Christmas Mint Science Experiment

The holidays are a great time to do some simple science with the kids. In this sweet smelling Christmas Science, kids of all ages will be amazed at the colourful display of colours that smell like everyone’s favourite holiday treat, candy canes! Grab some mints and let’s make some science with this Christmas Mint Science Experiment.

Simple Christmas Science With Mints

Christmas Mint Simple Science

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During the holidays I am always looking for fun, interesting (and easy!) projects to do with the kids. Things that I can set out for the kids and let them explore, play and learn.

This activity is perfect for that!

This version is so simple, it is perfect for kids in preschool through elementary. If you are looking for a more challenging project for older kids, check out our Starry Night Skittles Experiment.

For this activity you only need 2 simple supplies: candy and water! See, told you it was super easy.

Supplies

Mint candies in at least two different colours (other Christmas coloured hard candies will work too!)
Cup of warm water
Glass or white plate

Directions

Place the candies onto the plate, about an inch apart, in a circle around the edge. Make sure to alternate the colours (red, green, red, green.). Don’t worry if your kids want to get creative… they can right after this first demonstration of the science we are exploring!

Slowly pour the warm water into the center of the plate until the bottom of the candies are under water. Don’t submerge the candies, just add enough water that the bottom of the plate (and bottom of the candies), are covered.

Christmas Science

Slowly the colours will start to dissolve into the water, but wait for it…. the colours won’t mix! This creates some really cool designs.

After this first demonstration, you can challenge kids to try other designs and create a hypothesis for what will happen based on the results of this first experiment.

Extension Ideas

Have kids arrange their candies in new and unique designs. How does this affect the results?

What happens if they make the shape of a Christmas Tree?

What other Christmas shapes can they come up with?

How does the temperature of the water affect the experiment?

What other candies can you use in this experiment to get similar results?

The Science

The science behind why the colours from the mints don’t mix is known as water stratification. The red and green mints have a slightly different chemical make up which, when dissolved, creates a water solution that has slightly different properties such as density, salinity, and oxygenation. This creates a barrier that prevents the water from mixing.

To dig deeper into water stratification, which is also why salt water and fresh water do not mix, take a look at this activity.

Another scientific property that is at work here is called concentration gradient. Simply put this is the process where molecules will move from high concentration to lower concentration areas. We see this as the colours move through the water from areas with lots of colour, to areas with less colour.

This is a fantastic science experiment to do with your kids for homeschooling, as part of a virtual school session, or as something fun to do with the kids for the holidays.

Christmas Mint Science

More Christmas Activities

24 Days of Christmas STEM Activities - Secular Holiday STEM Projects
Candy Cane Play Dough Soap and Bubble Bath - Super Simple, Only 3 Ingredients!
A STEAM Christmas activity that incorporates some art with chemistry for some fantastic hands-on learning.

Christmas Mint Simple Science

Sweet and simple science with mints for Christmas

Prep Time 2 minutes
Time 5 minutes
Total Time 7 minutes

Supplies

  • 6-12 Piece Red and Green Mints
  • 1/4 – 1/2 Cup Warm Water

Instructions

  1. Place the candies onto the plate, about an inch apart, in a circle around the edge. Make sure to alternate the colours (red, green, red, green.).

  2. Slowly pour the warm water into the center of the plate until the bottom of the candies are under water.

  3. Slowly the colours will start to dissolve into the water, but wait for it…. the colours won’t mix! This creates some really cool designs.

  4. Repeat with other candy arrangements

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