Thursday, July 26, 2012

Sink or Float: Exploring with Toys

Anything that involves water is sure to capture your child's attention, so why not use it to explore some science concepts. Today, we pulled out a bunch of our favorite toys and had fun experimenting with mass and density.  These can be hard concepts for young children, so mostly we focused on identifying which types of materials were likely to float and that some heavy things are able to float (like boats).

For this activity, you'll need:
A clear container filled halfway with water
Various toys and objects 
(cars, blocks, plastic tools, play vs. real coins, etc.)
Chart paper
Construction Paper

1.  First, I let the kids pick toys that they wanted to experiment with.

2.  Then, we talked about predictions and I had the kids draw their toys in a bowl of water to show whether they thought each one would sink or float.

3.  Next, we  tested each toy and recorded our findings on the large chart paper.  This was also a great opportunity to work on  our letters and sounding out words.  Older children could write on the chart themselves or keep their own charts.

 4.  After we tested our toys, I let the kids explore and they came up with some interesting findings.
  • They made a boat with the frisbee and were able to float things that had previously sunk.
  • Cloth starts out floating, but starts to sink when it gets wet.
  • It is fun to blow floating objects across the container!

 For more sink and float activities, and a fun video, click here.

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Happy Exploring!

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1 comment:

  1. Floating bath toys can be a way to increase a number of skills for your baby, starting as soon as he or she is able to sit up on their own.