This project would be great to use with a shape theme unit or a flower theme! You can adapt it for whichever you’d like to do. Plus, it’s just a really neat science project for kids!
Shape Science Experiment or Make Your Own Flower T-Shirt for Kids
- T-shirt or other material
- Rubber band
- Permanent markers
- Rubbing alcohol
- Buttons or small lids (to use as a circle template)
1) You need a lightly-colored or white t-shirt. Slide a cup (open-side facing up) under the shirt where you would like to put your flower. Use a rubber band to secure the shirt around the cup.
2) Put a button or small lid in the center of the circle. Using PERMANENT markers, make dots around the button. We put our dots pretty close together. You could also experiment and freehand other shapes and forms (hearts, squares, diamonds, etc.).
3) Use a dropper and squeeze out about 20 drops of rubbing alcohol in the middle of the flower (where the button was placed). The color from the markers will be pushed outward to form a circular pattern. If you want a bigger circle, squeeze more drops onto the t-shirt. If you want a smaller flower, use fewer drops the next time!
4) Let the area dry, remove the cup, and decide where you want your next circle (or other shape). Repeat the process above. If you want to make flowers, place paper towels or a magazine inside the shirt and draw on the stems. When the shirt has dried, place in the dryer on high heat for 20 minutes to set the design.
I will tell you that these faded pretty quickly. There were some suggestions to wash the shirts with vinegar to “set” them. I did not try that, so I can’t give you any other hints than wash them in cold and infrequently to preserve the color! If you have suggestions, feel free to share in the comments below.