If you have a toddler, you know they are often incredibly curious. Children have a natural curiosity about the world around them, and when directed properly, this can turn into a love of science from a young age. During the winter, why not try these fun winter science experiments for toddlers?
There are so many basic scientific concepts that toddlers can learn, and you’ll have a blast too! These winter toddler activities work for parents, grandparents, daycare workers, and preschool teachers!
What is Science for Toddlers?
Most toddlers could not care less about scientific formulas, peer-review, chemical abbreviations, or balancing equations. So, how can they learn science?
At the toddler level, science is strictly about exploring the world and learning about scientific inquiry.
A toddler might ask, “what is snow?” And with a basic science experiment on melting snow, they can learn that snow is frozen water.
In this experiment, a toddler learns about temperature, states of matter, the seasons, how matter can change from one form to another, volume, cause and effect, weather patterns, and more!
A toddler will be focusing mainly on the physical activity of the experiment – playing with materials, touching things, exploring through the senses, and getting a basic idea about how the world works.
This is all a toddler needs to have a solid science foundation that can travel with them through preschool and beyond!
My girls have been introduced to science since they were babies, and all of them love science class in school the most (we have kids in elementary and middle school currently).
Tips for Doing Science Experiments with Toddlers
Science for toddlers isn’t complicated or time-consuming. Toddlers learn about the world through the senses, and science experiments that focus on touch, smell, hearing, seeing, or tasting are perfect for toddlers.
Don’t expect your child to suddenly learn the periodic table overnight, or really, any fact-memorization at all. Science in the toddler years is about teaching children how to look at the world as a puzzle that can be solved.
If they have a question about the world, it can be answered with science.
Toddler science experiments should show toddlers that there are really amazing things in the world, and that by asking questions, they can learn about the world and how it works.
Now on to the toddler winter science experiments!
The Complete List of Winter Science Experiments for Toddlers
If you have toddlers, then they will LOVE these winter science experiments for toddlers!
The key to science in the early years is simplicity. Don’t expect anything crazy, but try to use scientific words when showing the activity to your toddler, and you may be surprised at how much they pick up from simple toddler science experiments!
We love these winter science experiments for toddlers:
Make a snowstorm in a jar and learn about chemical reactions and weather.
Try the melting snow activity and see how much space snow takes up (you can also do this with crushed ice if you live in a warm area).
Make a penguin winter sensory bin and play in fake snow.
It takes just a little bit of prep to make instant ice in 5 minutes, and toddlers will feel like the science experiment is magic!
Go ice fishing and see if you can use salt to pick up ice cubes with just string! Toddlers will love playing with this one.
Play with winter slime and confetti snowflakes. Toddlers will love squishing and stretching the slime!
Put your hand in shortening and learn about how animals stay warm in the winter.
Learn about exothermic reactions and make ice cream in a bag at the same time. Toddlers will love shaking up the bag to mix the cream.
Make a snowflake sensory bottle and discover the season of winter all safely within a jar.
Toddlers will beg to repeat this winter-themed magic milk experiment over and over again.
When toddlers are bored of science, they might like this fun penguin dress-up activity.
Don’t forget to record your data in a science notebook!