Welcome Spring with this St Patrick’s Day science and STEM challenge countdown! You might wonder why I put so much emphasis on holiday activities. Kids love to learn, but not always by doing the same activity repeatedly. Do something different this season with fun science experiments and a holiday theme! Our St Patrick’s Day science activities are a fun twist on classic science experiments and STEM activities.
ST PATRICK’S DAY SCIENCE FOR KIDS
WHAT IS STEM?
STEM takes science and builds in elements of technology, engineering, math, and sometimes even art. A good STEM activity will include at least two of these four pillars: math and engineering or science and technology.
Amazingly, STEM activities are perfect for young kids because they provide so many valuable life lessons and skills such as observational skills, critical thinking skills, and design skills. STEM also provides a much-needed dose of failure before success. Perseverance and patience!
STEM RESOURCES TO GET YOU STARTED
Here are a few resources that will help you introduce STEM more effectively to your kiddos or students, and feel confident yourself when presenting materials. You’ll find helpful free printables throughout.
- Engineering Design Process Explained
- What Is An Engineer
- Engineering Vocab
- Questions for Reflection (get them talking about it!)
- BEST STEM Books for Kids
- 14 Engineering Books for Kids
- Jr. Engineer Challenge Calendar (Free)
- Must Have STEM Supplies List
WHY STEM ACTIVITIES FOR ST PATRICK’S DAY?
Why not? Who doesn’t love the magic of rainbows, leprechauns, and pots of gold! You can keep your science activities fresh all year long by adding fun themes along the way.
Adding holiday specific colors (like green and gold, and rainbows) and accessories (gold coins and little black pots or shamrock confetti) allow your kids multiple opportunities to practice the basic concepts over and over but with a unique twist. I have always found that kids love these ideas.
Make green slime, explore eruptions and chemical reactions, build leprechaun traps, and so much more!
GETTING STARTED WITH ST PATRICK’S DAY SCIENCE
Below you will find a mix of St Patrick’s Day experiments, activities, and challenges.
These St Patrick’s Day activities will keep you busy this Winter, almost Spring. I list the general supplies needed for each activity to make it easy to prepare. I love to start out our countdown STEM activities with a DIY Leprechaun Trap Kit that is easy to put together.
A collection of building supplies (STEM kit) is awesome for open-ended inventing and engineering. Leave out a themed STEM kit or tinker tray for the season and your kids will have a screen-free activity available to use any time!
ST PATRICK’S DAY SCIENCE
MAKE ST PATRICK’S DAY SLIME
Slime is so much fun for kids to play with, and a great way to learn about non-Newtonian fluids. We have awesome and easy slime recipes including fluffy slime, saline solution slime, borax slime, and liquid starch slime. Make a crystal clear confetti slime, a rainbow of slime, a fluffy green slime, gold slime, and a bunch more! Watch a cool video of slime being made too!
BUILD A LEPRECHAUN TRAP
Bring out the recyclables and the LEGO bricks, and build a Leprechaun Trap. We have a printable planning page too! A leprechaun trap is an easy and fun St Patrick’s Day STEM challenge for kids of multiple ages!
BONUS: Leprechaun Craft
ST PATRICK’S DAY EXPERIMENTS
These St Patrick’s science experiments are great for younger kids and older ones too!
This coloring-changing milk experiment is always a favorite and is so easy to change up for St Patrick’s Day science. You will need milk, dish soap, green food coloring, cotton swabs and a shamrock cookie cutter.
A fun baking soda and vinegar chemical reaction in a rainbow of colors. You will need black pots, food coloring, baking soda, and vinegar.
Another fun baking soda experiment with a gold coin hunt included! We also made baking soda dough. Supplies needed are black pots, gold coins, baking soda, vinegar, and gold glitter.
This St Patrick’s Day experiment is awesome chemistry for kids! Watch borax crystals grow overnight on these pipe cleaner shamrocks and learn about saturated solutions and crystal formation.
Here is another fun crystal experiment for St Patrick’s Day. Make a simple rainbow from pipe cleaners and grow your own crystal rainbow.
Test the density of water and make a rainbow with this experiment. You will need sugar, water, food coloring, straw, and a tube or narrow vase.
Rainbows are a big part of St Patrick’s Day. Here are several ways you can make a rainbow including with a prism as you learn about the refraction of light.
Have you ever tried to change the color of a flower? Make your own green carnations for St Patrick’s Day science! You will need white carnations, green food coloring, vases or jars, and water.
Leprechauns love skittles! This is an easy to set up science activity that gets really cool results! You will need skittles, water, shallow pan or dish.
BONUS ACTIVITY: Conduct A Skittle Taste Test
Taste the rainbow of skittles colors. Do a blind taste test and use your senses to pick out the flavors. Can you tell which color is which? Only skittles needed!
Click below to get your quick and easy STEM challenges.
A variety of new activities, which are engaging but not too long!
Leprechauns love gold! Grab some dull coins and polish “gold” for the leprechaun as you learn about why pennies have a patina! You will need dull pennies, white vinegar, salt, bowl, and paper towels.
Go on a treasure hunt with this simple St Patrick’s Day ice melt activity. An easy way to explore solids and liquids with your preschoolers. You will need a container of water, and St Patrick’s Day theme items.
ST PATRICK’S DAY RAINBOW XYLOPHONE
For this activity you need water, glass jars, food coloring, and kitchen tools (wooden spoon, metal knife or plastic knife). Create an experiment by testing out various materials on the glass jars.
For this set up I added the following amounts of water to the jars: 1/4 cup, 1/2 cup, 3/4 cup, 1 cup, 1 1/2 cups, and 2 cups. Then I added drop of food coloring to each and stirred.
If you would like to read the sound science that’s going here, click on my original water xylophone post to learn more.
ST PATRICK’S DAY STATIC ELECTRICITY
Can you use only a balloon to pick up paper gold coins? It’s all to do with static electricity! You will need a balloon, construction paper (or colored copy paper) and hole punch or scissors to make the coins.
Blow up a balloon but not all the way. Charge your balloon by rubbing it in your hair or a piece of clothing. Try to go in one direction only. Then see if you can pick up the gold coins. Read more about static electricity here.
St PATRICK’S DAY STEM CHALLENGES
This is a fun sink or float St Patrick’s Day STEM challenge. How many pennies does it take to sink a black pot? You will need a black pot, a pile of pennies, and a container of water. A fun alternative is to build a LEGO pot!
Learn about forces in motion with a simple balloon rocket. Add our leprechaun printable to the side of the balloon and watch him fly towards your pot of gold at the end of the rainbow! You will need balloon, tape, straws, string, clothespin (optional), and our Leprechaun and Rainbow Printout (download and print here).
St Patrick’s Day Coding Game (No computer needed!)
Try St Patrick’s Day STEM with a coding game without a computer! Learn some basic coding skills in the process. Use our printable coding worksheets to break the code and solve the puzzle.
LEGO bricks. Build rainbows, shamrocks, pots of gold, a Leprechaun Trap or a leprechaun.
Fling gold coins with a homemade Leprechaun catapult. You will need Jumbo popsicle or craft sticks, rubber bands, gold coins, large bottle cap, and heavy-duty glue. See the basic catapult set up, click here.
Pot-O-Gold Pulley System
Build a homemade pulley system and use it to move your treasure. You will need recycle bin items, small black pot, string or rope, pulley mechanism (optional but can be found inexpensively for clotheslines in the hardware store.) See our mini pulley system setup and larger pulley system setup.
A fun St Patrick’s Day number puzzle! Make your very own lucky magic cube with your own little leprechauns. You will need wood blocks, tape or glue, and our printable sheets.
We hope you have found a few activities to try! Countdown with us and ensure your leprechaun trap is ready for the night before St Patrick’s Day. They are pretty tricky little men, though, to catch!
Click on the images below for more fun St Patrick’s Day ideas for kids.