22 January . 2021
5 Fun Things To Do On A Snow Day (That Are Also Educational)
Snow days this year are going to be a little bit different. They won’t be free-for-all days of whatever. This year, they will need to have more education built in. But, don’t worry: just because something is educational doesn’t mean it can’t be fun!
Here are five ideas of fun things to do on snow days that are also educational.
- Nature Scavenger Hunt
Winter is a time when a lot of nature seems to go to sleep, only to wake up again in the spring. But that’s not always the case. There is so much still growing and thriving in the cold—it just takes an observant eye to see it. Build a list or grid (using pictures for younger kids) of things to find outside. Then laminate the list (or cover tightly in cling wrap) to keep it waterproof. Send out your nature explores with the list and a crayon to mark off all the things they find. Afterwards, when they are back inside and warm, you can have an “expedition debriefing” and discuss what they found.
- Kitchen Science Experiments
We’ve covered a few really neat science experiments in one of our previous blog posts. In that post, your kids can learn: how to make a heatless lava lamp by learning about density; seemingly defy gravity with slime and how it works; and “explode” milky fireworks while learning about the different properties of molecules and how they interact with each other.
And no, we don’t mean putting make up on rabbits or anything like that. We mean things like testing which winter animals like which foods or which can learn to open a box to get a treat. Use this as a great way to explore the scientific method with your kids, including helping them create a hypothesis, devise a precise experiment, and collect and analyze the data. Bonus: here’s a fun way to make a bird feeder using gelatin, bird seed, and cookie cutters.
- DIY Rock Candy
Ever the old standard, making rock candy at home is a science experiment where your kids get to eat the results. All science is best when you can eat the results. Rock candy takes about a week to fully form (and requires some adult supervision when heating and pouring the sugar mixture), but during that time your kids can watch the candy crystals grow. They can also learn about the science behind it: supersaturated solutions and crystal nucleation! Popular Science has a great page with simple instructions and a lot of science.
- Make A Cloud
There are two ways to do this: one outside and one inside. They both are experiments in condensation, but the outside method can only be done by tossing boiling water into the air in extreme cold. Poof, instant cloud. For all other times, you can make a cloud using boiling water, a jar, an extinguished match (or puff of hairspray), and a bowl of ice. Learn how to conduct the inside cloud experiment, and the science behind it, from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Of course, there are many great things to do on a snow day. We hope this list inspires you to find even more activities that promote education, while being super fun.
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