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The Mason Jar Scientist: 30 Jarring STEAM-Based Projects

The Mason Jar Scientist: 30 Jarring STEAM-Based Projects

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The Mason Jar Scientist: 30 Jarring STEAM-Based Projects

5/5 (1 évaluation)
215 pages
52 minutes
Nov 6, 2018


Fun, STEAM-based experiments and activities to do at home—all within a mason jar!

Scientific learning doesn't have to stop when kids hop off the school bus. With The Mason Jar Scientist, you and your kids can have a blast together while learning about fascinating scientific topics! This book provides dozens of practical, hands-on experiments illustrating scientific principles—that can all be done within a mason jar. Each experiment also includes discussion questions and great ideas for STEAM-based extension activities.

You and your child will learn about:
  • Clouds
  • Why the sky is blue
  • Tornadoes
  • The greenhouse effect
  • Light refraction
  • Sound vibrations
  • The solar system
  • Biomes
  • And much more!
All you need for each activity is a mason jar, some household ingredients, and a desire to learn! Packed with colorful photos, clear, information, and easy-to-follow instructions, The Mason Jar Scientist is the perfect book to get kids excited about science and to spend some quality time together.
Nov 6, 2018

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The Mason Jar Scientist - Brenda Priddy


What is weather?

Where does wind come from?

What are clouds?

Why does it rain?

You probably have a lot of questions about how weather works. Adults who study the weather are called meteorologists. Meteorologists track weather patterns and study the atmosphere. This helps us learn about weather that is coming, and what causes it. And it helps us figure out what to wear each day.

You can become a meteorologist in your own backyard with these weather science experiments.

How Do Clouds Form?

Do you know what a cloud is?

A cloud is a group of ice and water particles suspended together in the atmosphere.

Gravity brings these water and ice particles together. Scientists call this water vapor. The weight of the cloud of water vapor brings it closer to the ground where it is warmer. When a lot of the cloud melts, it falls to the ground as rain.

You don’t have to travel to space to experience a cloud first-hand. Follow the directions below and you’ll soon have your very own cloud in a jar!

Gather your supplies:

Black or blue paper

Mason jar


Blue food coloring



Small bowl

Tape your paper behind your jar. You don’t have to use an extra piece of paper, but the cloud is easier to see if you tape a piece of dark paper behind it.

Fill your bowl with ice.

Fill your jar 1/3 of the way full with water. Add a drop of blue food coloring and stir.

Heat your water in the microwave for about 20 seconds. You want the water to be about 120 degrees for the best cloud.

Spray the surface of the water with hairspray, then quickly place the bowl of ice on top of the jar.

Wait a few seconds, and you’ll see the cloud start to form.

Pro tip: Spray the hairspray directly into the center of the water and not the sides of the jar. If you spray the jar, you won’t be able to see the cloud.

The Science

The air contains a lot of moisture.

When water evaporates, it turns into water vapor and is carried into the atmosphere. As the water vapor climbs higher, it starts to freeze.

The cooler air causes the water droplets to stick to ice, sea salt, and dust, creating a visible cloud.

In this experiment, the hairspray acts like the dust that clouds cling to in nature. The hairspray helps the vapor particles stick together just like a real cloud.

Questions to Ask

What happens to the cloud if you don’t use hairspray?

Will other aerosol sprays make better clouds?

If you use a bigger container, will the cloud be bigger?

Does the amount of ice in the bowl affect the cloud’s visibility?

STEAM Extensions

Science: Add other cold things to the bowl, like cold water, ice cream, or frozen peas. What makes the best cloud?

Technology: Film the cloud as you remove the bowl from the top of the jar. Play back the video in slow motion. Where does the cloud go?

Engineering: How are the other cloud types formed? Can you make them in your jar?

Art: Draw a picture of the most common cloud shapes. What kind did you make in the jar?

Math: How long does it take for the cloud to form? How long does it take to dissipate? How cold does the water have to be to make a cloud?


Have you ever scratched the frost off a cold window? Maybe you’ve touched the frost that forms on freezers in the grocery store.

We see frost almost every day during the winter, but have you ever thought about how frost is made?

Frost is like snow, but thanks to condensation, frost appears even when it’s not snowing. Follow along with these steps to make your own frost in a jar. You’ll learn what frost is and why it appears.

Gather your supplies:

Mason jar

Mason jar lid



Blue food coloring


Fill your jar with ice. Pour a tablespoon of water over your ice. Add a drop of blue food coloring to make your frost stand out.

Sprinkle salt over the ice and close the jar.

Shake the jar vigorously for about 60 seconds.

Set the jar on the counter and watch what happens. Frost will already cling to the sides of the

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