Preschool and kindergarten science activities about tracking animals

A little girl studying an animal track - a canine paw print - left in dirt.

© 2009 – 2021 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved These preschool and kindergarten science activities build on what most young children are already interested in — animals! And in addition to teaching lessons about biology, they also offer kids opportunities to practice analytical, spatial, and symbolic reasoning skills. Where to begin: Free exploration with … Continue reading

Preschool science experiment: Using ice to teach kids about scientific concepts (with crucial safety tips)

preschool boy carefully removing ice tray from freezer

© 2008 – 2021 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved A preschool science experiment is an opportunity to introduce children to the concepts of observation, prediction, and testing (Gelman and Brenneman 2004). Exciting? Yes. But it’s also tricky. On the one hand, research suggests that young children don’t think as creatively or as critically when … Continue reading

Preschool science activities: How to nurture your child’s interest in the natural world

© 2008 – 2012 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved Can we design better preschool science activities? Activities that stimulate curiosity, teach science concepts, and avoid overwhelming or boring children with lessons that are developmentally inappropriate? In the article below, I review the advice of educational and cognitive psychologists about preschool science education. But if … Continue reading

Preschool science experiment: Making mud bricks

This preschool science experiment is designed for kids who have already had experience playing with mud — both mixing mud and drying out mud. For best results, try this experiment after your child has explored the properties of dirt and mud. Materials Multiple dirt samples (sand, topsoil, dirt-and-gravel, etc.) Dried leaves or grass Sticks Buckets … Continue reading

Preschool science project: Floating and boating

© 2009 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved These activities allow kids to explore the concept of buoyancy. The first preschool project is that old standby — “floaters and sinkers.” The two that follow introduce children to the more complex activity of boat-building. To help kids develop a deeper understanding on the subject, tackle these activities in … Continue reading

Dirt Lab: Preschool science projects exploring soil and mud

© 2008 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved These preschool science projects permit kids to explore the properties of different kinds of dirt and mud. Kids will make observations using their senses and some science tools, like a magnifying glass and some tweezers. Kids will also explore the concept of change as they turn dirt … Continue reading

Science for kids: How to raise a science-minded child

Science for kids? Surely it begins at home. When kids grow up in science-friendly homes, they are encouraged to ask questions, think critically, experiment, explain their reasoning, read, write, create models, and watch science programs on TV. But what are the best activities and resources? And what about school? What do studies suggest about the … Continue reading