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Can You Paint with Red Hots?

Red Hots have been around since 1932 and have become quite famous! But, did you know that these spicy sweets can be used for more than just snacking? Let’s use them for a STEM Challenge that invites students to get inspired to paint.

For this challenge, students will make paint out of Red Hots. Are you up for the challenge?

What you need per group...

  • Red Hots
  • 2 Cups Or Glass Jars
  • Hot Water
  • Paint Brushes
  • Timer

What you need per student…

What you need to do...

  • Start by breaking students up into groups of three to four or solo if distance/virtual learning.
  • Have students create a team name.
  • Tell students that the objective of this challenge is to make paint out of Red Hots.
  • Give each group of students the materials needed.
  • Have students write down their team name on their Creator Sheets.
  • On their Creator Sheets, have students start brainstorming how long they should leave the Red Hots to soak in water and how many Red Hots they will need, before it turns to a dark red and a light red color.
  • Students should now share their ideas with their group and combine ideas to make the best decision on how many and how long to let the Red Hots sit in the water. (they only get once chance for dark and one chance for the light red).
  • Students will record their hypothesis on the Can You Paint with Red Hots? Creator Sheet.
  • After students have decided on the set time and how many Red Hots, students need to gather materials.
  • Students will then count out the Red Hots and place in the two separate cups/glass containers (make sure the cups are labeled for which one will be dark and light).
  • Students will then add the hot water to one of the cups only, and then start their timer!
  • Once the timer goes off, students will take a paint brush and put it into the water and then under the correct heading on their Creator Sheet, draw a smiley face.
  • Students will then make notes on if the time and amount of Red Hots worked with their hypothesis.
  • Repeat adding hot water, painting, and writing down notes on hypotheses for the second cup.
  • Students will then make a note on changes they might make if allowed to do the experiment again. 
  • If time allows, students can paint using another piece of paper with the “Red Hot Paint”

We would love to see you try this STEM Challenge. Share your results with us through social media! 

Happy Making,

Maker Maven

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