We’ve been learning about The Great Pyramid in Desert Discovery from Mother Goose Time. One of the STEAM Station ideas provided in the teacher guide for week three is to make a Cubed Pyramid with sugar cubes. I liked the idea, but the sugar cubes I bought were small. I wasn’t sure how the activity would go with my young group, so I changed it up and we made rainbow sugar cube pyramids.
Rainbow Sugar Cube Pyramids
The inspiration for our rainbow sugar cube pyramids came from this block STEAM Station idea. Before painting the pyramids, the children can work to build pyramids with sugar cubes on a tray or paper plate.
First, we talked about the pyramid shape. It’s like a triangle shape and we can see each side of the pyramid.
Creating the Pyramids
Each pyramid is made with 26 sugar cubes. I prepped this activity by hot gluing the cubes together. Try to use as little glue as possible because it does show a bit after the sugar dissolves.
The bottom layer is 12 cubes. Middle: 9 cubes Top: 4 in a cross shape. Place one cube on the very top.
Painting the Pyramids
Obviously sugar dissolves with liquid so I limited the amount of liquid watercolor paints each child in order to retain the pyramid shape. Using the paint trays shown above I filled each one spot with six colors. This was the perfect amount of liquid.
Then we talked about what happens when we mix sugar and water. This can be demonstrated stirring sugar into a cup of water. I explained that we would be using *a little* bit of paint. If we use too much, the pyramid will melt. I encouraged them to take their time, dripping paint a drop at a time.
Remind the children to turn their pyramid so they can color the other side.
They did very well with this! It’s fascinating to watch the colors slowing soak into the sugar.
You can see some were quite careful and controlled with this, while others squeezed all their paint on quickly, not allowing enough time for it to soak in.
The youngest one (2 years) needed a little help learning how to use the pipette. He’s used them before but forgets. He started to “chop” at his pyramid with this pipette. Well, it’s all an experiment.
I use Colorations Liquid Watercolors. I love the vibrancy of liquid watercolors.
We put a paper plate under the pyramids before painting. The pyramids stayed on the plates to dry.
It took 2-3 days for the pyramids to harden, even the really wet one. I put them in a bag and each child could take their rainbow sugar cube pyramids home. I’m not sure the parents loved it but we all thought they were treasures!
The pyramid in the picture below was the work of a 4 year old who wanted to make sure her pyramid didn’t lose it’s shape. She demonstrated quite a bit of restraint in painting her rainbow pyramid.
Even if they melt a little, they still look like pyramids.