There is so much that your kids can learn about science right in the kitchen! Using everyday items, you can engage your children in learning about the STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, and math). It really doesn’t have to be complicated! Check out these simple hands-on activities for kitchen science fun for your littlest learners.
Sink or float?
This hands-on project will mesh science with nature. It’s the perfect combination for your toddler or preschooler. And the materials list couldn’t be simpler: a bowl of water plus natural found items like rocks, leaves, flowers, and sticks.
The idea is so simple that sometimes we forget that our littlest learners are still exploring the world around them! They really are naturally curious.
First, ask your child what they think will happen when the item is placed in the bowl of water. Will it sink? Or will it float? Then, have them experiment with their found items to see if their predictions came true. This is the scientific method in its simplest form – and it’s a great activity to do with your kids.
Water science experiment
In this simple water science experiment, your toddler not only gets to play with water, but he can also practice fine motor skills. It’s an excellent activity to do outside when it’s warm. This is one of those activities that only requires a trip to the dollar store to add to the excitement. Kids love picking out new items that they can use for creative play. For this activity, you only need two bowls, ice cubes, and spoons and tongs.
Be sure to ask questions and help your child make predictions while trying different methods of moving the ice cubes between bowls. It’s a great way to model inquiry with your kids.
DIY Cloud Dough
You can make your own cloud dough with this simple recipe. It just requires baby oil and flour to create this fun substance that looks like flour, but can hold its shape.
It’s an easy two-ingredient activity that also helps include sensory play in your littlest learner’s day. Make a batch of this fun stuff and keep it on hand for your younger kids to play with while you’re helping older siblings with school.
Color Mixing Sensory Table
Sensory tables are another great hands-on idea for engaging your littlest ones. A water table makes a fabulous spot to experiment with color mixing. This idea works well for kids ages 2-6.
All you need is water, food coloring, and an ice cube tray. If you don’t have a water table, just use a large container – outside is best!
Before you start, freeze a tray of ice cubes by adding a drop of food coloring in each section. You’ll want to include the primary colors.
Then, let your child dump the colored ice cubes into the water and watch the colors mix together to form new colors.
Check out the other amazing sensory bin ideas for kids and have a few supplies on hand. These make great activities for the little ones to play with while you’re homeschooling the older kids.
Make Your Own Slime
The science of slime can be hard for the little ones to understand, but once they get their hands on the squishy slime, they’ll be busy for a while!
There are so many versions of slime that you could make. Consider these ideas:
- Sand Slime
- Fluffy Slime
- Pot O-Gold Slime
- Magnetic Slime
Make Moon Craters
Finally, what little kid wouldn’t love to figure out how moon craters are made? This project combines science with a super hands-on activity that your children will love.
Simply create the “surface” of the moon by using a baking tray covered in white flour. Then, layer on some cocoa for contrast. Using rocks, marbles, or other “meteors,” have your kids drop them onto the floured pan. They will be able to see the effect of these meteors on their moon’s surface. How fun!
Check out more fun kitchen science ideas for your toddlers at KiwiCo.
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