Summer is the perfect time to head outside and try these classic science ideas. These top 10 summer science activities are on our must try list. We’ve done them all before, but they are definitely worth repeating again and again.
Top 10 Summer Science Activities
#10 Go on a Scavenger Hunt or Treasure Hunt
Scavenger hunts and treasure hunts work on observation skills and critical thinking. You can incorporate other science topics or skills into the hunts as well. I have two favorites for the summer.
Our Sight and Sound Nature Scavenger Hunt gets kids outside exploring nature. Download the scavenger hunt list.
We created the Backyard Treasure Hunt with Picture Clues for a sponsored post, but the treasure can be anything. Print out the picture clues (there are 18 to choose from) and create a fun backyard treasure hunt for friends and family. Using picture clues lets even the youngest treasure hunters play along.
#9 Catch Fireflies
My thoughts of summer always include seeing fireflies outside. Do you know how to attract fireflies so you can catch them or observe them up close? Read this post to learn how to attract fireflies. It also includes more info about the fascinating lightning beetles.
#8 Make a Volcano
Experimenting with baking soda and vinegar is my son’s most requested science activity. Building a volcano just makes the reaction all the more cool. My favorite way is to create an easy tape volcano. All you need is masking tape and a few kitchen supplies.
Check out 10 more ways to make a volcano with kids. Do you have a favorite way?
#7 Explode Some Baggies
What do you get when you combine baking soda and vinegar in a plastic baggie? An expanding bag that pops! This classic science activity is best done outside. Get the direction for the Exploding Baggies here.
#6 Build an Air Fort
I spent many childhood summers building forts in my grandma’s backyard with my cousins. If it’s just too hot to get outside or it’s a day full of storms, try building an air fort inside. All you need is a fan and a fitted sheet. See how we build an air fort in this post.
#5 Observe Earthworms or Insects
Part of being outside during the summer is exploring nature and observing the wildlife you see. Be on the lookout for earthworms and try these backyard earthworm experiments. It’s also super fun to hunt for insects and compare their features. This insect investigations post has tips for finding and observing the insects with kids.
#4 Collect Rocks
All three of my kids love to collect rocks. Since we’re outside more in the summer, they tend to collect more rocks. Every rock is special to them. Read my tips for getting started rock collecting with kids. What do you do with all of the rocks your kids collect? Do you display them, keep them in a box, or start a rock garden? Learn more about rocks in this post.
#3 Have a Jumping Contest
This is my favorite simple experiment for toddlers and preschoolers. All you need is a measuring tape and some space to jump. It’s perfect for the whole family. Who can jump the farthest? Can you change the type of jumps you do? Check out our J is for Jumping Experiment post for all of the science found in this activity.
#2 Freeze Some Vinegar and/or Baking Soda
Our favorite way to explore baking soda and vinegar in the summer is to freeze it. Get the instructions for frozen vinegar and make a cool summer science activity for your kids.
#1 Build a Boat
This collection of boat building designs and experiments is consistently one of my most popular posts. There are so many options for this activity – from the materials you select to the design to the way you choose to test your boat. Will it float? Is it fast?
What are your favorite summer science activities for kids? Come share with us on Facebook.
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