Have you ever tried raised salt painting for a quick science and art activity? Science can take many forms, and this is a fun winter STEAM activity using super simple supplies, salt, and glue.  We think snowflake salt painting is tons of fun! Wait till you see how easy it is to set up winter activities at home or in the classroom!

SNOWFLAKE WATERCOLOR PAINTING WITH SALT

SNOWFLAKE ART

If you have kiddos who love to see what happens when you combine different things, this is the fun winter art project or, should I say, winter science project for you! We love science and art! This simple snowflake salt painting activity combines both for easy STEAM.

What’s STEAM? STEAM is science, technology, engineering, art, and math. This cool project combines science, art, and math to explore snowflakes further.

Salt snowflakes makes an awesome winter art and craft, and your kiddos are also practicing fine motor skills.

While salt painting is a great science/art project for older kids, toddlers through to kindergarten will also enjoy this process art. You don’t even need to do a specific design!

If you want to learn more about snowflakes, check out these snowflake videos. Snowflakes also include some great lessons in symmetry. Did you know snowflakes always have six sides?

finished snowflake painting with salt

HOW TO PAINT SNOWFLAKES WITH SALT

Simple supplies, accessible science, and fun art! All are perfect for an indoor STEAM activity this winter. Want to make a Christmas watercolor salt painting?

 Use these ornament templates instead! Download instantly here.

YOU WILL NEED:

  • Snowflake template (click here to download)
  • Elmer’s white glue
  • Salt
  • Paintbrush
  • Food coloring, watercolor paint, or liquid watercolors (any color of choice)
  • Water
  • White cardstock, mixed media, or watercolor paper (computer paper will do in a pinch too)
Snowflake salt painting supplies and glue snowflake pattern waiting for salt

INSTRUCTIONS:

I recommend prepping these ahead of time to allow the salt and glue to dry a bit before adding the watercolor. Stiff paper is also recommended instead of computer paper or construction paper. Look for mixed media or watercolor-type paper.

STEP 1: Print out the snowflake templates or draw your own snowflakes.  Then lay out a piece of paper over the snowflakes to trace or cut out and trace around. Alternatively, you can use the printable templates as is.

STEP 2: Use the bottle of glue to draw over the snowflakes, making sure to do each small arm of the snowflake.

STEP 3: Put a good amount of salt onto the glue and then carefully pour the excess salt off.

STEP 4: Let the glue and salt painting dry.

TIP: Put the whole project on a baking sheet or tray to catch any “mess”!

salt covered glue snowflake for salt painting winter science


STEP 5: Mix a few tablespoons of water with blue food coloring or prep your watercolor paint

Salt Painting Tip: The more food coloring you use, the darker your “paint” will appear. Watercolors will make for brighter colors as well.

STEP 6: Use a pipette, eyedropper, or paintbrush to slowly drip the coloring onto the salt-painted snowflakes. Try not to drench the patterns but watch the salt soak up one droplet or two of color at a time.

Looking for easy-to-print Winter activities? 

Click below for your FREE Snowflake Mini Pack

Notice how the water is absorbed and moves throughout the pattern. You can even try color mixing! You can add other colors and mix the colors on each snowflake for a stunning effect.

Let your snowflakes dry overnight!


HOW DOES SALT PAINTING WORK?

As I mentioned above, this snowflake salt painting activity is both science and art, but what’s the science?

Well, salt absorbs water moisture because it is attracted to highly polar water molecules. This property means that salt is hygroscopic. Hygroscopic means it absorbs liquid water (food coloring mixture) and water vapor in the air.

You can also try sugar instead of salt and compare the results!

ALSO CHECK OUT: Star Salt Painting

MORE FUN WINTER ACTIVITIES:

Click on each of the links below to find more fun ways to explore winter even if it isn’t wintering outside!

Click below for your FREE Snowflake Project Mini Pack.

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