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How to Grow Your Own Crystals

SAFETY FIRST: Ask an adult to help with tools you haven't used before.

It might seem like magic, but all you’re doing is collecting salt crystals from evaporated salt water. (It’s still cool!)


  • Salt
  • 4 cups of water
  • Tablespoon
  • Wooden spatula
  • Saucepan
  • Heat-safe glass jar
  • String
  • Paperclip
  • Pencil
  • Food coloring (optional)


1. With the help of an adult, bring the water to a boil in the saucepan. Fill the jar with the hot water.

2. Add salt to the hot water one tablespoon at a time until no more salt can dissolve into the water. Stir each time you add the salt until it fully dissolves. It will take about one tablespoon of salt for every ounce of water.

3. Tie one end of the string to the middle of the pencil. Attach the paperclip to the other end, which will keep the string hanging straight in the jar.

4. Place the pencil on top of the jar so the string hangs down into the middle of the jar. If the paperclip touches the bottom of the jar, it is too long. To add color to your crystals, put a few drops of food coloring in the water.

5. Put the jar in a warm place. Within a few days, the water will start to evaporate and you will see your salt crystals forming. The longer you let it sit, the more crystals you will grow.

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