Many of us are still in the season of ‘ice and snow’.  Winter weather, snow and ice can bring lots of fun, discussion and science learning. Make the most of this season through some great activities.

Questions to Ask:

  • What do you think will happen?
  • Where does ice come from?
  • What happens when ice and snow melt?
  • How do you dress differently to play in the snow?

1. Winter Archeologist                                                                                                                                                                   For an ice study, take a large roasting pan and fill with water, glitter, marbles, plastic animals, sea shells, rocks etc. Freeze until the edges, bottom and top are really solid, but some water remains inside – it can be too hard to crack if frozen solid. Wear safety glasses and use a rubber mallet and dull chisel to dig the things out of the ice. This is an activity that requires a high level of supervision!

2.  Freeze a Bubble
Take bubbles outside on a day when the air temperature is below 32 degrees. Blow a bubble and catch it on the wand. Wait and watch as it freezes. It will turn into a crystal ball and shatter like glass. You can also do this with large wands, just dip the wand into the bubble mixture but instead of blowing it, let the crystals form across the mouth of the wand.

3. Banana Hammer
Freeze a banana in its peel
Use to pound a nail into wood!

4. Snow Melt
Bring a bucket of ‘clean’ snow inside. Place it in a clear container and let it melt. Check out how much ‘stuff’ was in the ‘clean’ snow.

5. Catch a Snowflake
On a day when there are lots of snowflakes falling, go outside with a black piece of construction paper that has been chilled in the freezer. Catch snowflakes on the paper and look at them through the magnifying glass.

6. Frozen Arrangement
Place a couple of silk flowers in a clean mild carton. Fill with water, making sure the water covers the tops of the flowers. Freeze overnight. Take out of the freezer and remove from milk carton. Place block of ice on large tray. Let children discover what happens when the ice melts!

7. Jack Frost
Rub a thick layer of petroleum jelly onto a clear glass plate or pie pan. Use your fingers to draw a shape or design in the petroleum jelly. Put in the freezer for at least 2 hours. When you take the plate out of the freezer, it should have frosty designs on it!

8. Ice Candy
Bring 2 cups of brown sugar, 3 Tablespoons butter, and 1/3 cup of water to a rolling boil. Boil for 10 minutes. Pour over shaved ice.