Ice Is Nice--Improve observation and questioning skills by freezing and melting ice. Add water to an ice cube tray and set it in the freezer. Ask your child how long it will take to freeze. For variety, use different levels of watering different sections of the tray. Set ice cubes on a table. Ask your child how long they will take to melt. Why do they melt? Place the ice cubes in different areas of the room. Do they melt faster in some places than in others? Why?
Float and Sink--Encourage hypothesizing (guessing). Use several objects--soap, a dry sock, a bottle of shampoo, a wet sponge, an empty bottle. Ask your child which objects will float when dropped into water in a sink or bathtub. Then drop in the water, one by one, to see what happens.
What Does It Take to Grow?--Teach cause and effect relationships. Use two similar, healthy plants. Ask your child to water one plant and ignore the other for a week or two, keeping both plants in the same place.
At the end of that time, ask your child to water the drooping plant. Then talk abut what happened and why. Plants usually perk up with water just as children perk up with good words and smiles from parents.
Children are eager learners: They are interested in everything around them. These easy-to-do activities encourage children's active learning and those wonderful words of growing confidence, "I can do it."
Think of these as starter activities to get your ideas going. There are opportunities everywhere for teaching and learning.
Take a little time to do a lot of good!
For more information on other publications to help your children learn call:
U.S. Department of Education
These home learning "recipes" have been tested and developed by Dr. Dorothy Rich, author of MegaSkills, for the National Education Association and The Home and School Institute, 1994.
Reproduction of this brochure is permitted.
Source: U.S. Department of Education