Scooping Snow

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Book: 

Weather Words and What They Mean by Gail Gibbons – Gail Gibbons writes many informative books on scientific topics and this is another great one!  R liked to point at different pictures and would say stuff to me in her baby talk.  I would name the object she was pointing at for her.

Activity:

1. A Cup of Rain

IMG_0193I used two simple ingredients to make the snow!  I used one box (4 lbs) of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda from my fridge and slowly added vegetable oil to it until the baking soda started holding form.  I then stored it in the fridge until R was ready to play with it.  I gave her an ice cream scoop and rubber spatula to explore with and promote motor skills.  She loved scooping the snow from one bowl to the other and squishing it between her fingers!  After the child is done playing, store the snow in a ziplock bag to use again and again!

Extension Activities:
a. Encourage Imaginative Play.  Set up an ice shop with the child.  Ask the child the following open-ended question: What do you need to start an ice cream shop?  Have him/her add appropriate items and then use the snow as a part of the ice cream store.
b. Develop Literacy and Numeracy Skills.  With the ice cream shop, encourage the child to label different flavours of ice cream with their names and add a price as well.  Continue reading

Raining Indoors

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Book: 

The Rain Came Down by David Shannon – The rain came down is a wonderfully illustrated story about the quarrels of a small community during a rainstorm and how they lend each other a hand once the sun comes out.

Activity:

1. A Cup of Rain

IMG_0209I topped a glass of water with shaving foam to represent clouds. R then dropped water, coloured with blue food colouring, into the glass to make it look like rain. She enjoyed adding water droplets and then swirling the mixture around using the dropper.

Extension Activities:
a.  Scientific Testing.  Set up four cups of water: two with hot water, two with cold.  To one cup of hot water and one cup of cold water, have the child drop in hot water coloured with blue food colouring.  To the other cup of hot water and the other cup of cold water, have the child drop in cold water coloured with food colouring.  Ask the child to observe and record the differences in how the different experiments behave.   With older children, have them come up with their own hypothesis to test. Continue reading

Discovering Wind

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Book: 

Weather! by Justin McCory Martin – R enjoyed listening to me read, “Weather!” It is a nonfiction book that includes information about all kinds of weather.

Activity:

1. Blowing Clouds

IMG_0163R worked on her coordination and lung strength as she attempted to blow cotton balls with and without a straw.  The way she curled her lips as she practiced blowing without a straw was just the cutest!!  It was a lot more difficult for her to blow with the straw since she had to aim the straw correctly.

Extension Activities:
a.  Have cloud blowing races with multiple kids.  If the kids are different ages, adapt the game for each one so that it is a fair race.  For example, the youngest child may blow without a straw, an older child with a straw and an even older child blind folded and no straw. Continue reading

Fading Sunshine

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Book: 

What Will the Weather Be Like Today? by Paul Rogers – What will the weather be like today? is an awesome book with just the right amount of writing on each page to keep R engaged and beautiful pictures to go along with the words. The book ends with a question to prompt weather exploration. Continue reading

Counting Clouds

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Book: 

The Cloud Book by Tommy de Paola – The cloud book has tons of great facts about clouds while still being engaging for younger children with its wonderful pictures!  R listened intently as I read through the pages.  At times, I didn’t get to read all the information on the page since R was ready to move onto the next page and would flip the page for me. Continue reading