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It is far too hot right now.
It’s not just hot, it’s also humid.
As an adult, I have enough sense to keep calm and move at an easy, leisurely pace.
Kids, it appears, are born with no kind of sense at all.
What we need, is something to cool us down. Something that involves ice. Or better yet, an ice block.
Ice excavation sensory play
This required some preparation on my part, and usually I’m not too good at preparation. So it’s fortunate and a small miracle that I remembered this time. I might even get organized sometime!
The boys truly care about their cars; it’s their favorite thing to play with and we have cars or things with wheels in all shapes and sizes.
My youngest son, C, even seems to be of the conviction that as long as you have at least one car in your hand, everything will be allright. He always hands out cars to people and even takes them into bed.
So I set out to gather our car stuff while the boys were out playing somewhere else. I manage to do a lot behind their backs, but steeling their cars isn’t going to be one of them
Then, I found a large enough container to pile everything into and added water. I cleared some space in the freezer and presto, the save the cars from the ice excavation was under way!
Next, to find some stuff that the boys could do the ice excavation with. A boy on a rescue mission needs the right tools, right? So I found their plastic screw drivers and added some spoons to that.
I also made little bowls with salt and food coloring (the food coloring for no other reason than that it looks fun).
Two days later, I set the boys to work.
RELATED: Lego Duplo Blocks Wash
Quick wee side note: Because I know how hard it can be to come up with fun games each time, I’ve created a 7-day challenge for parents of toddlers and preschoolers. This is a great way to get started if you’ve fallen out of the habit of playing with your kids, or to learn about fresh ideas and activities.
Each day for 1 week, you will receive an e-mail with an activity that you can do with your kids. Join the newsletter and start your 7 days of play today!
Ice science experiment
I told them I had a surprise game for them; they always love them. Then I told them that the game was hidden somewhere…and they started to tear the house apart, so I directed them to the kitchen.
Once in the kitchen, they proceeded to inspect every cupboard and drawer, but found nothing. Q then took a more systematic approach, starting at one end of the kitchen and working his way across it. Which led him to the freezer.
Removing the container with frozen toys, Q said “Mommy, what did you do that for?” LOL
I ran some hot water across the bottom of the container to loosen the ice block up a bit.
Step one in our little science experiment game: they learned that how water melts ice. This might seem fairly obvious to you and me, but it’s new to little children.
Then, I took them outside where I handed them spoons and salt and set them to work.
After a while, I also gave them a couple of toy buckets with warm water to help them along a bit more.
Then, our little kids’ science experiment continued when I suggested they add some salt on top of the ice. You know how the roads are salted in winter? I know this happens, but I’d never seen it in action before, and it was certainly new to the kids 🙂
A kind of white, watery substance started cutting little rivulets into our ice block.
Tip: don’t make the ice block too big! It’s probably better to make several smaller ice blocks, this big one was really a challenge!
It kept them busy for about 30 minutes, which in kid’s time is an eternity!
Ice excavation sensory play supports:
- Cognitive skills
- Sensory play
- A love for science experiment
What you need for ice excavation sensory play:
- a plastic container(s);
- some toys;
- warm water;
How to play ice excavation sensory play:
Give the freezer about 2 days to freeze everything. Things did look pretty solid after the first day already, but allow for 2 days to be safe.
Dump the toys into the container.
Fill with water.
Set in the freezer.
Run hot water across the bottom of the container to loosen the ice.
Hand the kids some spoons, salt and warm-ish water to free their toys with.