Family Time Calendar: Get Smart - iVillage

If winters are cold where you live, you've seen the ponds freeze over. Even if you live in a climate with mild winters, ice is all around you, chilling your drinks and filling your skating arenas. Did you ever stop to wonder what makes water freeze? Try our fun experiment, and you and your family will develop a whole new appreciation for the wonders of this cold and slippery stuff.

What you'll need:
Paper cup
Plastic water bottle with a lid

What you'll do:
Fill the cup to the top with water and carefully place it in the freezer, making sure the water doesn't spill.

Fill a bottle to the absolute top with water. Put the lid on, and put it in the freezer.

The next day, take the bottle and cup out of the freezer and see what has happened. The water in the cup has turned to ice and pushed over the top of the cup. The ice in the bottle, if you filled it full enough, has probably expanded and may have even pushed the lid off.

Why, oh, why?
Explain to them that water expands as it freezes. That's the reason for some of the nasty problems of winter, like burst pipes and cracked sidewalks.

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