The winter season can be a hard time to navigate. Snows fill the streets, driveways become increasingly slippery, and movement outside is just generally deterred. However, STEM learning and education can turn things around for a family stumped by the chilling cold and icy environment outdoors.
Through STEM activities, a season of what would typically be used as a time for hibernation can be productive, fun, and educational. STEM activities, founded upon the virtues of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, can provide multitudes of entertainment during the dreary winter days.
From the viral frozen bubble that spread throughout the internet a few years ago to the hot but icy towers that make use of similar principles as the timeless baking soda volcano, there’s a lot of STEM learning to go around during the winter. These activities provide the two-pronged benefit of entertainment and education.
STEM learning has become increasingly essential as society progresses. This is evident in the case of the United States, as the country, regarded as the citadel of science and technology, has shown a decline in performance in the field; according to a study by the World Economic Forum. The report shows that the US ranked 44th in the world when it comes to mathematics and science instruction. The PISA Initiative also adds some perspective to this claim. Out of 71 countries that the PISA Initiative studied, the US was positioned to be 38th in Mathematics and 24th in the Sciences. The study was a rough gauge of knowledge and skills in the STEM-centric fields.
To improve such conditions and circumstances, people and the youth, not just in the US, are highly encouraged to pursue a STEM-based approach when it comes to developing the young minds of our future generations.
In aiding this campaign, here are over 50 activities that every family should try during the winter season. The coldest time of the year is the perfect time for facilitated and guided learning that delves deep into STEM concepts that will nourish children’s curiosities as parents and children are together more frequently and the winter chill can bring the family closer together.
Using a microscope, explore the science of snowflakes.
Did the snowflake have six sides? Did all the snowflakes have the same patterns? Did your children know that snowflakes are actually made from water vapor and not raindrops? There’s a lot of things to learn about snowflakes and these are just some of the guide questions that you can use to facilitate the learning experience.
Weighing and Comparing Snow
Bust out the toy scale and start comparing two separate cups of snow!
Suited for children at a younger age, this simple experiment can be an effective experience in getting young minds to critically think. After scooping up to cups of snow, proceed to observe its properties and measure its weight. Are they completely the same? When it melts, do they weigh the same? Does it have the same volume? This exercise can be a gateway into discovering the properties of matter and how temperature affects snow and other things.
Weather and Snow Textures
Through this activity, you and your kids, recommended for older students, can enjoy a winter science project together. Those who have experienced enough winters will surely notice and recognize that snow comes in many forms. Heavy and wet, dry and powdery, and many other textures and forms make up the snow all over the world. But what goes into its creation? Why are these expansive amounts of cold orbs the way they are? Through this winter science experiment, you will be looking into atmospheric conditions to uncover how weather affects the types of snows people experience throughout the coldest time of the year.
The Frozen Bubbles Experiment
This winter science activity broke the internet a few years ago and it has not stopped anyone from being mesmerized by its beauty. With a solution in one hand and bubble blower on the other, create as many icy orbs as you want and observe as they freeze and gradually transform from liquid to solid in a process of crystallization that has taken millions of breaths away.
This bubble experiment has gained renown for being fun and aesthetically intriguing. Take the family outside for some bubble-blowing revelries and observe as the magic of frozen bubbles unravel in front of you.
How Do Penguins Stay Dry?
An activity that involves these popular flightless birds is always fun. Penguins have gained the adoration of the world, but there’s a lot of science in the lives of these magnificent creatures. For one, the world remains in awe of their mysterious ability to stay dry despite spending so much time underwater. Shouldn’t they freeze quickly after getting out of the water? What keeps their feathers protected from the harsh climates that they live in.
This experiment will be involving wax crayons and penguin drawings that show how the birds stay safe in the brazenly cold weather they’re accustomed to.
Condensation and Frost
Learn about the scientific principle of condensation and how it influences the formation of frost, This entertaining winter science exercise can be administered with just two metal cans and some salt.
You can get the experiment started by placing ice cubes – or if you’re doing this during the winter, snow – inside the cans. With the use of salt, you and your kids can learn about condensation and how the properties of the materials affect the exercise.
Crush a Can Using Air
How cool is crushing some cans using air pressure? This experiment is a fascinating activity that will involve snow and some cans to smash. Adult supervision is still recommended, though, as this activity will be making use of boiling water and it will be important to prioritize safety.
Gather some good old snow as it will be important for this experiment. This activity revolves around changes in air pressure. You will be applying how water on the snow-filled cans, and watch what happens!
Simulate the Eruption of a Snow Volcano
The timeless experiment known as the baking soda volcano has been a hit for decades for its entertaining aesthetic and bewitching science.
This experiment puts a novel twist on the classic baking soda volcano as it simulates the eruption using a pile of snow instead. It goes the same way, make a mixture out of vinegar and baking soda and pour it into a pile of snow outside to see the magic happen. This would make for an awesome winter science project for young minds of all ages. It would also be a great entryway into learning about bases and acids.
Explore the Science Behind Mittens with Kids
This experiment is best suited for younger children. You can start the experiment by asking your children whether or not mittens are warm. The answer is likely to be yes. When they do, work with them to check on the temperature of the actual mitten. Record the results and explain the science to them. This is a good topic on body heat and insulation through a quick and easy experiment.
Stop Ice From Melting
Many people spend their time trying to get rid of ice and snow. For this experiment, you’ll be doing the exact opposite. Through insulating properties of different kinds of materials, you will be doing your best to keep ice from melting. You will be working through different forms of insulation to observe and discover which one keeps ice frozen.
Tying Ice Cubes Together
Simple and fun, this activity doubles as an experiment for both science and arts – with a touch and engineering. The goal is to use a string to link together ice cubes. Primarily, the experiment starts with the test of lifting ice cubes with just a piece of string. It may sound simple, but there’s some science to this activity. With a pinch of salt, the experiment will educate your child on how matter moves through different phases. This activity will involve some melting and re-freezing.
Once you and your kids figure it out and get the ropes on the experiment, a bonus activity can be making garlands of colored ice stars that you can hang outside during the winter season. An ornament that exhibits science and some creativity!
Discovering the Best Way to Melt Ice
Salt has been the usual go-to material when it comes to melting ice. It’s time to ask the most important question: why? This experiment will involve multiple containers of ice and equally many other melting agents to see if there are other materials out there that work better than good old salt.
The Igloo Construction Activity
The best STEM activities are those that practice all the core aspects – science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. This activity, while a bit more advanced than many of the others listed here, is just that.
Fun for people of all ages, this project will be a good activity for groups consisting of kids and adults. With the use of boxes and milk cartons, make blocks of ice and snow by freezing them in the cold. Depending on how many materials and the number of people in groups you have, build a realistically sized igloo that can be decorated.
If you don’t have enough hands or people, the group can settle for a smaller-sized structure or even a small-scale version using ice cubes instead. The point of the activity is to learn, build, and have fun doing so.
Measuring the Water Content in Snow
Suited for the younger kids, this experiment will be involving measurement and how phases of matter affect its properties. Prepare jars of snow and measure the volume for each container. Record your findings and compare them with when the snow melts. Compare the data and form a hypothesis with your kids.
Through this experiment, you can discuss water content, the phases of matter and how it affects the world, and volume.
The Mini Hockey Experience
Hockey is a sport loved all over the world. Explore how the ice arenas work by making a miniature version of the stadiums using a pan and a frozen surface.
Simulate how hockey pucks glide through arenas the way they do in hockey games by using bottle caps on the surface of the newly engineered pan arena. You can also consider taking your kids outside to look for bigger puddles and use the bottle caps to see how it slides on the different surfaces.
Freeze an Oobleck
Oobleck – children’s favorite material to make a mess out of. For those unaware of what an Oobleck is: it’s a simple mixture of cornstarch and water. Simple, isn’t it? Not quite. This mixture is called a non-Newtonian liquid. This fancy name pertains to a material that has liquid and solid properties. For the most part, while untouched, oobleck is a thick liquid. Upon human touch, it turns into a sandy and sticky solid state.
But what happens if you freeze oobleck during the winter season? That’s what you’re about to discover through this experiment. The mysterious material can be frozen – which you can have fun observing as it transitions from one form of matter to the next.
Birdwatching in a Winter Wonderland
Many species of birds are accustomed to various types of climates. This is the reason why birds move back and forth between locations as seasons change. During wintertime, many species of birds move to and from a location – which makes an opportune time to observe what kinds of birds relocate to your area.
Winter would be an ideal time to mount a bird feeder onto an observable location to watch the birds in their natural state. With your kids, you can identify which of the feathered friends are visitors and which are common backyard birds. You can also use the opportunity to see what kind of food they prefer.
Experimenting with Pine Cones
This could very well be an outdoor adventure for you and the young Einsteins! Take a quick trek outside and pick some pinecones; just enough to conduct a quick experiment.
Afterward, place a couple in separate containers. Use different materials on the pine cones in an attempt to crack them open. Label each of the containers with whatever method you used on them and record the results. The experiment can use cold water, how water, and other materials that will allow you to open them and release their seeds.
Track Nature’s Changes Through a Winter Study
An exciting way to learn more and teach your kids about the world is by educating them about the world’s season. Come winter, you can join your kids as they keep track of the many changes that the temperatures bring. Mark the calendars that span the duration of the year’s coldest season and record daily observations on the things that change every week.
You can take note of diminishing temperatures, track the volume of the snowfall, check animal prints, and many other things that come with the changing season.
Arctic Animals: How Do They Stay Warm?
Animals are mysterious beings to children and are often the subject of their curiosities. Nurture this excitement by telling them about arctic animals who can stay warm despite the extreme cold.
Discuss the lives of Polar Bears, Emperor Penguins, Walruses, Sea Lions, and many other arctic beings to give them an idea about what an arctic habitat looks like. Then simulate these animals’ warming capabilities by giving them a quick experiment using rubber gloves, zipper bags, and a can to let them know about the layers of fat that keep many animals comfortable during chilling seasons.
This is an experiment that you can do both indoors and outdoors. Make sure to stay safe and warm outside. If done indoors, you may use a bowl of cold water and ice cubes.
Ice Coloring and Melting Activity
In this creative science experiment, you and your kids will be working with watercolor and salt. This activity will have you melt some ice and drop colors on them to see the ravines and crevices form as they melt.
This activity can be used as a gateway in explaining the principle of freezing temperature depression – the process behind making salt a catalyst for melting processes – colorfully and charmingly.
Pressure + Ice = Melting
Throughout this list, salt has often been used to help melt ice. In this experiment, you’ll be switching to pressure as the medium that’ll be used as the melting agent. By laying a piece of wire over an ice cube, weighed down by a couple of bottles varying in weight, observe how fast the wire melt through concerning the mass of the bottles.
Do the heavier bottles melt ice faster? Do the lighter ones do the job quicker? Create a hypothesis and discuss the finding with your children. The heat that the weights produce through the pressure it applies on the ice cubes is the difference-maker, making for an exciting experiment for the winter season.
Generating Instant Ice
A video has been circulating on social media platforms all over the web. A man holds a bottle of water; he slams it onto a table and the water inside can be seen instantaneously transforming into ice. How does this happen?
This icy experiment, while seeming mystic, is more science than magic. The same results can be produced with the use of water, a bowl of ice, and some rock salt. The trick to this magical science experiment is placing the bottle of water into a container (or bowl) with ice and rock salt. Upon lifting the bottle, you will find that the water inside it is still liquid; slam it against the counter and you’ll be surprised to see that the water freezes instantly.
Icy Towers of Rainbow Hues
This is one of the most aesthetically pleasing experiments on this list. By using ordinary bottles of water, some food coloring, ice, and a big container, you and your kids can make rainbow-colored pillars of ice. This activity is amazingly entertaining as it is equally beautiful and fascinating.
After a quick trip to the grocery store to pick up bottles of water (consider buying several bottles because it may take some trial and error), add food coloring into the water; one color of the rainbow for each bottle for best results, and store them in the freezer from 90 minutes to up to 5 hours, depending on the power of your refrigerators. The main goal is to reach temperatures below the freezing point without actually turning the water inside the bottles into solid ice.
Once you get the timing accurately, slowly remove the bottles from the freezer and very carefully take the caps off to avoid immediate freezing. Prepare the container by putting ice in them. Pour all of the colored water into the container at the same time and watch it instantaneously freeze and form rainbow-colored pillars of ice. With some dexterity and some care in administering the experiment, this activity can be one of the best projects to do with the family during the cold winter season.
Painting Salt Snowflakes
The main lesson to be learned in this experiment is about the scientific process called absorption. This activity will also be dealing with artful information on color mixing as it makes use of salt painting activities to educate both administrators and observers.
Form snowflake-shaped mounds of salt and glue. Make sure to be as artistic as possible as you administer the exercise with your kids to make full use of their creative imagination. Build as many salt snowflakes as you can, as long as you have enough coloring materials to use for every single one.
After building the salt mounds, apply food coloring to the snowflakes and watch the color spread through absorption. To make for a more creative experience, mix and match colors to discover how the hues interact with each other. An entertaining and amazing way to learn about science processes through creative means.
This activity is as wintery as it gets. The basic construction of snowmen is one of the most popular yet most basic exhibitions of STEM learning. Through this activity, students learn about the fundamentals of spatial recognition amusingly and creatively. All you need is a snowy outdoor environment, some sticks, and some basic accessories for the snowman; maybe a hat or a scarf. To ensure that safety comes first, this activity must be facilitated with adult supervision.
Building a Pillar of Hot Ice
The existing juxtaposition in the name of the experiment “hot ice” is intriguing all in itself. But the instantaneous formation of a crystal pillar as it’s poured into a container is even more cryptic and enchanting than the concept itself.
Using a similar mixture that fuels the ever-bewitching baking soda volcano experiment, this experiment utilizes vinegar and baking soda to spontaneously create captivating towers of ice that exudes heat from the chemical reaction that forms it.
The Sweet Science Behind Hot Cocoa
Many kids have a liking for all things sweet. A child’s sweet tooth is often most prominent at younger ages so this experiment is likely to turn some heads when you and other parents bring it up. Before you start, let the children predict where cocoa powder and marshmallows dissolve or melt faster.
To prepare the experiment, prepare multiple cups of cocoa with varying temperatures of water. Once you put the cocoa powder into the mix, time how long it takes each mug or cup of water to dissolve the powder and melt the marshmallow. After the experiment, compare the results. After a quick discussion with the kids on temperature and how it influences the melting and dissolving time of different things, proceed to enjoy the cup of cocoa!
Water Content: Snow vs Ice vs Water
In a similar experiment in this list, you measure the amount of snow and compare its form to the water left in the jar when it melts. This will show you and your kids the amount of water content and its relation to the amount of snow.
In this experiment, using similar methods, you prepare three different jars: one with just water, one with ice, and one with snow. All should be at least four inches deep. After leaving it out to melt, measure how much water is left in two of the jars (the one with snow and the one with ice).
Does it retain the standard four-inch depth that is started with? What changed? Why did such changes happen? These are the guide questions to answer when you discuss with your children.
Create Your Snow
In many places in the world, wintertime doesn’t necessarily mean snow. Due to geographical factors and elements, many places in the world don’t get to have snow. If you can’t get it to snow, sometimes, you gotta make your winter wonderland. This is a recipe that is perfect for DIY snow.
This recipe goes as far as back as 2014 when a site called AMotherThing.com published the formula for homemade snow. Using the magical chemical, baking soda, and highly affordable coconut hair conditioner, you can take a snow adventure right inside your home.
The Ice Fishing Activity
Ready the hooks and freeze some ice cubes because you and your kids are about to go fishing. Use a basin or a big bowl of water (fill it up until it’s 3/4 full), multi-colored ice cubes, a string, and some table salt.
Start by putting the colored ice cubes into the basin or bowl of water and waiting for it to float. To fish out the ice, make contact with the ice using the end of the string. Once you locate where the string and the ice meet, sprinkle some table salt on that location where the string and ice touch. Lift the string carefully and you and your kids will be amazed to see that the cube has stuck.
Make it a magical and creative experience by using different colors and shapes on the ice cubes.
Making Holiday Goop
Sometimes, science is a beautiful mess. That’s the case for this experiment – making, molding, and playing with holiday goop (and making a mess out of it too). Using some water, some cornstarch, glitter, and food coloring, science and slime are about to get a holiday makeover.
The goop mixture is simple: combine cornstarch and water then decorate with some color and some glitter. Make sure you don’t make just one color. Also, consider mixing and combining the colors to see what hues come out of certain combinations.
DIY Crystal Ornaments
This experiment explores art and creativity through astonishing science that produces concrete and beautiful results. Grow your crystal ornaments with your kids just by using pipe cleaners, string, scissors, a wide-mouth jar, water, and borax.
From the get-go, the children can showcase their imagination, as the first step is to craft the shape of the ornament with the use of pipe cleaners. One recommended shape to go with is the snowflake – representative of both the holidays and the winter seasons. It takes some dexterity, still, because you have to make sure it’s minute enough to be suspended in the jat while avoiding touching the sides.
Boil some water. Remember to prioritize safety, so administer this experiment with adult supervision. Once removed from heat, proceed to stir three tablespoons of borax for every cup of hot water until it dissolves.
Pour this mixture into the jar and tie a string to the ornament you and your kids made so it can be hung from another pipe cleaner or pencil. This way, it can remain suspended within the jar. After six or more hours, the ornament will be complete and you will be left with an ornament as beautiful as any – a product of your and your children’s imaginations.
This experiment may take a bit of work but once you get the hang of it, it’s an activity that is captivating as it is scientifically and creatively intriguing.
The Science Behind Maple Snow Candy
Get a treat out of this sweet experiment as you and your kids uncover the science at work behind maple snow candy. Here are some of the stuff you need for this sugary activity:
• 8.5oz Grade A Pure Maple Syrup (make sure its pure or the experiment will run into problems).
• A Wide Pan.
• Fresh and Clean Snow.
• A Candy Thermometer.
• A Pot.
First things first: catch some fresh and clean snow outside using the pan you have ready. After gathering a good amount of snow, pack them tightly and carve patterns to make fun shapes to pour the syrup into and move it over to the freezer. While the snow chills, get a fire going and boil some pure maple syrup over medium-high heat while you stir the whole time. Once the candy thermometer tells you you’ve reached about 220 to 230 degrees, set the syrup on a hot pad. Remember that the pot will be very hot so adult supervision is strongly advised.
Take the snow out of the freezer, and using a spoon, move the syrup into the shapes you’ve made to craft a stylish maple snow candy that’s not only sweet but aesthetically pleasing as well.
Mini Sleds and Newton’s Laws of Motion
Using household materials and the winter wonderland just outside your home, set up a competition on who can engineer the best mini sled in the family. It can just be a sled made out of boxes and tape weighed down by heavy materials.
By using the snow that’s gathered outdoors, fashion a good mound that can be the course you can use for the mini sled race. Through this activity, you and your children can apply and discuss Sir Isaac Newton’s Laws of Motion in an entertaining way that makes use of STEM concepts effectively.
A Winter Lesson on Friction
Explore how different materials interact with ice on a lesson on friction. Prepare a variety of materials that can be used to test friction on ice like bottle caps, papers, and other unique surfaces and compare the results.
Using a wide container that can hold a decent amount of water, craft a mini ice rink to use as the surface for the test. With your kids, predict how each of the materials will move on the icy surface and discuss why certain textures interact and move better on ice than others.
Shaping Sweet Treats: Molding Candy Canes
Customizing what your candy looks like is probably every kid’s dream. In this holiday-themed experiment, you can use leftover candy cane from the holidays to craft customized and personalized treats for the kids to learn from and enjoy.
To get this edible artwork started, gather the leftover candy canes and ready your sweet tooth. Place them on parchment paper or a cookie sheet and place them in the oven set to 250 degrees. After 10 minutes, you can take them out of the oven and quickly craft them into all sorts of shapes and sizes with your children! You have to do it with haste because they’re only malleable for a certain amount of time. Once they cool down and harden again, you can enjoy the new and improved candy cane with your kids while you discuss the sweet science of molding candy canes.
Pendulum Painting in the Snow
Pendulum Painting is a mesmerizing activity that you can do outside in the snow. This activity would be an ideal experiment for teaching children about the earth’s rotation, gravity, and the laws of motion through inventive and artful means.
By attaching a gradually dripping bucket of paint to a string and using it as a pendulum over a canvas, you and your children can create a work of art through the forces that act on the Earth to create movement. By adding some food coloring to saltwater, you can use the snow outside as the canvas.
Make a Snowstorm Indoors
There are times when it’s too cold outside. Instead of playing with snow, you can create your very own snowstorm in a jar instead. Using ordinary household materials and supplies, you and your children can administer the science experiment of creating your snowstorms.
Here are the materials you need for the experiment:
• Oil (cooking oil or baby oil).
• White Washable School Paint.
• Alka Seltzer Tablets.
• Cup, Jar, or Bottle.
The experiment will make use of oils. Which oil to use will depend on you. Primarily, there are two options: cooking oil, the more affordable choice; and baby oil, the material that offers better results. Baby oil, however, is more expensive compared to cooking oil. Cooking oil, on the other hand, has a yellowish color that doesn’t necessarily agree with the winter theme of the experiment. Anyway, whichever material you choose, both will serve the experiment well.
To get started on creating a blizzard in a jar, add a cup of water into the container of your choice. Make sure you use a transparent container so you can serve the chemical reactions that make up the experimental snowstorm. Next, mix a teaspoon of paint. Acrylic works well and glitter adds a bit more magic into the activity too.
After, you can now pour the oil in. Start breaking the Alka seltzer tablets into pieces and put them in one at a time. To give the experiment a snowier vibe, you may add more pieces of broken-down Alka seltzer to make it more like a blizzard.
No snow outside but the kids still want to have that wintery experience? Create your snowballs through this DIY experiment. It’s just as pretty as it is simple.
All you need is four cups of frozen baking soda, one to two cups of cold water, and a large bowl or container. Other optional ingredients can be glitter, to make the snowballs look delightful, peppermint extract, for a wintery scent, and snowman accessories, just in case you and kids feel like making a snowman.
Pour the frozen baking soda into a container then gradually add water into the mixture until you hit the consistency you desire. The frozen baking soda is sure to make your DIY snowball icier and cold.
With a little chemistry, a winter-themed peppermint-scented slime is craftable using very standard materials. Bearing a scent reminiscent of the holiday spirit, this experiment is a fun activity for the winter season.
Here are the materials that you need to make peppermint-scented slime:
• Half a teaspoon to one teaspoon Borax Laundry Booster.
• Four to five ounces of Elmer’s Clear Glue or one bottle (Using Elmer’s glue is important because.
• It plays a huge part in making the slime texture neat and high quality).
• A cup and a half of water (separate cups of one cup warm water (8oz.) and half a cup of water at room temperature (4 oz.).
• Two bowls.
• Washable red liquid watercolor.
• 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon of peppermint extract or a few drops of peppermint essential oils.
• Glitter to please (optional).
The experiment may not be the most cost-efficient activity out there but the quality of the finished product is top-notch. The scent makes for a magical playtime when combined with slime quality that doesn’t leave hands goopy and messy.
Prepare separate bowls with one cup of water for one and just half for the other. Add borax to the one with a single cup of water and stir until it dissolves. On the bowl with just half a cup of water, add a bottle of Elmer’s clear glue and stir. This is where you add the red watercolor and peppermint extract as well. Once thoroughly mixed, combine the two bowls and mix to fully integrate the ingredients. There will be excess water and some stickiness at first, but when it sets (this is when you add the glitters), the slime will have a familiar fragrance and smooth texture that children will have fun playing with.
The Exploding Snowman
One of the most hilarious experiments that you can do for the winter season is the exploding snowman. All you need is a couple of materials that can be found in a household setting. Prepare a sandwich bag and put decorate it with a snowman’s face. Gather three teaspoons of baking soda and wrap them up in a sheet of paper towel or tissue. Put the packet of baking soda into the sandwich bag and add a few dashes of vinegar into the mix.
Be sure to seal the sandwich bag as fast as you can because the mixture will swell quickly that may cause the ingredients to spill out. Once you seal the sandwich bag, let go and watch it swell uncontrollably until it explodes.
A Frozen Castle: Building an Ice Structure
This experiment puts a cold and wintery twist to the common beach activity of building sandcastles. Using containers of varying sizes, freeze some water to produce blocks of ice for your castle. You and the kids can use plastic containers, silicone muffin cups, buckets, or even pitchers to build the foundations of your ice castle.
With a bit of ice, melt and instantly refreeze parts of the blocks so it sticks with the other materials you made for construction. This experiment is a great engineering activity that empowers STEM-based education through innovative and exciting ways.
Learn about engineering, physics, and design through an activity that will surely get the kids excited. In this DIY experiment of crafting and designing snowball launchers, families will get to enjoy a fun activity outdoors as they hurl icy ammunition at each other through mechanisms they design themselves.
By using balloons, a glue gun and its and sticks, tape, small plastic cups, and a variety of snowball-looking ammunition such as styrofoam balls, cotton balls, pompoms, and even balled up paper, the DIY snowball launcher is just minutes of DIY crafting away.
Get started by cutting the bottom out of the plastic cup. This will leave the rim – but be sure it’s strong enough to hold a stretched balloon or else the cup will crumple. Trim off the edges to get rid of jagged impediments as well. Next, tie a knot at the neck of a balloon then cut the opposite end off the balloon adjacent to the knotted area. Finally, tape or glue the balloon to the bottom of the cup (the area where you cut the hole.
Ice Lanterns for the Winter
Ice lanterns are one of the things that you can create to make your winter wonderland look even more enchanting. You and your kids can work together on creating a magical-looking lantern that you can use to decorate your house for winter and during the holidays.
In the spirit of safety, you can use a battery-operated candle for this experiment. Decide on what ornaments you want on your lantern and decorate a large cup for the activity. After decorating your large cup, place the battery-powered candle into it and power it up.
This experiment will be working on not only the STEM learning of your kids but also their fine motor and spatial recognition skills. Prepare several cups of cocoa and use them as targets for your marshmallow catapult.
Using some popsicle sticks, a disposable spoon, and some rubber bands, have your children design their catapults and take aim for the cocoa targets!
In many cases, people don’t have the snow for igloo-making due to geographical circumstances. There are also times when the outdoors become too cold and hazardous to play outside. Such circumstances present the perfect opportunity to work on the experiment called sweet igloos. Using blocks of sugar and marshmallow, enjoy a creative activity with your children on constructing and building their unique designs of igloos made out of sweets.
Building Santa’s Sleigh
Santa needs your help! Santa’s sleigh broke down and he needs a new one. With your children, use household materials to design mini sleighs and test them out on different terrains. Test them out in the snow, indoors, on icy slopes, and in many other areas to see where each design performs best.
This experiment can teach you and your kids a thing or two about friction and physics through engineering and inventive playtimes.
Lego Ice Excavation
Freeze lego men inside blocks of ice. Utilizing different materials like salt, toothpicks, and water, conduct a race between members of the family on who gets to free their lego men first. This activity will stimulate critical thinking and practical problem-solving skills that are paramount to the virtues of STEM learning.
Liquid Freezing Time
Does water freeze at the same rate vinegar does? Does saltwater freeze faster than saltwater? Gather different liquids so you and the young minds of the family can find out! Put a variety of liquids in different jars. Put them in the freezer and leave them outside and see which liquids freeze the fastest by monitoring them by the minute, or by the hour. This experiment explores the differences between liquids and how they react to their environment.
Winter comes every year but people only get a few years to spend quality time with their kids. Make the most out of it by adding an educational element to family time and having fun together as they learn.