Activity time: 5 minutes
Materials for Activity
- For each station: Two clear bowls of warm water; a tray; cotton balls, several for each child; (optional) tongs
- Paper towels
- Optional: Blue food coloring
Preparation for Activity
- View pictures and description of this activity on the Teach Preschool blog.
- Set up the activity area with the supplies. If the group is large, make more than one station. At each station, fill one bowl with cotton balls and one with water, and place the bowls on a tray. Optional: Color the water with blue food coloring.
Description of Activity
In this water play activity, children experiment with rainy and cloudy weather.
Call the children to the activity area. Show them the bowls, and tell them that the cotton balls are clouds. Give each child a cotton ball to hold, and tell them to pretend that they are holding a cloud. Ask them how the cloud feels: heavy, light, soft, hard? Have the children dip the cotton balls in the water and then hold the wet cotton balls above the bowl. Say, in these words or your own:
How does the cloud feel now? What is happening with the water? The water is dripping from the cloud. The cloud can't hold all that water because it's too heavy.
Have them squeeze their cotton balls. It is raining!
Invite the children to experiment with how the clouds carry rain and how the rain falls from the clouds by dipping cotton balls in the water and squeezing out the rain. Optional: Have them try using tongs to squeeze out the water.
Invite the children to help clean up by wiping up any spilled water with paper towels.
Including All Participants
If any child is in a wheelchair, you can place the bowls, on a tray, on the arms of the wheelchair or in the child's lap. If a child cannot manipulate a cotton ball to squeeze it, have the children experiment in pairs.