Winter Break Fun – Suspensions!

Growing Crystal Snowflakes

Over winter break, Lewiston’s 4-H Community Central Science scientists took advantage of the extra time for science exploration.

Ball jars holding snowflake shapes in water and borax mixture.
Chenille stems floating in a Borax/hot water suspension.

A suspension of Borax in water was made. A suspension is a mixture that has solid particles that will separate. Hot water was used so the Borax would stay suspended in the water for a longer amount of time.

Each young scientist made a shape for their snowflake out of chenille stem. This was held into the suspension by a pencil. As the water cooled, the Borax crystals clung to the snowflake shape. The next day, we had some awesome snowflakes!

Crystal snowflakes hanging in the office
Some of the finished snowflakes!

These young scientists are excited for new sessions to start in January: Happy 2016!

For more information about Community Central, please contact Kristy L Ouellette, PI of the Maine 4-H Community Central Program

Community Central a project funded by the USDA’s Children, Youth, and Families at Risk (CYFAR) Sustainable Community Projects program.