Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Preschool Science Experiments and Exploration



I come from a family of scientists, so naturally science is one of my favorite subjects to do with my children.  I absolutely love watching their brains at work as we do experiments and they observe, ask questions, try new things, and make inferences - lots of fun!

I rounded up links to some of the science activities I've blogged about over the past year (twins were 2.5-3.5 years old)..



Categorization

Being able to organize objects into categories is a fundamental skill in science (and life).  The kids and I are constantly sorting various toys and household objects as well as things we find outside (living vs. nonliving, plant vs. animal, etc..).. 




Physical Science

I had so much fun doing Science Experiments to Demonstrate Gravity with the kids.

Pendulum

Spring Scale

Learning About the Properties of Air was equally fun (and all with thing we already had around the house):

Using hot air to blow up a balloon.

My kids couldn't get enough of this balloon-propelled rocket!

Any activities involving water are always a big hit at our house!  Science Experiments with Buoyancy was no exception...

Dancing Raisins Experiment

Trying to get an egg to float

Whenever I want to occupy the kids for a while, I let them Blow Bubbles in a Bowl.  It's not only fun, but also lets them make some good observations about the properties of bubbles..

Blowing Bubbles

What better use for all those dried-up markers lying around the house than a little exploration into Colors and Capillary Action?

Color Mixing

Color decomposition using capillary action

I'm hoping to do a longer unit on weather with the kids this year.  Our Rain Mini-Unit was rather successful considering it was all put together on-the-fly without any preparation.

Demonstrating condensation

Of course the preschool experience would not be complete without the traditional Baking Soda and Vinegar Experiment:


Plants and Animals

We learned about plants by putting some beans in damp paper towels and observing them as they grew.  Here's a link to our Learning About Plants unit.  We'll definitely be repeating this activity and adding more experiments with the plants.

 Parts of a plant

Measuring our bean plants

The girls have learned so much about animals from our little plastic animal figures (Toobs).  They enjoy Matching Animals to Cards and have become very good at observing the small differences between animals (cricket vs. grasshopper vs. praying mantis, for example).  We often discuss the characteristics of the animals, where they live, what they eat, etc..


We did a couple mini-units over the past year on specific animals.  It's a great way to not only learn about each animal but to integrate math, reading, creative movement, dramatic play and other skills into the mix.

We did a Mini-Unit on Frogs.  This year I want to raise our own real frogs from tadpoles.  Shhh... don't tell my husband!


Plastic frogs

Frog Life Cycle

The Mini-Unit on Whales was a lot of fun as well:

Identifying Whales

Demonstrating the size of a small Beluga Whale

My absolutely favorite way to teach my kids about science is to take Nature Walks.  It's so much fun watching them observe the world around them..

Backpack for a young naturalist

Observing the natural world!

I hope that this compilation of the science activities we've done over the past year has inspired you to try some new science activities with your kids.  I know that putting this together has definitely gotten me more excited about the science ideas that I have in store for this next year.

UPDATE: I was so inspired by how much my kids enjoyed early learning games that I created the La La Logic Critical Thinking Curriculum for 3-6 year olds, which includes online brain challenge games, printable worksheets, enrichment activities and more!


This post is part of my February 1st Blogoversary celebration. 

Please 'like' Learners in Bloom on Facebook for more fun!



6 comments:

  1. Wonderful summary of activities. Thanks!

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  2. Thanks for linking up to Creative Learning. In a couple of weeks we will study fish and will do your demonstration of the size of a small beluga whale. Maybe we will add a bit of Jonah in there. :)

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  3. Great activities!! I have pinned this and will be doing some of these with my daughter. Thanks for sharing. I found you through Link & Learn.

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  4. What a fantastic group of activities. I particularly love the parts of a plant model/diagram! Thank you for linking up this week to the Hearts for Home Blog Hop!

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  5. Wow! I have a 4 year-old daughter who really digs the experiments, and these are fantastic ideas! Even got me interested in science! Thank you!

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  6. lucky kids, some nice inquiry activities.

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