Fun Fall Science Activities for Preschoolers
The fall season is a beautiful time to be outdoors with your kids and explore nature. With the pandemic largely affecting time spent outdoors, fall science activities are a great way to remind your kid about the wonders of nature and at the same time be indoors as much as possible. Encourage your kids to take on more hands-on learning with different fun fall science experiments and activities. Fall science activities are fun and easy to put together as during nature nature provides the perfect materials such as acorns, leaves, apples and more.
Here are 8 of our favorite fun fall science activities for preschoolers:
1. Apple Volcano: This chemistry science experiment will be a favorite amongst your kids! All you need for this fun fall science activity is some apples, baking soda, vinegar, a container and a knife (for the adults only). Place your apple on a dish and cut out a hole or vessel in the top of the apple about halfway down for your kids to continue with the experiment. Have your kids drop a couple spoons of baking soda into the hole of the apple and follow it up by pouring in some vinegar and voila, watch the chemistry magic unfold! This fun science experiment teaches kids about the reaction between baking soda and vinegar and how it releases a gas called carbon dioxide.
2. Exploring Acorns: Acorns are a fall favourite! This fall special is useful in ways that it can combine a little science, math, and fine motor work in one activity. Practice basic math games with your preschooler - play different math games with a bunch of acorns and brush up on your kid’s counting skills. Sink of float is a great sensory game for young kids. Let your kids add acorns to a bowl of water and guess if they sink or float.
3. Popcorn Cob: Corncobs are found in abundance during the fall. You can find them in any farmer’s market or any grocery store online. For this fun fall activity, you’ll need a corncob, some paperbags and a microwave. Put a corncob in a paperbag and throw it into a microwave and hear the popping magic unfold! The popcorn that comes off a fresh corncob is absolutely beautiful and unique. It also makes for a great movie snack that you can enjoy with your kids.
4. Tea Bag Ghosts: To prepare for this activity, grab a stack of tea bags, scissors, a non-flammable plate, a black marker, and a lighter. Ask your kid to take a tea bag and the scissors and cut the staple end off the top. After carefully dumping out the tea, draw a simple ghost face on the now cylindrical tea bag and balance it upright on the plate. Maintain some distance from the tea bag and then light the top of the ghost. The tea bag will burn down and the little ghost will simply vanish into a pile of ash on the plate. This is because air takes up space inside and outside the tea bag due to the heat. Sounds fun, doesn’t it?
5. Magic Pumpkin: This simple kids’ science experiment is a must-try this fall! Just grab a handful of Reese’s Pieces and a cup of hot water and you’re ready to make a jaw dropping magic pumpkin. Take a white plate and arrange your Reese’s Pieces in the shape of a pumpkin. Place the orange candies in a circle to form the sides and use four brown candies to make the stem at the top. Then slowly pour some hot water on the outside edge of the pumpkin. You need just enough to cover the bottom of the plate. And just sit back and watch the water work its magic. The shells of the Reese Pieces are made with food coloring and sugar. When the candies come in contact with the hot water, that sugar dissolves into the water and the colors spread across the plate, filling the pumpkin. This science activity is a simple way to introduce states of matter to kids.
6. How Do Leaves Breathe: All you need for this science experiment is a leaf and a bowl of water. Fill a bowl with some water and go out with your kid in the garden and pick off an active leaf from a plant or tree. Place that leaf into the bowl of water and leave the bowl in a sunny area. Give this a few hours and go back and check the bowl. You will notice a few bubbles rising around the leaf. Ask your kids what would happen if they held their breath, went underwater in the pool and then let their breath out - they would see bubbles coming up in the water. That is exactly what they are seeing here - the leaf is still using the sunlight as part of the photosynthesis process which allows us to see the oxygen the leaf is producing in the form of bubbles.
7. Leaf Sculptures: This STEM experiment will allow your kids to engage with nature, test their creativity and problem solving skills. In this activity, ask your kids to build a 6 inch sculpture with leaves, some Wikki Stix and a ruler. Brainstorm with your kids about how they will get their leaf sculpture to 6 inches. Let them use their creativity and problem solving skills to come up with a sculpture that will teach them about science and engineering.
8. Sorting Leaves and Seeds: Go for a walk with your kid and collect different kinds of leaves, seeds, stems, pinecones and so on. When you get back home, have a number of boxes of containers out for your kid to sort out whatever is collected. Ask them to start sorting and placing the items collected in different containers. The leaf goes in one container, the seeds go in another and so on. Once there are containers established for every item, ask your kid what goes where. Pick up a leaf from the collection and ask them where they should place it next. If your kid places it with the other leaves, they’ve understood sorting. Sorting is an important skill for both math and science. In science, we tend to use the word classify, but the concept is the same. Organizing things together into logical groupings is what sorting is all about.
Changing temperatures, colors, and changes in routines mean there are lots of opportunities to explore some new and exciting science experiments. Fall is an awesome time to do inexpensive, easy science experiments and activities with kids. Encourage hands-on learning with your kids which will give them a chance to be creative and engage in problem solving activities that will make them critical thinkers.