyes!

Be sure to check out my Fizzy St. Patrick’s Day Science for another fun activity that the kids will love, too!

crystal shamrock experiment

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Crystal Shamrock Experiment

This experiment is seriously always a hit. I love that we can use this as a learning lesson for homeschool or just as a fun weekend activity, too. Make sure that you plan ahead as this does take about 24 hours from start to finish to complete.

Why grow crystals?

It’s just really fun to show the kids how science works. Think back to when you were a kid…didn’t you have activities and experiments and want to learn how they really happened?

The fun part about doing this crystal activity is that you can work with the kids to do this activity and have fun with it, too.

Once you work through the steps in this crystal activity, it’s going to be fun to watch it and see it grow!

Give the kids the chance to talk about what they think is going to happen with this experiment. Have them write out what they expect and then compare it at the end to what really does happen.

Supplies needed to make a Crystal Shamrock

  • Just gather up the list of simple supplies to get started!
  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ cup Borax detergent booster
  • Chenille stems, 1 for each crystal
  • Scissors
  • Wide mouth jar or glass
  • Thread or thin string
  • Popsicle sticks

Once you have everything that you need, it’s time to make a shamrock crystal!

Start twisting the stems as the pictures show to make it look like a shamrock.

chenille stem stem activity

This doesn’t have to be perfect, so don’t stress. As long as it kind of looks like a shamrock, that’s good to go.

Let the kids have a blast with this because this is always great for working their hands and fine motor skills, too.

how to make a shamrock stem activity

Using the stick and string, put the shamrock hanging from it in the jar and the mixture. (Make sure to scroll down to the printable steps below for exact measurements and steps)

adding the shamrock to the jar

As the shamrocks are hanging in the mixture, this is where the crystals are going to start to form. If you have wait for 24 hours before taking it out, this is where you’ll have the most crystals forming.

shamrocks in jars

Do the crystals stop growing once you take them out of the mixture?

They do. Since the combination of the mixture is what is making the crystals grow, the moment that you remove it from the jar is the moment that the mixture is going to stop growing.

crystal shamrock stem

Is this crystal activity safe for kids to do?

Parental assistance should always happen. This activity is safe to make and do but make sure that the kids know that they shouldn’t put this in their mouth or have it anywhere near their mouths.

Will this activity work with other seasons and themes?

You bet! This is a great way to make this activity last and be so much fun! You can make hearts for Valentine’s Day, and other shapes, too! Once you have the basis for this crystal experiment down, you can make it over and over again!

Fun Options To Change up this Experiment

While there isn’t a ton to do to change up this activity, there are a few things that you can do.

First, change up the color of the stems. You can totally make a cute rainbow shamrock activity by doing this with all the varied colors.

Next, change up the shapes. This would be such a cute idea for the kids to be as creative as they want. Have them make fun shapes and be a part of the process.

What to do with the crystals after making them

So what are you really supposed to do with these crystals after you make them? Well, that’s the fun part! These are so much fun to make and can be made in so many different ways that the kids can have a blast with them! They can keep them in a bag in their room or make and give them to friends as cute gift ideas.

They would also look really cool on a shelf as well. Just make sure that the kids know to keep them away from their mouths and to keep them out of the hands of small children as well.

Are you ready to learn how to make these crystals on your own? Find out the steps below!

crystal shamrock stem

Crystal Shamrock Experiment

Materials

  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ cup Borax detergent booster
  • Chenille stems, 1 for each crystal
  • Scissors
  • Wide mouth jar or glass
  • Thread or thin string
  • Popsicle sticks

Instructions

  • To create the crystal structure from a chenille stem, twist one chenille stem into a shamrock shape.
  • Attach a string to hang the chenille stem in the jar.
  • Place borax powder in the wide mouth jar.
  • In a medium stock pot, bring the water to a boil. Slowly pour the water into the jar. Pour slowly to allow the jar temperature to adjust so it does not crack. Stir the mixture until all of the borax powder is dissolved.
  • Carefully drop the chenille stem into the borax solution and attach the string to a popsicle stick so that the chenille stem hangs in the middle of the jar without touching the edges or bottom.
  • Crystals will begin forming as the mixture cools. Crystals will form on the chenille stem in as little as two hours. For best results, avoid disturbing the chenille stems for 24 hours.
  • Remove the chenille stems from the jar and allow to dry completely.
  • Use the thread to hang the chenille stems or cut the string if desired.
  • Have so much fun making this crystal experiment with your kids! They’re going to think that you’re magic and are going to love making the magic right along with you.

    More Fun Science Activities

    How to Grow a Crystal Rainbow

    This is another great activity for the kids! Add this to your list for St. Patrick’s Day and it’s so much fun! Add a little pot of gold to the end and you’ve got quite a fun STEM activity.

    Fizzy St. Patrick’s Day Science

    Get messy with this simple and fun fizzy science experiment.

    Spring STEAM Activities

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    St. Patrick’s Day Slime by STEAMsational

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