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Rainbow Snow

Create a fluffy fake snowstorm in a variety of colors. It's the most colorful blizzard ever!

We'll admit, we take a little bit of offense when someone says, “Snow only comes in white.” Apparently, they've never seen the Rainbow Snow activity. If you've ever played with our Insta-Snow® powder, especially with our Color Fizzers, you know exactly how superabsorbent polymers can create a colorful blizzard of the most realistic fake snow out there.

Experiment

Cup version…

  1. Use the blue scoop that came in the Instant Snow package to measure out 1 scoop of Insta-Snow powder into the large plastic cup.
  2. Fill the small plastic cup with water (warm water works great, but you can experiment with different temperatures).
  3. Quickly pour all of the water into the cup with the Instant Snow powder. Don't take your eyes off the erupting snow!
  4. Go ahead… put your fingers in the fluffy fake snow. It looks so real that special effects artists are now using it in movies.

The Hands-on Version…

  1. Pour a scoop of powder into a student’s cupped hands.
  2. Fill the small plastic cup with water and pour it directly onto the powder. Get ready for screams of excitement as the snow erupts in your student’s hands.
  3. Catch the falling snow in a bowl or tray.  You can dry the snow out and use the powder again!
  4. If you let the snow sit out, the water will evaporate and the once fluffy snow will turn back into the dry powder. That's right… it's reusable!!!  You’ll learn more about how Insta-Snow works later in the instructions.

Create Snow in Color!

  1. Again, use the blue measuring scoop to place 1/4 teaspoon of Insta-Snow powder into a clear plastic cup.
  2. Fill a second clear plastic cup with room temperature water. Drop a Fizzers Coloring Tablet (or a drop of food coloring) of your favorite color into the cup, too.
  3. Once the water is completely colored, pour the water into the cup with the powder.
  4. Holy moly… colorful snow! Guess what?!? You can make snow in any color!

How Does It Work?

Insta-Snow® is actually derived from the superabsorbent polymer found in baby diapers. The only difference (and it’s a big one) is that the Insta-Snow polymer not only absorbs water but the long chains of molecules swell to an enormous size. The polymer soaks up water using the process of osmosis (water molecules pass through a barrier from one side to the other). When water comes in contact with the polymer, it moves from outside the polymer to the inside and causes it to swell. The polymer chains have an elastic quality, but they can stretch only so far and hold just so much water.

The Insta-Snow reaction is a great example of a physical reaction – a reaction where the substance itself does not change. When an ice cube melts, a physical reaction takes place where the solid ice turns into a liquid, but the substance (water) never changes – it's still water! However, in a chemical reaction, a new substance is formed and energy is either given off or absorbed.

If you think of the Insta-Snow powder as millions of tiny sponges, it's easy to see that neither the Insta-Snow powder or the water was changed. If you allow the water to evaporate, the Insta-Snow powder dries out and returns to its previous state, ready to be used again.