From engineering Christmas trees to building with gumdrops and of course, Grinch STEM activities too! Who said you can’t do STEM with a fun holiday twist? Explore Christmas science, engineering, technology, and mathematics with these easy-to-do ideas. Simple materials create big opportunities for STEM learning and exploring all month long!

Explore STEM This Festive Season

Many of the following Christmas STEM activities include one or more of the different pillars of the acronym STEM. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math.

Generally, a good STEM project will include a combination of these pillars and call on lots of different skills! Read more about the engineering design process below.

These Christmas STEM activities below are really quite easy and use just a few common kitchen and laundry ingredients. Don’t be intimidated! Look around your house or classroom for suitable and inexpensive supplies. Think cups, Christmas cards, straws, playdough, and more…

I am always amazed at how much we learn from creative STEM challenges. These Christmas STEM projects are perfect for budding engineers and scientists.  They are also terrific frugal, screen-free ideas that will encourage imagination, free thinking, and curiosity in kids!

Set them up at home or in the classroom with kids this holiday season for some hands-on scientific fun! Great for elementary age and beyond!

Check out our list of Christmas Science Experiments

Use The Engineering Design Process For Christmas STEM

This season, why not pair the engineering design process with fun holiday themes including candy canes, gumdrops, Christmas trees… you get the picture!

Engineers often follow a design process. There are many different design processes that all engineers use but each one includes the same basic steps to identify and solve problems.

An example of the process is “ask, imagine, plan, create, and improve”. This process is flexible and maybe completed in any order. Read More Here.

Helpful STEM Resources To Get You Started

Here are a few resources that will help you introduce STEM activities and challenges more effectively to your kiddos or students and feel confident yourself when presenting materials.

You’ll find tons of free printables, templates, and journal sheets throughout all of our activities or join us in the Library Club for instant access all year long!

Get your FREE printable Christmas STEM activities guide!

—> START HERE: Grab the FREE STEM Christmas Countdown Challenges and Project List!

Fun Christmas STEM Activities

Our holiday STEM activities are hands-on, playful, and can be scaled for a variety of ages with more or less adult assistance, and the use of our printable materials. Look for free printable templates throughout the activities.

Santa Activities

What does Santa get up to at Christmas? Engineer and experiment with these Santa theme STEM activities.

Santa’s Sleigh Challenge: Santa needs a sleigh in order to make his rounds. But what happens if Santa’s sleigh is down for repairs with no time to spare? It’s up to you to design and build Santa a new sleigh with this Christmas STEM challenge complete with free printable worksheets.

Santa’s Balloon Rocket: A fun Christmas version of the classic balloon rocket. Explore forces as you send Santa flying across the room.

Santa’s Catapult: Design and build a simple catapult, and test how far you can fling the red and white pom and poms. Almost to the north pole!

Santa’s Chimney Challenge: Soft candy and toothpicks are a winning combination for building structures for STEM. Build a chimney for Santa. How high can you make it?

Santa’s Magic Milk: We all know Santa loves his milk and cookies and of course, he would have to have magic milk for Christmas! Explore the magic of Christmas with a magical science experiment.

Santa’s Frozen Hands: Explore how water changes from a solid to a liquid with this simple ice melt activity perfect for preschoolers.

Candy Cane Activities

A staple in our house… candy canes whether actual or symbolic, are a must for quick Christmas STEM activities.

Bending Candy Canes: Is it magic or science? Bend a candy cane into a circle.

Dissolving Candy Canes: Set up this easy Christmas experiment with candy canes. Investigate what happens when you add candy canes to water.

Coding Candy Cane Ornaments: Code without a computer, learn about the binary alphabet, and craft a simple ornament all in one great Christmas STEM project.

Crystal Candy Cane Ornaments: Why not grow candy canes you can hang up as Christmas tree ornaments! This fun Christmas experiment explores how crystals grow and teaches a little bit about suspension science {chemistry}. 

Candy Cane Fluffy Slime: The stretchiest, the coolest, the most unique-est slime that you will love to make!

Candy Cane Oobleck: Add peppermints to the classic 2 ingredient oobleck for a very Christmasy non-Newtonian fluid!

Dissolving Candy Canes

Christmas Tree STEM Activities

How many ways can you enjoy a Christmas Tree activity this season… over here we have a ton. You’ll find even more ideas for Christmas tree crafts, and more here.

Christmas Tree STEM Challenge: Get your kids off the screens and into Christmas building games with this Christmas tree cup game. The challenge is to build a Christmas tree with just 100 cups.

Fizzy Christmas Trees: Make a moldable baking soda mixture in the shape of Christmas trees. What happens when you add vinegar? A fizzing chemical reaction!!

Fizzy Christmas Tree Ornaments: Here’s another fun way to use baking soda and vinegar. Grab some plastic ornaments and make an erupting decoration.

Coffee Filter Christmas Tree STEAM Project: Coffee filters are a MUST have addition to any science or craft kit! Soluble science is combined with unique process art to make these colorful Christmas trees.

3D Christmas Tree: Put together this simple Christmas paper craft that doubles as a fun 3D Christmas tree too!

Christmas Tree Tessellations: Color the pattern and then work out how to tessellate the Christmas tree for a fun and easy Christmas Math activity.

Pop Up Christmas Tree Card: Another easy way to explore 3 dimensions. Make a fun pop up card that you can gift to a loved one as well!

Jingle Bell Activities

A fun Christmas craft item also makes a good manipulative to use for math, science, and of course a fun STEM challenge.

Jingle Bell STEM Challenge: This is our version of the classic egg drop challenge with a more Christmasy theme. Can you quiet a jingle bell so it doesn’t make any noise?

Christmas Magnetic Ornaments: Make simple ornaments to hang on the tree from a number of magnetic items, including jingle bells.

Jingle Bell Math: Use jingle bells and pipe cleaners to engineer simple shapes. Free printable shape cards available as a prompt for kids.

Gingerbread Activities

Whether you like to eat them, or just decorate them, gingerbread is a must have at Christmas time!

Scented Gingerbread Slime: Are you baking cookies or making slime? Enjoy the scented science and sensory play that is so easy to make.

3D Paper Gingerbread House: Make a gingerbread house out of paper and explore 3D shapes for an easy STEAM activity. Free printable gingerbread house template included.

Crystal Gingerbread Ornaments: Grow borax crystals on gingerbread men shaped pipe cleaners to make ornaments you can hang on the tree. Here’s another version with salt crystals.

Gingerbread House Tessellations: Grab the printable Christmas tessellations for a hands-on Christmas math activity.

Dissolving Gingerbread Cookies: Here is an easy Christmas STEM activity you can do with younger kiddos! Investigate what happens to cookies when you add them to water.

Fizzing Gingerbread Men: No baking here, but you get to observe and play with a fun baking soda and vinegar chemical reaction and gingerbread cookie cutters.

LEGO Gingerbread House: Design and build a gingerbread house from LEGO bricks for a fun Christmas STEM project.

Gumdrop Activities

Make sure to grab these free gumdrop and toothpick building cards! Take a classic bag of way too-sweet candy and put it to good use… for STEM activities!

Physical Change with Gumdrops: Investigate what happens to gumdrops when you heat them in the oven. Is it a physical change or a chemical change?

Gumdrop Bridge Building Challenge: An easy Christmas STEM challenge. Build a bridge from gumdrops and test how much weight it can hold.

Printable Christmas STEM Ideas

From snowmen to DIY Christmas ornaments to screen-free coding and even STEM activities for the Grinch… This list will continue to grow (just like the Grinch’s heart)!

Printable Christmas STEM Project Pack


  • 25+ Christmas theme science and STEM activities with printable sheets, instructions, and useful information all using easy-to-source materials perfect for limited-time needs. Includes a holiday theme engineering pack with fun, problem-based challenges for kids to solve! NEW observation sheets included.
  • Try a Santa’s Letter airplane challenge or take the gingerbread house-building challenge! 
  • Explore the five senses with a specially designed Santa’s Lab pack.
  • Try a mini nature study with your favorite type of Christmas tree.
  • Try your hand at building shapes with gumdrop structure challenge cards or build shapes with jingle bells. Or try the Christmas-themed paper chain challenge!
  • Christmas Screen-free Coding activities include algorithm games, binary code ornaments, and more!
  • Explore 6+ Christmas Art Projects with famous artist-inspired activities that combine art history, process art techniques, and more with simple to-do ideas.