5 Great Science Projects for Kids

It’s so easy to make science the favorite subject of young kids because there are so many high-interest topics to cover with them. Following are some of our favorite projects and some resources to go along with them:

1. Rock Candy. Even my somewhat cynical almost-twelve-year-old is excited about making rock candy. This is a great project for studying rocks and minerals because it allows kids to see how minerals grow in crystals. It has the added benefit of requiring no storage after you’re finished with the project since the kids will gobble it up!

The Magic School Bus: Inside the Earth is a great resource for studying geology.

photo by stevendepolo

 

2. Exploding Volcanoes. It is so much fun to make a volcano that erupts and it can be as simple or as complex as you like. We usually make our volcanoes out of salt dough, using a kids’ medicine cup to create the opening, but you can make them out of paper mache, clay, or even just Play-doh.

To create the eruption, you just mix baking soda and vinegar (and red food coloring if you want it to look authentic) inside the mouth of your volcano. The order in which you mix the two doesn’t really matter. We usually just alternate because this is an activity the kids want to do over and over. Plus, it’s fun to see which order of combining the two creates a better eruption.

Two great books to read include The Magic School Bus Blows Its Top and The Magic Tree House: Vacation Under a Volcano.

photo by wallula junction

 

3. Human Body. One of my kids’ favorite activities any time we’ve studied the human body is making a life-size cut-out and using the organ templates from the reproducible book, My Body, to cut out and add the organs in the right places.

At the risk of looking like a total Magic School Bus junkie, we like The Magic School Bus: Inside the Human Body for this one.

4. Earth Model. One of the best projects we ever did was our paper mache Earth model. It was a great, hands-on way to visualize the Earth’s layers. If I had it to do over again, the only thing I would have done differently would be to try to keep the layer sizes more to scale.

A great book resource for this one would {ahem} be that Magic School Bus book I mentioned in number 1.

photo by weird, unsocialized homeschoolers

5. Nature Study. There’s nothing better for science than just getting out there and experiencing it. I’d encourage you to check out my 5 best tips for nature study. In addition to those tips, a couple of my favorite resources for young kids are Nature in a Nutshell and the Backyard Books series.

What are some of your family’s most memorable science projects?

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Kris is the sweet-tea-drinking, classically eclectic, slightly Charlotte Mason mom to her three Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has lost nearly 90 pounds, going from morbidly obese couch potato to runner. She chronicles her transformation on her fitness blog, Eclipsed.


Comments

  1. says

    These are great ideas! I want to try them all with my second graders. We are not doing any formal science curriculum with her, just reading various science books that we have….I actually have that Magic School Bus book you referenced. When we finish reading our health/nutrition/fitness books, I am going to choose that book next. She would love doing the human body activity! Thanks for the simple ideas.