STEM Activity: Ice Magnifying Glass

At Little Medical School, we’re passionate about fostering a love for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) in children. We believe that learning should be hands-on, interactive, and most importantly, fun! Today, we’re excited to share an intriguing DIY STEM activity that your kids can enjoy outdoors this winter: creating an ice magnifying glass!


Ice Magnifying Glass Project

The purpose of this experiment is to demonstrate how light can be refracted, or bent, when it passes through different materials – in this case, ice. This activity will allow your child to learn about optics, states of matter, and the scientific method.


Materials Needed:


  • A small, round, shallow container (like a Tupperware lid)
  • Water
  • Freezer (or cold outside temperatures)
  • Small objects or text to observe

Steps to Create Your Ice Magnifying Glass:


  1. Freeze the Water: Fill the shallow container with water and place it in the freezer (or outside if temperatures are below freezing). Wait until the water is frozen solid.
  2. Prepare the Ice Lens: Once the water is frozen, take the ice out of the container. You now have an ice lens.
  3. Observe: Use the ice lens to observe various objects or read text. The ice will refract, or bend, the light, magnifying the objects underneath.
  4. Discuss the Science: Talk to your child about how light is refracted when it passes through different mediums, such as air and ice. This change in speed causes the light to bend, creating a magnifying effect.

Learning Opportunities:

This outdoor activity offers several educational benefits:


  • Understanding Physics: Children learn about the properties of light and refraction in a fun, hands-on way.
  • Exploring the Scientific Method: This activity encourages children to make hypotheses, carry out experiments, and draw conclusions.
  • Inspiring Future Careers: Hands-on activities like this can inspire children to explore potential careers in fields such as physics, environmental science, or optometry.

Remember, safety first! Always supervise your children during STEM activities.


Join us at Little Medical School, where we turn learning into an adventure, inspiring the next generation of healthcare professionals. Enjoy exploring the world with your ice-magnifying glasses!