Use the snow to set up a fun (& free!) science experiment for kids! Playing with snowballs, kids can observe the interaction between temperature and melting rate.
Snowball Science Project Set Up
You really don’t need much for this one!
- Container to carry snowballs inside
- 3 containers (1 freezer safe, 1 for the refrigerator, 1 for room temperature)
First make several snowballs. After you’re done throwing them at each other, talk about what they think will happen to the snowballs once they are inside.
We found 3 locations inside with different temperatures: the freezer, the refrigerator, and the kitchen (room temperature). Put one snowball into each location.
The Snowball Experiment
Ask the kids which area is warmest: the table, the refrigerator, or the freezer? Next ask where they think the snowballs will melt the most quickly and where he thought the snowballs will melt the slowest. They can write this down (or you can do this part for them).
Set a timer to go off at set intervals to check on the snowballs – we did once an hour. Observe which snowballs showed signs of melting, and how much of each snowball had melted.
We continued this until the snowball on the table had melted, and the snowball in the refrigerator began melting (it didn’t melt fully until the next day).
Introducing Science Vocabulary
Play is the best way to introduce science ideas to kids!
This snowball experiment is a great way to bring up some of the “science-y” words. As you move through the experiment, use words such as experiment, hypothesis, observation, and conclusion when they are relevant. Talk about the words naturally as you do it.
For example, you could say “Which snowball do you think will melt the fastest?” and follow their answer with “great hypothesis!” Let’s write your hypothesis down. After each observation, ask if they remember their hypothesis. Then when we had our conclusion, I asked if their hypothesis was accurate.
I also have a confession – the snowballs are still in the freezer. I let my son talk me into saving the snowballs for summer!
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