Melting Point Depression 

We had a lot of fun this month with our science lesson. I love letting the kids get their hands “dirty” and using all their senses to discover new concepts. We discussed a concept most of our Tots were familiar with: salt melts ice and snow! However, we asked the question, “why does this happen?” Well…. the fancy big kid definition is:

  • Salt lowers the temperature at which water freezes, so instead of 32° it freezes 4° lower at 28°. Therefore, it has to be colder in order for the salt water solution to freeze. Thus, ice will melt faster because the ambient temperature seems “warmer” to the frozen block of ice.

Frozen Treasure Ice Excavation:

  1. Ice Excavation Tools i.e. Spoons 
  2. Container to freeze water
  3. Treasure
  4. Squirt bottle
  5. Food Coloring
  6. Rock Salt

Freeze your treasure in a container. Depending on the size you my want to fill up your container half full, freeze, add treasure, fill and freeze again. This will help ensure the treasure is positioned in the center of the ice block. 

Fill up your squirt bottles with a salt water solution (the ratio does not matter). I added different color food coloring just to make it a little more interesting.

Place your ice block in something that will contain the water, such as a bathtub, sink, or storage tub.

Before you start the excavation process generously sprinkle your ice block with salt, if you are quiet you will be able to hear the cracks and pops of the ice starting to melt. (I took this opportunity to explain that when you hear that sound it means ice is starting to melt and break apart and you should never stand on ice!) We also made observations regarding the edges of the ice block where we saw the ice immediately melting and water dripping down the sides.

From here on out you can chip and spray away at the ice block until the treasure is free. Just a note, the saltwater solution works best if you apply it to the ice block/treasure in a solid stream; the ice will melt very quickly!


Ice Cream:

  1. Ice
  2. Rock Salt
  3. 2 Tablespoons of water
  4. 1 gallon ziplock bag 
  5. Sandwich size ziplock bag 
  6. Milk/soy milk
  7. Chocolate/strawberry syrup
  8. Sprinkles

In your one gallon sized ziplock add about 2 cups of ice, a generous tablespoon+ of Rock salt, and about 2 tablespoons of water.

In your sandwich sized ziplock bag, add your ice cream ingredients. This can be whatever you would like as long as the base is soy/coconut/almond/milk . Make sure you squeeze out any excess air from your ziplock.

Place your sandwich sized ziplock in to your gallon sized and close it securely. From here you can shake, massage, bounce or squeeze your ice cream. It will take about 5 minutes +/- until you start to develop ice cream. *Just a side note the ice gets extremely cold so watch that little hands don’t handle it to long.

From here, grab a spoon and eat it out of the bag or spoon into a cup and enjoy!!!

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