Simple Toothpick and Star STEM Science Experiment

This Toothpick Star Stem Science Experiment is a mesmerizing activity guaranteed to leave kids amazed and curious about how it all works. This STEM Science Experiment will show your child that learning science is fun!

STEM Activities with Toothpicks is a captivating and educational kids’ science experiment that combines the wonder of magic with real scientific principles. By placing colored water at the tips of toothpicks and arranging them in a star shape, children can witness firsthand the incredible process of capillary action as the water travels up the toothpicks, blending colors and creating a stunning rainbow effect.

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Stocking up on toothpicks for this experiment is a must, as children will undoubtedly want to repeat this magical display over and over again. Not only is Magic Rainbow Toothpick Star Stem Science Experiment an entertaining way to engage young minds, but it also serves as a practical lesson in science, helping children understand concepts like capillary action in a hands-on and memorable way.

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Simple STEM Science Experiments for Kids

Whether used as a standalone activity or part of a larger collection of science experiments, this colorful trick will inspire curiosity and excitement in budding scientists of all ages.

This toothpick star STEM activity is guaranteed to impress! By providing your students with a quick and simple activity, you can make the most of their science time with STEM Starters lessons.

Create a star out of shattered toothpicks by simply adding water. Learn about capillary action with this simple science project that can be done at home or in class. It might even be your next toothpick party trick!

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Getting Ready with These STEAM Projects:

The prep for this kids’ simple science experiment couldn’t be easier. I quickly grabbed the following:

How to Make the STEM Star Science Experiment

  1. Take the five toothpicks and bend them until they bend in half, but be careful not to let them break fully apart.
  2. Arrange the toothpicks so they create the pattern as seen in the pictures.
  3. Fill up the medicine dropper. 
  4. Slowly add the water to the center of the toothpicks and watch the star grow! 

Creating the Wonder Star: Simple Toothpick Experiment

Creating the magic star was a fun and challenging activity. It took some practice to bend the toothpicks just the right way to form a closed star shape when put together. Once I got the hang of it, it was exciting to see the stars come together on the plate.

The colors of the toothpicks made it even more visually appealing, adding an extra element of magic to the whole process. It was truly fascinating to add water droplets to the star’s center and watch it open up.

The transformation from a closed star to an open one happened quickly, almost like real magic unfolding before my eyes. This experiment would be a hit with kids who love hands-on science activities that involve a hint of magic. It’s incredible how simple materials like toothpicks and water can create such a captivating result.

The Magic’s Scientific Basis

The toothpicks we used were manufactured from dry wood. When we bent the toothpicks in half, we stretched some wood fibers and compressed others inside the toothpick.

We arranged all bent segments of the toothpick in the center of the star formation. When we added drops of water to this bent section, the exposed dry wood fibers absorbed some of the water and swelled. As the water expands, the broken toothpicks will be forced out, forming the recognizable shape of a star.

As the wood swelled, the toothpick straightened itself.

As it straightened, the toothpicks’ sharp points pressed against each other, causing the star to open.

To be more specific, water is absorbed into the wood fibers through capillary action. Capillaries are tiny hollow tubes found in plants, such as the trees from which toothpicks are manufactured.

Capillary action, or the ability of a liquid to flow in tight spaces against gravity, happens in plants when water is drawn to the sides of tiny straw-like capillaries (xylem), which is a fun activity. 

As the water molecules move into the xylem, they pull additional water molecules because they are “sticky.” This process is called cohesion and occurs because water molecules are polar. They have a slight positive charge on one side and a negative charge on the other.

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This STEM Toothpick Activity will Provide fantastic learning such as:

1. Toothpick Bridge Activity

2. Toothpick Geometry

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3. Toothpick Mazes

4. Toothpick Pyramids

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5. Toothpick Star Science

6. Toothpick Star Trick

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7. Toothpick Tower

Here are some ideas for expanding on this scientific magic trick: see whether adding hot or cold water causes the movement to go quicker or slower.

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This Magic Toothpick Star Experiment is a great activity for children. It’s a fairly simple way to let them create toothpick movement on their own.

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You’ll enjoy the other exciting STEM activities for kids for extra science fun.

This exercise amazes the kids, and I enjoy seeing them laugh. They have never tired of showing me this experiment repeatedly, and I will never be weary of viewing it.

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Toothpick and STEM Science Experiment

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Active Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated Cost: $1.00

This fun and simple STEM Science experiment will teach your child how capillary action works as the toothpicks expand when water drops are added.

Materials

  • 5 toothpicks
  • Small Plate

Tools

  • Medicine Dropper
  • Water

Instructions

  1. Gently bend the five toothpicks until they fold in half, careful not to break them completely.
  2. Arrange the toothpicks to form the STAR pattern, which is similar to the photo.
  3. Fill the medicine dropper with water.
  4. Slowly add the water to the center of the toothpicks and watch as the star shape expands!

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