Preschoolers are ACTIVE learners. Learning how to become great scientists can be exciting and FUN for our youngest explorers. Try some of the explorations below at home or in the classroom to PLAY with science for amazing discovery and learning.
Pretend play has a strong link to social and emotional intelligence, language, inquiry and problem solving skills, creative expression, sequential thought processes, and general nurturing skills in preschool. Through pretend play, preschoolers will begin to move beyond their natural egocentric views and toward the understanding of various roles that others have in our world. We hope your own kids will enjoy becoming SCIENTISTS as we pretend, learn, and, ultimately, apply new knowledge to our everyday world.
FALL SCIENCE EXPLORATIONS for PRESCHOOLERS!
- Why Do Fall Leaves Change Colors? Almost every teacher or parent of a preschool child is asked the question: “Why Do Fall Leaves Change Colors?” Often, parents (and even some teachers) do not quite remember WHY leaves change colors…they JUST DO! Experimenting with colors and exploring fall leaves with preschoolers is fun play as the vibrant colors of fall leaves appear!
- Bubbly Fires Science Experiment Who are the people in your neighborhood? Exploring the jobs that helpers have in the community is FUN learning for curious kids! Come learn and play with the #TeachECE Early Childhood Team this week as we explore all the various helpers in our own neighborhoods with a COMMUNITY HELPERS THEME. Our own “bubbly fires” science experiment will encourage kids to use critical thinking skills while playing to learn!
- Corn Life Cycle and Free Sequencing Activities for Kids The first corn farmers in the United States were the American Indians. Approximately 75% of the food we eat everyday contains corn in one form or another. Teaching young kids about the growing cycle of a corn stalk is not only interesting, but it will help “plant the seeds” (pun intended) for future studies on life cycles and how plants develop. Come create, sequence, and learn more about CORN!
- Pumpkin Life Cycle and Printable Sequencing Cards/Life Cycle BookletAs Fall approaches, the season offers great opportunities for playing and learning! Creating the Pumpkin Life Cycle crafts below are a wonderful way to incorporate science, literacy (Letter P and Sequencing), and fine motor skills into your fall lesson plans.
- Spider Life Cycle and Free Sequencing Cards for Kids All living things have a life cycle that repeats itself – the same pattern goes on and on. Spiders are not insects as they have eight legs and not six like insects do. Spiders are a member of the arachnid family and further distinguished from insects as arachnids have no antennae or wings. Come create, play, and learn about SPIDERS!
- Pumpkin Boats – Sink or Float? This fall science exploration is always a blast for preschoolers. Come see how to float a pumpkin boat.
- Nuts and Seeds Sensory Sound Explorations The Sense of Hearing is powerful learning for preschoolers! In order for the children to explore sounds, they must be able to locate the primary body parts that provide sensory sound information: the EARS!
- Fall and Thanksgiving Science for Kids Halloween and Thanksgiving Taste Testing Experiments are fun discovery whether at home or in the classroom. Free printable recording sheets for documenting learning.
- Fall and The 5 Senses: Explore sensory science with preschoolers and discover the best of fall.
Winter Science Activities for Preschoolers!
- Life Cycle of an Evergreen (Christmas Tree) – Free printable sequencing cards Whether you have an artificial or real Christmas tree at home or in the classroom, learning about evergreens is fun science for kids! The simple Christmas Tree Life Cycle craft will help preschoolers learn how conifers grow from a seed to an adult Christmas tree.
- Dissolving Teddy Bears Science Experiment Cute and cuddly bears provide wonderful inspiration for learning and explorations at home or in the classroom. Purchase a box of teddy bear cookies (or make your own at home) and come discover the wonders of simple preschool science with us!
- Blubber and Ice Animals that live in the Arctic region (Arctic Ocean, parts of Canada, Russia, Alaska, and some Nordic Countries) are known as Arctic animals. Arctic animals have special adaptations that allow them to survive on the frozen tundra in this unique region of the world. One of the special adaptations is BLUBBER. Blubber is a thick fatty tissue just under the skin of many arctic animals such as seals, whales, and polar bears. The fatty tissue not only keeps the animals warm in the extreme cold, but it serves as a fuel source when food is scarce. To help preschoolers visualize the insulating properties of blubber, try the following simple science experiment!
- Magnet Games and Discoveries in Preschool Come learn about magnets with suggestions for hands-on learning and discovery for preschoolers. It’s FUN play!
- Christmas and the 5 Senses: Explore smelly jars, sensory play, and MORE with the science of Christmas.
Spring Science Explorations for Preschoolers!
- Butterfly Life Cycle Kids love to explore life cycles. Try out a unique paper plate craft with a material all kids LOVE. Peeling and sticking provide great fine motor play for tiny fingers. Free butterfly life cycle cards to print.
- Valentine’s Day Dissolving Candy Experiment
- Layers of the Earth and Playdough Earth Day Explorations for Preschoolers Come learn about the Earth’s layers with tactile creation and play!
- Parts of a Flower FREE Playdough Creation Mat Come explore the parts of a flower with a free playdough mat for preschoolers.
- Explore the Sense of SOUND in Preschool! Teaching kids to LISTEN can be FUN with a little creativity. What sounds can YOUR kids hear?
- Preschoolers GONE BUGGY! Explore the parts of an insect with a free printable for hands-on creation. Buggy color matching printable and MORE for playful learning.
- St. Patrick’s Day Science – a tasty science discovery
- Exploring the Water Cycle in Preschool! Free Water Cycle Diagram and Activity Suggestions that will make learning FUN!
- Spring and The 5 Senses – explore the delights of spring with all 5 Senses.
Summer Science Explorations for Preschoolers!
- Sea Turtle Life Cycle and Sensory Bags for Playful Learning Exploring an ocean is exciting for preschool children! Ocean animals, shells, sand, and water are a wonder and bring out the natural curiosity that is at the heart of every young child. Whether your children have a chance to visit a real ocean or not, learning about the life cycle of a sea turtle is playful discovery for preschoolers!
- What’s Inside a Baseball? Hands-on Science and Discovery! If you live in the United States in the summer, there are few sports that can rival the excitement of baseball for kids! As we played at a local park last week, our kids found a baseball almost buried in the dirt. Some of the kids discussed if we should keep the ball or leave it. In the end, we chose to leave it in case another child should come back looking for it. On our walk back home, one of our kids asked: “Do you know what’s inside of a baseball?” We had to find out!
- The Wonder of the Solar System Come explore gravity, sorting, and creating with playful learning at its best! Ideas and suggestions for engaging young kids in the wonders of the solar system.
- Ice Cream Science Can your kids discover FLAVOR by TASTE alone? Tasty and FUN science with a free ice cream printable for your discoveries.
STEM and STEAM Education in Early Childhood!
STEM and STEAM Learning: Even preschoolers can begin explorations into critical thinking and problem solving. Try some of these simple STEM education activities to build important skills.
- STEM Flower Constructions – STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) activities compel preschoolers to use cross-disciplinary tools and critical thinking skills to solve a basic problem. By integrating STEM activities into normal daily routines, preschoolers can gain new knowledge that they can take with them beyond the classroom or home environment and apply to problems found in their everyday world. Come explore the FUN of spring STEM with a Flower Construction Challenge in Preschool!
- STEM: Evergreen Tree Building Challenge – STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) activities compel preschoolers to use cross-disciplinary tools and critical thinking skills to solve a basic problem. By integrating STEM activities into normal daily routines, preschoolers can gain new knowledge that they can take with them beyond the classroom or home environment and apply to problems found in their everyday world. Come explore the FUN of Winter STEM with an Evergreen Tree Building Challenge designed just for preschoolers!
- STEAM Learning: Tessellating Shapes in Early Childhood – STEAM activities engage skills from various educational disciplines (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Math) to invite young kids to discover new knowledge through inquiry and solution-based learning. By combining playful investigations in Early Childhood with a STEAM Education approach to learning, young kids are challenged to use cross-disciplinary and critical thinking skills to explore how ALL learning is connected to their everyday world! Come explore and PLAY as we add “the ARTS” to STEM for a STEAM approach to learning about tessellating shapes in Early Childhood.
- For MORE Ways to Play and Learn, The Preschool Toolbox has ready-made thematic units that each include an extensive active science learning category. Each theme has literacy, math, science, arts/crafts, songs/fingerplays/accompanying Power Points, food/food crafts, and gross motor/pretend play suggestions. Come play with us this year!