Pick a fun science project for the holidays! Prepare a chemistry-related ornament for your own tree or for a classroom “chemis-tree.” Marble paper for gift wrap. Sing a chemistry carol. Decide if you’d like to eat a “variegated disaccharide ‘J’ tube,” and lots more.
- Milk Plastic Ornaments
Ready, set, polymerize! Milk gets moldable with this activity.
- Poinsettia Paper Holiday Decorations
Poinsettias lend their pH color changes to these ornaments.
- Copper Redox Ornament
Kick off the holidays at the hardware store! Start with iron, finish with a unique copper-plated ornament.
- Silvered Test Tube Ornament
Test tubes aren’t just for the lab anymore. Silver the inside with redox, add a ribbon, and decorate.
- Borax Snowflake Ornament
Don’t buy your ornaments—grow them yourself instead! All it takes is borax, water, pipe cleaners, and a little time.
- Christmas Bulb Chromatography Ornaments
“Deck the hall with bulbs of color. Fa la la la la la la la la. Made with ink and a solvent water. Fa la la la la la la la la.”
Check out the ornaments this Etsy store has sold for inspiration. What does each cube ornament contain?
- Crystal Snowflake Ornaments
Forget brewing coffee with those filters—make a beautiful crystal snowflake instead.
- Elemental Ornaments
Elements become ornaments! See how these students interpreted the properties of their elements.
- Slime Ornaments
Slime on your tree? Yes! Mix up a batch of your favorite oozy goo to put in fillable ornaments.
- Shrinky Dink Christmas Ornaments
Start with a bigger idea, then make it mini with shrinking plastic.
- Chemistry Advent Calendar from Compound Interest
2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019
25 chemistry flasks on a Chemist-Tree. 25 days of molecules to get you ready for the holidays.
- Lab Equipment Chemis-tree
Ring stands? Utility clamps? Erlenmeyer flasks? Test tubes? No, they’re chemis-tree ornaments!
- A Chemical Christmas Tree
Even “grown-up” chemists can get into decorating a chemis-tree. Check out this research center’s trees.
- Christmas Tree Elephant Toothpaste
The elephant toothpaste demo goes green—Christmas-tree-green, that is. Color and shape this demo’s foam to look like holiday greenery.
- Magic Crystal Christmas Tree
“Grow” a small chemical tree using this variation on the classic charcoal crystal garden.
- The Littlest Christmas Tree
Create a tiny Christmas tree with beautiful silver branches—all on a microscope slide.
- It's a Christmas Chemistree
This teacher’s tree is a visual reminder of the chemistry his students learn during the year.
- What Is Tinsel Made Of?
The long silvery stuff has an even longer history.
- Christmas Tree Periodic Table
118 elements come together to form a colorful Christmas tree. Choose from two versions.
- Colour-by-numbers Chemis-tree
Figure out the colors you’ll need to fill in the flasks that decorate this festive tree.
- Crystals, Chemistry, and Christmas Trees
A dollar store “grow your own Christmas tree” packet kicked off a round of investigation for this researcher.
- Christmas Tree Combustion
Test the flammability of dry vs. fresh needles of a tree such as fir or pine in this holiday experiment.
- Sparking a Love for Science
These Christmas trees are going up in flame. But don’t worry—it’s on purpose as high school students learn fire science.
- Chemistry Keeps Christmas Trees Alive, for Longer
Fans of real Christmas trees, take note of these tips to keep your tree green through the season.
- O Chemistree Competition
Chemists go head to head. Or, tree to tree, in this annual themed competition.
- O Chemistree
Thinking of a chemistree this year? Look at these ideas for getting started.
- What's Special About Fudge?
Pssst… Let me tell you a secret. The secret of perfect fudge, that is. Find out the chemistry behind the candy, then make your own.
- Candy Glass Icicle Decorations
Make sugar “glass” icicles as a decoration (or as a snack!).
- Peppermint Cream Wafers
Add these to your holiday sweets recipe box. Chemistry never tasted so good!
- Partial Thermal Degradation of Mixed Saccharides with Protein Inclusions
Partial thermal what?? Translate the recipe and figure out what tasty holiday treat you’ll make.
- Construction of Variegated Disaccharide "J" Tubes
Everybody loves a good disaccharide “J” tube, right? Make your own with this recipe—can you guess what it is?
- Unraveling the Chemistry of Christmas Cookies
Crispy? Chewy? Cake-like? Pick your favorite and learn the chemistry it takes to get it.
- Unwrapping the Chemistry of Christmas
If you’ve finished your orange, don’t toss the peel just yet. Check out this surprising Christmas table demo.
- What Chemicals Will We Be Eating and Drinking This Christmas?
What’s for Christmas dinner? Chemicals! Yum! Learn how chemistry makes your meal delicious.
- Have Yourself a Deadly Little Christmas
Christmas goodies can have a sinister side. Take a peek at these past cases of treachery.
- Christmas Candy Cane Skittles Science Experiment
One candy cane creates another, going from solids to a swirl of red and green.
- Santa Slime Recipe
Why settle for ordinary slime when you can make holiday slime? Try this recipe.
- Case #1225: Case of the Christmas Cookie Mystery
Help out the North Pole Bureau of Investigations by identifying the mixed-up white powders Mrs. Claus needs to bake her sugar cookies.
- Poinsettia pH Paper
Tired of plain old pH paper? Make your own (holiday style!) using poinsettia plants.
- Crystal Frost Window Paint
Either Jack Frost came to visit, or you’ve found this recipe for window paint. Grab some Epsom salt and get started!
- Holiday Chemistry Webinar
Take a whirlwind tour of holiday chemistry activities, along with how they can tie into what you’re teaching/learning.
- Chemistry Carols
You’ve never heard “Jingle Bells” and “Deck the Halls” like this. Ready, set, sing!
- "A Chemistry Christmas Carol"
“With apologies to Charles Dickens.” Can you find the names of 86 elements hidden in this story?
- Creating Colorful Icicles
Live in an area with cold weather? Use a phase change to create a temporary outdoor sculpture.
- A Christmas Lantern Project
Use the chemistry of oxidation to turn an empty soda can into a beautiful lantern.
- DIY Holiday Bath Bombs
These bath fizzers will fill your tub with scents of the holidays. Make some for a friend!
- Elemental Facts of Santa
Even Santa loves the periodic table. Use it to help tell the story of that jolly red-suited fellow.
- A Christmas Elemental Word Search
Find all the elements in this word search, then discover the “Grinchy quote” made by the leftover letters.
- Peppermint Oobleck Science Sensory Play
It’s the usual cornstarch oobleck, but with a twist. What happens if you add peppermint candies?
- Winning Christmas Card Image
How do these scientists celebrate the holidays? With a Christmas Card Competition centered on science.
- Why the Magic of Christmas Is All Down to Chemistry
C is for candles. H is for holly. R is for… And it’s all about the chemistry behind each one.
- Holiday Gift Ideas 2020
The latest gift giving idea from ACS!
- Marbled Gift Wrap | Colorful Lather Printing
Amaze friends and family with this beautiful handmade marbled gift wrap. Then amaze them again by explaining how science makes it work.
- Gifts That Keep Giving (If Not Exploding)
Chemistry sets then vs. now. What will you find?
- Chemistry: The Perfect Gift for Christmas
Looking for activity ideas? Find out about the handmade gifts these students made at a chemistry event.
- Chemistry Gift Guide
More gift ideas! ACS ChemClubs adds new items to this Pinterest board (periodically).
- The Best Chemistry Gifts
This collection of gifts probably has some you haven’t seen before and may decide you can’t live without.
- Holiday Gift Guide for Scientists
Some fun chemistry gifts here to think about for your online shopping cart.
(all sites accessed November 2020)