You don’t need to go to a science center to teach your toddler science and nature. You can do it at home, through games and activities, with everyday items.
Why games? Because you can help your toddler to turn an otherwise boring subject into something to look forward to.
What can I say; you and your toddler can learn, bond, play, and have fun at the same time. To top it up, these games are free as you only make use of what you already have at home.
Activities and games listed below are best for children between 2-5 years old. Let’s get started.
Fill a large drinking glass with water. Place a small mirror in the glass. Tilt the mirror slightly. Go to a dark room with white walls. Shine the flashlight onto the mirror. A rainbow appears on the wall. You may need to adjust the angle of the mirror if you can’t get the rainbow. Explain to your toddler what happens and name the colors in the rainbow.
Some parents stop their kids from going into the kitchen. Please don’t because kids can learn scientific concepts from cooking. You can always try out recipes specially created for children. Give your child simple tasks like washing up vegetables and fruits, mixing flour and water. Show them how things change colors with heat or cold. Teach them how bread is made. Show them the proper ways of handling and preparing food. Remember to show things slowly and you might need to repeat until he gets it.
One of the best ways to expose your toddler to nature is hiking. Explain to them what they see in the woods, streams, and waterfalls: Trees, leaves, insects, animals, birds, and plants.
Ice Cube Fun
Show your toddler how to make ice cubes. He’ll learn how water becomes ice (solid) and vice versa. From filling up the ice cube tray with water to placing it in the freezer. Once the cubes are frozen, let the child touch and feel them. Show your toddler how ice cubes turn back into water again.
Growing a Plant
This takes some time but kids love it. Put wet cotton in an egg tray. Sprinkle some red/green beans on the cotton. Water the beans daily until you see the sprouts. The whole process teaches your child about the growth of a plant. If you wish, you can move the plants to a bigger pot to let them grow further.
Take a magnet and let your child try it on different objects (such as paper, pencil, paper clip, plastic toy, drinking glass, spoon, plate, ruler, coins, etc.) to see which materials will be attracted to magnet.
Want more? Here is a list of 70 toddler games and activities you can do with your child.