18 Fun Rain Activities for Preschoolers and Kindergarteners
By: Author Tanja McIlroy
Posted on Last updated: 17 November 2023
Categories Preschool Themes
Here are some fun rain activities for preschoolers and kindergarteners, to teach them about this important resource and part of life.
Whether you are doing a rain theme or just learning about rain on a rainy day, these hands-on activities will spark lots of creativity and fun learning.
There are ideas for arts and crafts, music and movement, language and dramatic play, sensory play, science and maths and outdoor play.
Art and Crafts
Rain art preschool activities give an opportunity to explore the colours related to rainy days and the innate wet quality of this weather phenomenon.
Try the following rain crafts for preschoolers on a sunny or drizzly day.
Drawing Rainy Day Chalk Art
Offer kids a selection of construction paper and coloured chalk. Ask them to draw a scene of things they could see outdoors on a rainy day (including rainbows).
With medicine/water droppers, children then become “rainclouds” to squeeze droplets of “rain” onto their pictures.
Fold unwaxed, plain paper plates in half, cutting on the fold lines to form two umbrellas. With paints or markers, kids decorate these as umbrella canopies.
Cut or tear cardboard or construction paper into the shape of the letter “J,” to glue or tape onto each canopy as the umbrella handle.
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Fingerprinting Rain Drops
Children glue cotton balls near the top of their grey sheets of construction paper for clouds.
Using blue tempera paint or washable stamp pads (shown below), they pat the tips of their fingers into the colour and then press onto their papers to form raindrops falling from the clouds.
- High Quality and Beautiful Color: Non-toxic and easy to clean, 16 shades of gorgeous colors looks pretty good,...
- Applicable Wide: Applicable to fabric, wood, paper, scrapbooking card-making, posters, notepads, journals. The...
Music and Movement
Showers, wind, lightning and thunder lend themselves nicely to movement and music in a rain theme for preschoolers.
Songs and Rhymes
Here are some popular kids’ songs about rain:
Incy Wincy Spider
Incy Wincy spider went up the water spout Down came the rain and washed the spider out Out came the sun and dried up all the rain So, Incy Wincy spider went up the spout again
It’s Raining, It’s Pouring
It’s raining, it’s pouring; The old man is snoring. He went to bed and he Bumped his head And he couldn’t get up in the morning.
Rain, Rain, Go Away
Rain, rain, go away. Come again another day. Daddy wants to play. Rain, rain, go away.
Rain, rain, go away. Come again another day. Mommy wants to play. Rain, rain, go away.
Listen to the rest of this version by Super Simple Songs .
I Hear Thunder
I hear thunder! I hear thunder! Hark don’t you, Hark don’t you? Pitter, patter raindrops, Pitter, patter raindrops, I’m wet through and so are you!
Red and yellow and pink and green , Purple and orange and blue . I can sing a rainbow , Sing a rainbow , Sing a rainbow too .
Here are more fun rainbow songs for kids .
The Wheels on the Bus
Add in any more of the verses of this song:
The wheels on the bus go round and round Round and round Round and round The wheels on the bus go round and round All day long
The wipers on the bus go swish, swish, swish Swish, swish, swish Swish, swish, swish The wipers on the bus go swish, swish, swish All day long
Here is a great collection of songs about the weather for preschoolers .
More Rain Songs by Raffi
- Robin in the Rain
- Ducks Like Rain
Listening and Dancing to Rain
Play background music of raindrops falling or gentle thunder sounding while children dance, play or rest.
“Making Rain” with our Bodies
Lead children in this body percussion activity to signify the beginning, peak and dying away of a thunderstorm.
- Quietly rub fingers together.
- Rub both hands together to make a soft sound.
- Softly clap hands together.
- Snap your fingers.
- Resume clapping but louder this time.
- Clap even louder.
- Clap very loudly.
- Stomp both feet and clap for a lot of noise.
- Then do the steps in reverse until all is quiet.
Although rain can sometimes get in the way of our plans, it is essential to provide drinking water, make plants/food grow and help to keep the earth’s temperature stable.
Discuss all these topics, read fiction and non-fiction books about rain, tell stories and view videos about rainy and stormy days.
Sharing Books and Videos
These books are available online:
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs – Judi Barrett
- Sold as 1 Each.
- Age group and grade: Ages 4 - 8 and grades pre-school - 3rd. Publication date and year: April, 1982. Would it,...
Thunder Cake – Patricia Polacco
No products found.
A Rainbow of My Own – Don Freeman
- Freeman, Don (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
Umbrella – Taro Yashima
- Yashima, Taro (Author)
Split! Splat! – Amy Gibson
- Gibson, Amy (Author)
All the Water in the World – George Ella Lyon
Pignic – Matt Phelan
- Hardcover Book
- Phelan, Matt (Author)
The Rain Came Down – David Shannon
Who Likes Rain? – Wong Herbert Yee
- Yee, Wong Herbert (Author)
Make a Wordless Picture Book
Share the wordless picture book Rain by Peter Spier.
- Spier, Peter (Author)
After “picture walking” through the book and discussing all the events illustrated, challenge kids to come up with one or two sentences to “tell the story” for each page as you write their words.
This is an effective book to reinforce top-to-bottom and left-to-right progression through pictures, as well.
Water is the key ingredient for messy play and these activities will keep kids happy for hours.
Relaxing with Water
For indoor water play , fill a water table or plastic tubs with water. Offer a variety of plastic containers and toys to fill, pour and float.
“Wallowing” in the Mud
For an outside sensory experience , have children work in the mud. Provide toy vehicles, shovels and buckets for muddy play.
Add clothing, footwear, umbrellas and other props to the dress-up area that fit all types of weather, especially rainy days.
Acting Out a Story with Puppets
Practise retelling a fictional story about the rain that you have previously read. Ask kids to then act out the story with puppets .
Pantomiming a Story or Weather Event
Discuss different emotions and how those can be expressed on faces without saying a word.
Challenge kids to act out a weather event, such as a thunderstorm approaching, showing emotions through their actions and facial expressions only.
Try these feelings activities too.
Experimenting with a Rain Cloud in a Jar
If you are wondering how to explain rain to preschoolers, here is a fun way.
- Fill a wide-mouthed clear jar about ¾ full of water to represent the air.
- Spray shaving cream into the jar over the water so that it mounds a bit out of the top to represent a cloud.
- Using a pipette or dropper, squirt liquid blue food colouring premixed with a bit of water onto the shaving cream several times.
- Watch as the blue seeps through the “cloud” after it becomes saturated and into the “air” as “rain!”
Complete as a group or with each child having their own jar for the experiment. Instead of shaving cream, you can also place a sponge over the jar mouth to use as the cloud.
Here are some more fun shaving cream activities .
Making a Water Cycle in a Bag
Teach kids about the water cycle with this cool activity:
- With a black marker, draw a sun and clouds near the top of a small, sealable plastic bag and a water line of waves about an inch from the bottom.
- Fill the bag up to the water line with water that is coloured blue with food colouring.
- Zip the bag closed and seal it with tape.
- Tape the bag to a window in a sunny location.
The heat from the sun eventually makes the water evaporate and condense near the top of the bag by the clouds.
After condensing for a while, the water droplets slide down the sides of the bag back to the bottom as “rain.”
Combining Counting with a Rainy Day
Share the picture book Raindrop, Plop! by Wendy Lewison with youngsters.
- Lewison, Wendy Cheyette (Author)
Urge them to count along with you while reading and retelling the story.
Measuring Rainfall with a Gauge
Here’s a practical way to teach kids about measurement .
- Cut the top off an empty and clear 2-litre soda bottle about five inches down.
- Children fill the bottom with pebbles covered by water and draw a line with a black marker at that level.
- Then have kids hold the ruler to measure one centimetre/inch at a time, while adults label the increments with the marker.
- Invert the piece of the bottle that was cut off and place it into the opening.
- Set the rain gauge outdoors in the open but where wind and overhanging vegetation do not affect it.
Observe the gauge after a rainstorm to see approximately how much rain fell. Check the news/weather together and compare your results to the official rainfall readings.
Going for a rainy-day walk.
On a warm, rainy day that is free from thunder or lightning, dress for the rain and explore nature with a walk outside, using all senses to experience the weather. Who can see a rainbow?
Playing Outside in the Rain and Mud
On a warm rainy day with no thunderstorm activity, send the kids to play outdoors in the rain, either with rain boots or with bare feet. They will love it!
With a rain theme, preschool children can learn more about the science and necessity related to this form of precipitation. They can also learn to appreciate all the sensual beauty of winds, showers and rainbows!
I hope you’ve enjoyed these rain preschool activities. Looking for more ideas? Check out these themes for preschoolers .
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15 Engaging Rain Activities for Preschoolers and Kindergarteners
Rainy days can be challenging for parents looking for ways to entertain their children. Fortunately, plenty of fun activities can entertain preschoolers and kindergartners on rainy days.
These activities will make rainy days more enjoyable, from playing board games to crafting art projects. With the right supplies and creativity, you can create an exciting day indoors that will keep your children entertained and engaged.
Importance of rain activities for kids
Rain activities are essential for kids because they provide hands-on learning and exploration opportunities. These activities can help children to develop their sensory skills, critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving abilities.
They can also enhance their physical and emotional well-being by allowing them to engage with nature and experience the joys of playing in the rain. Engaging in rain activities can also foster a love of learning and an appreciation for the natural world, which are important for a child’s overall development.
Rain Activities and sensory skills development in Kids
Rain activities help to develop a child’s sensory skills by providing opportunities for hands-on exploration and sensory stimulation. For example, playing in the rain allows children to feel the different sensations of raindrops on their skin, the sound of rain hitting objects, and the smell of the rain.
These experiences can help strengthen a child’s sense of touch, hearing, and smell and improve their ability to process sensory information.
Also, rain activities can enhance a child’s visual and spatial awareness as they observe the changes in their environment caused by the rain.
By providing a wealth of sensory experiences, rain activities can help children to develop their overall sensory skills and improve their ability to understand and interpret the world around them.
Rain Activities and gross motor skill development in Kids
Rain activities can also affect children’s gross motor skills development. Gross motor skills involve using large muscle groups in running, jumping, and climbing.
Rain activities, such as jumping in puddles or playing catch with a ball, allow children to practice and improve their gross motor skills.
These activities require coordination and balance, which can help to strengthen the muscles and improve motor control. Additionally, playing in the rain can encourage children to be physically active, essential for their health and fitness.
Rain activities can help children build the strength, coordination, and balance they need to succeed in various physical activities by providing opportunities for gross motor skill development.
Fun and engaging rain activities for Preschoolers
Use rain to make art. .
Making art using the rain as a medium is a fun and creative activity for kids. It can be as simple as using water and food coloring to paint on sidewalks or paper or using rainwater to create unique designs in puddles.
Children can also experiment with different materials, such as leaves, sticks, and rocks, to see how they interact with the rain and create unique patterns.
This activity encourages creativity and imagination and helps children develop their fine motor skills by manipulating materials and creating artwork.
Plus, making art with rain can foster a love of nature and appreciation for the environment as children learn about the water cycle and the role of rain in our world.
Letter tracing activity
Letter tracing is an excellent activity for kids to help them learn the proper formation of letters and improve their handwriting skills. Here’s how you can set up a letter-tracing activity:
You will need paper, a pencil, a handwriting guide, or a worksheet with letters to trace.
Explain the activity:
Show your child how to trace the letters using the guide or worksheet. Emphasize the importance of following the strokes in the correct order and using proper pressure.
Have your child trace each letter several times, encouraging them to focus on forming the letters correctly and neatly. You can also have them trace over the letters with a pen or marker to reinforce the strokes.
Rain jar activity
A rain jar is a simple and fun activity for kids that helps them learn about the water cycle and the role of rain in the environment. Here’s how you can set up a rain jar:
You will need a clear jar, water, food coloring, oil, and a dropper.
Fill the jar with water:
Fill it with water and add a few drops of food coloring to give it a tint. Then, slowly add a layer of oil to the top of the water. The oil will float on the surface and help to represent the atmosphere.
Watch the rain:
Slowly add water to the jar using the dropper, representing rain falling from the sky. Observe how the water sinks through the oil and mixes with the colored water, representing how rainwater reaches the ground and mixes with other water sources.
Discuss the water cycle:
Use the rain jar to discuss the water cycle with your child. Explain how rain forms in the atmosphere, falls to the ground, and eventually evaporates and rises back into the atmosphere to form clouds.
Design an Umbrella
Designing an umbrella is a fun and creative activity for kids that can help them develop their imagination, fine motor skills, and sense of color and design.
You will need paper, pencils, markers, crayons, paint, and other decorative materials such as stickers, sequins, or glitter. Show your child how to fold a piece of paper into the shape of an umbrella, and encourage them to use their imagination to design their unique umbrella.
Let your child use their preferred art materials to color, paint, or decorate their umbrella, using as much creativity and imagination as they like.
Once their umbrella is complete, please encourage your child to display it or use it as a prop in imaginative play.
This activity provides an opportunity for creative expression and imaginative play and helps develop fine motor skills as children manipulate art materials to create their designs.
Go for a rainy day walk
Go for a walk in the rain: .
Put on your rain boots and walk in the rain. Encourage kids to jump in puddles along the way.
Observe the changes:
Ask children to pay attention to what they see in the rain that is different from what they see when it’s dry. For example, ask if they see worms on the sidewalk, where the water goes when it runs down the road, and if they see any birds outside.
This activity is a great way to get kids thinking and observing and to explore their environment in a new way.
Measure the rain
Make a rain gauge with your child to measure the rain that falls during different storms.
Measure and compare:
Compare the amount of rain that fell during different storms and note if there are any differences.
Graph the results:
Graph the results over April and see if there are any patterns or changes.
Dry or wet:
Observe if it’s drier at the beginning or end of the month.
This activity can help kids understand the concept of measurement, data collection, and weather patterns.
Drench in the rain!
Embrace the rain by going outside and getting wet. Enjoy the warm weather, playing in the rain, jumping in puddles, and feeling the splashes.
Observe the differences in the strength of the rain by standing at the edge of a roof compared to being in an open area.
Snuggle indoors and make a fort.
Construct a cozy blanket fort with your children on a rainy day. Start by setting up supports using pool noodles, then drape blankets over them to create the walls and roof of the fort.
Once the fort is built, gather pillows, bean bags, and books, and settle in for a relaxing and fun-filled day of reading your child’s favorite stories while listening to the sound of the rain.
Sing Rain songs or dance to rain songs.
Rain songs can be a fun and engaging activity for kids during rain. They can learn the song and improve their language and the time. Here are some popular rain songs for kids:
“Rain, Rain, Go Away” – a traditional nursery rhyme that is simple and catchy and encourages kids to sing along.
“Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head” – originally written for the movie “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” this song has become a classic and fun way to sing and dance in the rain.
“Rain, Rain, Come Again” – a fun and upbeat song that encourages kids to sing and dance along and promotes a positive attitude towards rain.
“I Love the Rain” – a gentle and melodic song that expresses the joy of playing in the rain and enjoying the beauty of nature.
“Rain is a Good Thing” – is an upbeat song that celebrates the positive aspects of rain, such as helping plants grow and providing a cool and refreshing experience.
Wallowing in the mud
Wallowing in the mud can be a fun and educational activity for kids, especially on a rainy day. Here’s how you can set up a wallowing in the mud activity:
Find a suitable area:
Look for a muddy park or open field area where kids can safely play and explore.
Ensure kids wear old clothing and waterproof footwear that they won’t mind getting dirty.
Explore the mud:
Encourage kids to explore the mud, feel the texture, make footprints, and dig in the mud with their hands and feet.
Let kids play and have fun, jumping, splashing, and wallowing in the mud. This can be a great opportunity for kids to engage in imaginative play and exercise gross motor skills.
After the activity, ensure kids wash their hands and change into clean clothes.
This activity is an excellent way for kids to connect with nature, learn about the properties of mud, and develop their gross motor skills, creativity, and sense of play. However, it’s important to emphasize safety and hygiene and to supervise kids closely to ensure they don’t put mud in their mouths or get mud into their eyes or ears.
ideas to keep kids engaged on a rainy day
Rainy days can allow kids to engage in fun and educational activities that keep their minds active and stimulated. Here are some ways to keep kids learning while having fun on a rainy day:
Indoor games and puzzles:
Board games, card games, and puzzles are fun and educational activities that can help to improve problem-solving skills and strategic thinking.
Arts and crafts:
Arts and crafts activities, such as painting, drawing, or sculpting, are great ways to encourage creativity and develop fine motor skills.
Cooking and baking:
Introducing kids to basic kitchen skills, measurements, and following recipes can be fun.
Reading and storytelling:
Reading books and telling stories are great ways to improve literacy skills, expand vocabulary, and develop a love of learning.
Simple science experiments, such as making a rainbow in a jar or observing the behavior of raindrops, can be a fun and educational way to learn about science and the world around us.
I’m a former teacher with a background in child development and a passion for creating engaging and educational activities for children. I strongly understand child development and know how to create activities to help children learn and grow. Spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, and volunteering in my community.
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30 Fascinating Weather Activities for Preschool
June 6, 2022 // by Brittney Hallmark
Weather is an interesting topic for children because they can see it and relate to it! Daily weather, kinds of weather, and their favorite weather are some good topics to get you started. Be sure to incorporate hands-on weather activities, sensory activities, motor skills, and books about the weather into your lesson planning. When planning your weather-themed unit, check out the following 30 ideas in this fun compilation of weather-themed activities!
1. Raindrop Art
Raindrop art can be tons of fun for little ones! Let them draw their own picture and then add colored water as rain. Little ones can use a dropper to sprinkle little droplets over their pictures and as it dries, it creates raindrop art.
Learn more: Pre K Printable Fun
2. Cloud in a Jar
This simple science experiment is a fun way to teach students more about how clouds form. This will be a great addition to a preschool weather theme and would follow up with a nonfiction book about the weather to demonstrate new learning in person.
Learn more: Gift of Curiosity
3. Shaving Cream Clouds
Shaving cream clouds can be a lot of fun for little ones to create and watch. Adding droplets of food coloring and watching the art happen before their little eyes is a great way to let little ones be involved and learn more about clouds.
Learn more: One Little Project
4. Rain Stick Craft
Sensory play is super important for preschool-age students. This do-it-yourself rain stick is a hands-on activity that will be fun to make and fun to use! Students can decorate their rain sticks and use them to create fun music inside the classroom.
Learn more: Planning Playtime
5. Roll and Cover Rain
Roll and cover is a fun game to practice number recognition. Students can roll the dice and then cover the numbers. They could also practice counting to that number or practice writing the number as well.
6. Snowman Word Families
Snowman word families are great for beginning readers. These would be great for station or center work or to be used as independent work. Students can use pictures to help them decode the words in each word family.
Learn more: 123 Homeschool 4 Me
7. Snowman CVC Word Builders
Students love to build things! These CVC snowmen are great literacy practice for building your own words. Students will love using these in centers or as independent work!
8. Tornado Experiment
Tornado weather is interesting and good for students to learn more about. This tornado experiment is a good way for students to see what tornados look like and can be paired with nonfiction books to teach more about the science behind this weather phenomenon.
Learn more: Natural Beach Living
9. Snow Dough Sensory Bin
Snow sensory bins make for hours of fun! Use a few simple ingredients to create a fake snow mixture for students to explore with arctic animals. Students will have fun exploring the texture and learning more about snowy and icy weather.
10. Stormy Art Project
White paper and gray paint can make for some stormy artwork! Let students' creative juices flow as they create their own stormy weather and design it to represent a thunderstorm.
Learn more: Buggy and Buddy
11. Weather Chart
Daily weather charts are a great way for students to learn more about the weather. Let students track the temperatures and the type of weather each day. This would be a great addition to a dramatic play center.
Learn more: A Little Pinch of Perfect
12. Umbrella Craft
Beautifully swirled paint artwork creates this lovely umbrella craft. It can be done with finger painting or with marble rolling. Students can further practice fine motor skills by cutting out their own raindrops.
Learn more: Teaching Mama
13. Rainy Clouds Art
This rain cloud craft is a great to simulate rain from the clouds. Using drops of water with blue food coloring, students can create the rain and then add cotton balls to serve as the clouds up top. This fun weather art activity is sure to be a hit!
14. Raindrop Alphabet Sort
Alphabet sorts are good practice for young learners, as they are still building their literacy foundations. Sorting lowercase and uppercase letters is great for letter and sound recognition. Laminate these for repeated use in centers.
Learn more: From ABCs to ACTs
15. Counting Cloud Fun
Math and fine motor practice, this activity is great for centers or independent seat work! Let little ones count out the paper clips and link them onto the clouds. Laminate and hole punch for repeated use in centers.
Learn more: Kindergarten Rocks
16. Raindrop Number Tracing
Great math practice, this rain cloud number tracing activity is also good motor skills practice. Print and laminate these cards for repeated use, as students use dry erase markers to practice the tracing.
Learn more: Frogs and Fairies
17. Sun Visors
Another fun art idea is a homemade sun visor. Simply use a paper plate and ribbon to craft the sun visor. Students will enjoy decorating it with colorful stickers and washable markers.
Learn more: Preschool Plan It
18. Rainy Day Booklet
This simple emergent reader is great for practicing sight words and numbers. It is good for counting practicing and handwriting as well. Students can add the correct number of raindrops to each page to match the number.
19. Weather Sensory Counting Bin
Weather sensory bins are sure to be one of your favorite weather activities. This particular weather sensory bin allows the opportunity for extra math practice by counting with the number cards.
Learn more: Fantastic Fun and Learning
20. Raindrop Beginning Sound Match Up
Add this beginning sounds rain cloud practice to your collection of weather activities. This is good practice for vocabulary and beginning sound practice. Let students match the pictures to the letter on the cloud for the correct beginning sounds.
21. Weather Sensory Bottles
Much like a sensory bin, these sensory bottles are great for many reasons! These can be used in a calm-down spot or to explore different types of weather. The small bottles are good for small hands, and students can even help make these.
22. Little Cloud Activity
Little Cloud is a children's classic picture book by the famous Eric Carle. After reading the book, let students craft their own clouds. Use blue paper or let them use blue paint on white paper before adding their cotton ball cloud creations.
Learn more: I Can Teach My Child
23. Fine Motor Sun Craft
Adorable and fun, this sun art activity is great practice for motor muscles. A rainy day would be the perfect time for art ideas, like this bright sunshine. Little hands will enjoy this craft, all while getting extra motor skill practice!
24. Raindrop Letter Match Up
This activity is great practice for individual letters and sounds. Print the raindrop letter cards and match those to the alphabet mat. Literacy activities for preschoolers are always great practice for building a solid foundation for reading!
25. Water Cycle in a Bag
Learning about the water cycle can be a lot of information for little learners. Use the weather song and pictures for children to see the process. Fill the plastic bag with colored water and use a black sharpie marker to draw the process so students can watch the process.
Learn more: Playdough to Plato
26. Dramatic Play Meteorologist
One of the most fun and easiest preschool weather activities is dramatic play. This play center is a great way for students to act as meteorologists and use verbal skills to talk about the weather and give a pretend weather forecast.
Learn more: Little Illuminations
27. Cloud Counting Mats
Cloud counting mats are perfect for using to practice math skills. Let students roll a number and count the dots to verify the number. Then have them count out the crystals on the cloud mat. For an added bonus, you could laminate the clouds and have students write the numbers with dry-erase markers.
Learn more: Little Illimunations
28. Newspaper Kites
Creating kites out of recycled newspapers is a great way for students to learn more about windy weather. It is important for students to learn about many kinds of weather. Students will have fun crafting their kites and taking them out for a test flight!
Learn more: Living Well Spending Less
29. What to Wear Weather Match Up
Teaching kids about the weather and how to dress appropriately for it is an important life skill! Students can look at the weather cards and the clothing options in the pictures to decide which weather matches which outfit.
30. Raindrop Suncatcher
Let little ones use blue tissue paper on the contact paper sticky side in the shape of a raindrop. Students can use different shades of blue and white to fill in the raindrop. Enjoy this weather craft by hanging it in the window for all to see!
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Fun Game Ideas for Rainy Day Play
Wet weather day? Head outside anyway!
Tim Hall / Digital Vision / Getty Images
For most families, a rainy day means being cooped up inside, quiet activities like watching movies, playing video games, making puzzles , or reading a book. But just because it's wet outside doesn't mean you have to spend your day indoors. With some creativity, you can turn a little rain into a lot of fun.
Staying Active on Rainy Days
Study after study has shown that kids do not get enough physical activity . A preschooler (a child between ages 3 and 5) needs to move around throughout the day to help develop growth, motor function, and cognitive skills. On a sunny day, it's easy to head outside for some active fun, but what about when the weather isn't so great?
Fun Rainy Day Games and Outdoor Activities
While you can certainly find plenty of games for inside play , if it's just raining, consider putting on your rain boots and raincoat and heading outside anyway. You can make the most out of the wet weather with these rainy day games that'll keep your preschooler—and you—happy, active, and engaged.
Focus on Physical Sensations
Make your rainy day all about sensory exploration. Catch raindrops on your tongue, hands, and feet. Blow bubbles and see who ho can make the biggest one? Or choose a visual activity, and bring out some washable paints and paper and let the rain make a masterpiece.
Choose Educational Activities
A rainy day is a great time to teach your kids about science and nature. Take a look at the earth: the dirt, the sand, the grass. How does the rain change these things? Go for a walk in your neighborhood and ask your child to tell you about how the rain makes things look different. You can also work in a math lesson by putting out a cup and measuring the rainfall. Let everyone guess how much they think will be in the cup by the time the rain stops.
A rainy day is also perfect for looking for worms as they move up to the surface of the earth. See how many you and your child can find. Look for animal tracks in the mud. Try to guess which animal made the tracks. Follow the rain when it falls on the ground. Where does it flow to? Down the street? To a drain? If there are puddles, toss rocks into them. Who can make the biggest ripple? What size rock makes the loudest sound? And don't forget to look for rainbows once the storm passes.
Don't Be Afraid to Get Silly
Kids love to make a mess and what better way to make a mess than by playing in the mud. Make mud pies or sandcastles, depending on your soil type. If you don't mind tearing up your yard a little, you can even let your preschooler slide in the wet grass. For those feeling adventurous set up a wet-weather obstacle course. (Be careful, it will be slippery!) Or try playing some of your preschooler's favorite sports . How does the rain change how the ball moves?
You can also embrace the wetness by turning on your sprinklers or setting up your kiddie pools to play in. If it's warm enough, go outside in your bathing suits and bring some bathtub crayons with you. Who can draw the silliest things on themselves? Listen to the rhythm that the rain makes and have a dance contest. Give a prize to the person who comes up with the silliest rain dance. And don't just jump in the puddles; skip, hop, run, gallop, or walk through them. Who can make the biggest splash?
Think of the silliest thing you can do and just go for it. If it's raining really hard, wash your hair. (This one is sure to make your preschooler laugh hard.) Pretend to be a wet-weather animal like a frog, duck, or fish. Or you can take some inspiration from Gene Kelly and sing in the rain. Pick songs that mention rain, from "Itsy Bitsy Spider" to "Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head," "Rain, Rain Go Away," and "Umbrella."
Precautions for Playing Rainy Day Games
While you won't melt away in the rain, you do want to take precautions against hypothermia as you will cool down significantly if your clothes get wet, especially if there's wind. Be aware of signs of shivering, clumsiness, and confusion, and limit your time outside in wet clothes. Once inside, change into dry clothes and warm up.
Also, be alert to reduced visibility for traffic and take precautions, including wearing reflective clothing or blinking lights when you're walking or biking outside in the rain.
Katzmarzyk PT, Denstel KD, Beals K, et al. Results From the United States of America's 2016 Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth . J Phys Act Health . 2016;13(11 Suppl 2):S307-S313. doi:10.1123/jpah.2016-0321
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. How much physical activity do children need ?
Gao Z, Chen S, Sun H, Wen X, Xiang P. Physical Activity in Children’s Health and Cognition . Biomed Res Int . 2018;2018:1-4. doi:10.1155/2018/8542403
Piercy K, Troiano R, Ballard R, et al. The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans . JAMA . 2018;320(19):2020-2028. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.14854
By Amanda Rock Amanda Rock, mom of three, has spent more than a decade of her professional career writing and editing for parents and children.
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30+ Preschool Weather Activities
March 9, 2019 by Rachel Cooper
Inside: Get inspired with these preschool weather activitie s – including dramatic play, fine motor, art ideas, and more.
Entering the spring months, there are a lot of weather changes happening.
Our days here in Oregon are unpredictably rainy, sunny, cold, or windy.
This provides us with the perfect time to discuss the different types of weather, as children get to see so many examples of it within their natural environment!
Below is a compilation of weather themed art activities, creative sensory bins, fun dramatic play area ideas, and more for your preschool weather theme.
Gravity Rain Cloud Painting – Drip watercolors onto vertically standing paper to create the appearance of rain coming from a cloud. (A Little Pinch of Perfect)
Mosaic Paper Rainbow – Provide squares of colored paper and glue for preschoolers to arrange into a mosaic rainbow. (Daisies and Pie)
Rainy Window – Paint with watercolors onto the back of a baking sheet to make a rainy window print. (Play Teach Repeat)
Umbrella and Rain with Bubble Wrap – Paint bubble wrap blue to look like raindrops plopping down onto an umbrella. (123 Homeschool 4 Me)
Thunderstorm Art – Toddlers will glue lightening bolts and rain drops on top of gray paint to create a storm. (Buggy and Buddy)
Symmetry Clouds – Add white paint to a piece of paper and fold it in half to create a mirrored cloud shape. (Teach Beside Me)
Snowball Painting – Clip pom-poms onto clothespins for toddlers to dip into white and blue paint and stamp snow. (Brilliant Little Ideas)
Paper Plate Umbrella – Cut a paper plate in half to be decorated as the top of an umbrella. (The Chirping Moms)
Raindrop Sun Catcher – Cut a blue outline out of paper and attach to contact paper to be filled with blue tissue paper. (A Day In First Grade)
Puffy Paint Clouds – Mix shaving cream and glue to paint onto blue paper as clouds. (No Time For Flashcards)
Painting with Rain – If you live in a rainy area, leave pieces of paper with powdered tempura paint outside for the rain to mix with the powder and create paint. (Tot School)
Fine Motor Activities
Sun Scissor Activity – Preschoolers will strengthen cutting skills with these printable scissor cards.
Rain Storm Sticky Wall – Make a contact paper sticky wall with clouds for toddlers to stick raindrops onto. (Mama of Littles)
Weather Do-a-Dots – Use these free printable sheets for toddlers to stamp onto weather pictures with do-a-dots. (Easy Peasy Learners)
Lacing Mittens – Hole punch around paper cut-outs of mittens for preschoolers to practice lacing with yarn or shoelaces. (Cachey Mama’s World of Learning)
Button Sun – Preschoolers will button the pieces of yellow fabric to complete the sun. (Happy Tot Shelf)
Rainy Day Water Bin – Learn about rain as you squeeze water from cotton balls (“clouds”).
Weather Sensory Bottles – Put together sensory bottles, each themed around a different type of weather such as snow, sun, and rain. (Two Daloo)
Snow Dough – Fill your sensory bin with this two ingredient dough that feels like snow. (Happy Home Fairy)
Colander rain – Provide colanders, or containers with holes cut into the bottom, to your water table to create rain when water is poured through them. (Crozet Play School)
Rainy Day Bin – Fill your sensory bin with blue beads or dyed rice, along with tiny umbrellas and rubber ducks. (Paper and Glue)
Lightening and Rain Bin – Shape gold pipe cleaners into the shape of lightening bolts, adding in cotton balls and blue marbles for a storm. (Fantastic Fun and Learning)
Build a Cloud – Provide an assortment of fluffy white materials to be mixed into a cloud such as cotton balls, marshmallows, and shaving cream. (A Little Pinch of Perfect)
Thunderstorm Playdough – Make dark gray playdough and provide lightening bolt-shaped yellow pipe cleaners for preschoolers to make a thunderstorm. (Fun Learning For Kids)
Cardboard Rainsticks – Create these simple rainsticks for toddlers to listen to the sound of the rain. (Pink Stripey Socks)
Math and Sorting Activities
Counting Raindrops – Preschoolers will count blue pom-poms to place onto the numbered umbrellas. (School Time Snippets)
Cold vs Warm Clothes – Cut out pictures of various clothing items for preschoolers to sort into cold weather clothes and warm weather clothes. (Mrs Kelly’s Klass)
Weather Matching Activity – Cut out pairs of weather pictures for children to match together. (Powerful Mothering)
Matching Shapes Umbrellas – Use this free printable to match the shape cards to the umbrella with the matching shape. (Our Home Creations)
S unshine Counting Puzzles – Match the number side of the sun with the side of the sun that has the corresponding amount of dots. (Planning Playtime)
Dramatic Play Activities
Weather Station Dramatic Play – Provide pretend equipment such as thermometers, maps, and clipboards for tracking weather patterns. (Early Learning Ideas)
Winter Wonderland – Cover your dramatic play area in pretend snow with activities such as building a snowman. (Lovely Commotion)
Sunny Beach – Set up a sunny beach area with towels and chairs to discuss warm weather. (Pocket of Preschool)
More theme ideas:
Ocean Theme Activities
The Best Transportation Theme Ideas
Setting Up the Beach Theme
Weather Activity Plans
Looking for easy to follow weather activities for toddlers and preschoolers?
I helped create these packets that include hands-on activities that can be modified and adapted to meet the needs of all learners.
For more information, click on the graphics below:
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Weather Activities for Preschool
No matter the season, there’s always weather. Weather activities for preschool can be incorporated in science explorations as well as seasonal and other study themes. Use these ideas to lead your kids to explore all kinds of weather in all kinds of ways.
Weather Activities For Preschool
1. What’s the Weather? Dramatic Play Dress-Up Center (Pre-K Pages) Set up a dramatic play center to play out weather forecaster and dress in weather gear.
2. Three Weather Art Activities (Pre-K Pages) Explore wind art, frost art, and rain art in these fun investigations.
3. Raindrop Plop: Make an Umbrella (Pre-K Pages) Read the book Raindrop Plop! , make an umbrella, and count rain drops as you learn about weather.
4. Weather Theme Movement Game (Pre-K Pages) Roll cubes and move in different ways to locate weather posters.
5. Snow Play Dough (Pre-K Pages) Make snow play dough using only 3 ingredients!
6. The Snowy Day Pocket Chart Activity (Pre-K Pages) Build literacy skills with this fun pocket chart activity based on the book The Snowy Day .
7. Pine Cone Weather Station (Science Sparks) Forecast the weather using pine cones.
8. Shaving Cream Clouds on a Mirror (Parenting Chaos) Reflect clouds and paint matching clouds on a mirror.
9. Splashing in Puddles: Rainy Day Action Song (Let’s Play Music) Sing and pretend to stomp in puddles and walk in the rain.
10. Weather Station (Kitchen Counter Chronicles) Set up a precipitation gauge and chart the weather.
11. Rain Sticks Kids Can Make (Happy Hooligans) Make a rain stick and listen to the rain sounds it makes.
12. Rain Painting (Housing a Forest) Use the falling rain to paint and create with these 5 ideas.
More Preschool Weather Activities
13. How Does It Rain? (Learn Play Imagine) Explore how rain occurs with this fun science experiment.
14. Clouds in Jars (Teach Preschool) Learn about clouds and cloud formations by creating clouds in jars.
15. Cloud Dough (Teaching Mama) Make cloud dough for a fun and easy sensory activity.
16. Exploring Raindrops and Clouds (Teach Preschool) Set up a rain-making station with cotton balls, blue raindrops, and an aquarium.
17. Clouds and Rain Fine Motor Practice (Mom Inspired Life) Squeezing an eyedropper builds fine motor skills in this fun rain/cloud activity.
18. Tornados and Rain Clouds Weather Science (Little Bins for Little Hands) Investigate weather science with these two experiments.
19. Thunder Drum! (Child Central Station) Make a thundering drum from an old metal garbage can.
20. Recording the Weather (Prekinders) Use symbols to record the daily weather.
21. Weather Mobiles (Craftulate) Choose one of these weather-themed mobiles to create.
22. One Windy Day: Leaves and Weather Activity (Sunny Day Family) Pretend to be the wind and blow feathers after reading One Windy Day .
23. Pinwheel Weathervane (Powerful Mothering) Track the wind after making this pinwheel weathervane.
24. Preschool Weather Activities Sensory Bin (Fun-a-Day) Create a sensory bin full of all kinds of weather!
25. Thermometer Printable and Practice (Kids Activities Blog) Make a “thermometer” and practice reading it.
More Science Ideas
- Fall / Autumn
- School Celebrations
- Other Holidays
- Christmas Holidays
- Mother's Day
- St. Patrick's Day
- Valentine's Day
- Polar Region
- In the Garden
- At the Farm
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- In the Kitchen
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- Science Activities
- Gross Motor Skills Activities
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- Letters of the Alphabet Activities
- Literacy Activities
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KidsSoup Resource Library
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Preschool Weather Activities and Crafts
Preschool and Kindergarten Weather Activities, Lessons, and Crafts. "April showers bring May flowers." This saying reminds us that rain helps flowers to grow. It also helps vegetables and other plants to grow. Rain is very important. Without it our rivers and lakes would be empty and we wouldn't have enough water to drink. Use our great weather, rain, clouds, and rainbow activities and printables to help your children learn about the water cycle and the many ways that people use water. Our weather unit and lessons also provide opportunities for your children to learn about weather and its effects. With our fun preschool and kindergarten activities and lessons, children will be able to practice many skills—letter recoginition, counting and numbers, science observation and exploration, and writing, as well as expanding their vocabulary and engaging in other literacy activities. Our weather theme is organized in such a way that you can quickly choose the activities, lessons, and crafts that are just right for your children.
With our Weather lesson plans and activities your preschool and kindergarten children will
- Acquire new weather vocabulary
- Write about their favorite weather
- Learn about the water cycle, rain, and rainbows
- Explore the rainbow colors
- Experience and disover the power of the sun
- Practice fine motor skills
- Discover the properties of wind
Samples of our Peschool and Kindergarten weather crafts and activities available in our KidsSoup Resource Library:
Themes and projects.
Activities and Lessons
Science and Exploration
Booklets and Other
Free Weather Crafts, Preschool Activities, and Printables
Preschool weather centers, dramatic play area, gross motor skills, weather circle time activities.
Extension Activity: Let children choose and sort the clothing and talk about the activities they can do in that type of weather.
Umbrella Walk Talk about umbrellas with children. Explain that people use umbrellas to keep the sun and rain off. Open up an umbrella and have children see how many of them can fit under it. Go for a walk with children in the rain with the umbrella. Have them listen to the rain as it hits the umbrella. If it's sunny, go for a walk with children and the umbrella and discuss how the umbrella shades them from the sun. After children are back inside make a coffee filter umbrella craft.
Coffee Filter Umbrella Craft (Craft description with step-by-step pictures available inside our KidsSoup Resource Libary) Wet the circle coffee filter with water. Use a paintbrush to drip watercolors on the wet paper. Let dry. Fold the coffee filter two times. Twist two pipe cleaners together and form in to a cane shape. Insert the pipe cleaner inside the umbrella. Add a stapler to the bottom of the umbrella.
Weather Rhymes and Book Suggestion
Rain, Rain, Go Away
Rain, rain, go away. Come again some other day. We want to go outside and play. Come again some other day.
Rain on the Green Grass
Rain on the green grass, And rain on the trees. Rain on the rooftop, But not on me!
Weather Watch preschool and kindergarten weekly plan and lessons (Printables and lesson available inside our KidsSoup Resource Libary)
Eency-Weency Spider The eency-weency spider
Went up the water spout. (Move hands up while touching index finger and thumb alternately.) Down came the rain (Move hands down while wiggling fingers.) And washed the spider out. (Cross arms.) Out came the sun (Make a circle with arms above head.) And dried up all the rain. And the eency-weency spider
Went up the spout again. ( Start spider moving up again .)
Science Activity Evaporation Fill two jars with the same amount of water and mark the level of the water on the outside of the jars. Put a lid on one of the jars. Place the jars in a sunny place for a few days. Discuss with children what happened. Have children note that there is more water gone from the jar without lid and that inside the jar with the lid they can see tiny drops of water. Ask questions like: What happened to the water in the jar with no lid? ( The water went into the air. It evaporated. ) What happened to the water in the jar with a lid? ( The water stayed in the jar, Because of the lid, the water wasn?t able to escape or evaporate. )
Rainbows Activities and Lessons
Rainbow purple, Rainbow blue, Rainbow green and yellow, too. Rainbow orange, Rainbow red, Rainbow smiling overhead. (Author unknown)
Rainbow Salad Snack Let children make a "rainbow" salad using the following fruits: red strawberries, orange oranges, yellow pineapple, green apples, blue blueberries, and purple grapes. Children will learn the colors of the rainbow while making and eating a delicious and nutritious snack!
Free Weather Printables
Other great preschool and kindergarten weather theme activities and links:, other weather related kidssoup preschool and kindergarten themes and activities:.
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20 Lovely Rainy Day Activities for Preschoolers
Rainy days can be challenging for preschool teachers and parents alike, as it can be difficult to keep young children entertained and engaged indoors.
These activities are designed to promote creativity, problem-solving, language development, and physical development while keeping children entertained and engaged on even the gloomiest of days.
In this article, we will explore 20 effective rainy day activities for Preschoolers that are engaging, age-appropriate, and easy to set up using common household items.
Indoor Obstacle Course
An indoor obstacle course is an excellent way to promote physical development and gross motor skills. Use pillows, chairs, and blankets to create a fun obstacle course that includes crawling, jumping, and balancing activities. Make it more exciting by adding music and having children take turns timing each other as they complete the course.
Sensory Bin Exploration
A sensory bin is an excellent tool for promoting cognitive development and exploring different textures. Fill a bin with rice, beans, or sand, and add small toys, cups, and spoons. Encourage children to use their hands to explore the different textures and use the cups and spoons to pour and transfer the materials.
Indoor Scavenger Hunt
An indoor scavenger hunt is an excellent way to promote social and emotional development by encouraging children to work together and problem-solve. Create a list of items for children to find around the classroom or home, such as a blue crayon, a teddy bear, or a book with a red cover. Children can work in teams or pairs to find the items, and you can add a timer for extra excitement.
Art and Craft Activities
Art and craft activities are a great way to promote creativity and fine motor skills. Provide materials such as paper, glue, scissors, markers, and paint, and encourage children to use their imaginations to create art. You can provide prompts such as “Paint a rainy day scene” or “Create a collage of things that make you happy.”
Storytime is an excellent way to promote literacy skills and social and emotional development. Choose a book about a rainy day, such as “The Rainy Day” by Anna Milbourne, and read it aloud to the class. Encourage children to discuss their thoughts and feelings about the story and ask questions to promote comprehension.
A dance party is a fun way to promote physical development and social skills. Put on some music and encourage children to dance and move their bodies. You can also teach them simple dance routines or have them take turns leading the dance party.
Related: 10 Music and Movement Activities for Toddlers & Preschoolers
Indoor bowling is a great way to promote hand-eye coordination and gross motor skills. Use plastic cups or empty water bottles as bowling pins and a softball as a bowling ball. Encourage children to take turns rolling the ball and knocking down the pins.
Puzzles and Board Games
Puzzles and board games are excellent tools for promoting cognitive development and problem-solving skills. Provide age-appropriate puzzles and games and encourage children to work together to complete them. You can also teach them new games and rules to challenge their thinking.
Yoga and Stretching
Yoga and stretching are great ways to promote physical development and emotional regulation. You can teach children simple yoga poses or lead them in stretching exercises. Encourage them to take deep breaths and relax their bodies and minds.
A puppet show is a fun way to promote creativity, language skills, and social development. Provide puppets and a puppet theater or create one using a cardboard box. Encourage children to create their own stories and characters and take turns performing for each other.
Sensory Play with Playdough
Sensory play with playdough is a great way to promote fine motor skills and creativity. Provide different colors of playdough and small tools such as cookie cutters and plastic knives. Encourage children to create their own shapes and designs, and use the tools to manipulate the playdough.
Science Experiment with Rainwater
A science experiment with rainwater is a fun way to promote curiosity and scientific thinking. Collect rainwater in a jar or bowl and encourage children to observe it closely. Ask questions such as “What do you notice about the rainwater?” or “What do you think will happen if we mix the rainwater with food coloring?” and guide them through the experiment.
Building Blocks and Legos
Building blocks and Legos are great tools for promoting spatial awareness and creativity. Provide different shapes and sizes of blocks and Legos and encourage children to build structures and designs. You can also challenge them to work together to build a tower or bridge.
Puppet-making is a fun way to promote creativity and language skills. Provide materials such as paper bags, felt, yarn, and googly eyes, and encourage children to create their own puppets. Once they have finished making their puppets, encourage them to create stories and scenarios to act out with their new creations.
Cooking is a great way to promote life skills and math skills. Choose a simple recipe such as no-bake cookies or fruit salad and guide children through the process. Encourage them to measure ingredients, mix and stir, and practice safe kitchen practices. Once the food is finished, have a snack time and enjoy the fruits of your labor!
Create an indoor obstacle course to promote physical development and gross motor skills. Use furniture, pillows, blankets, and other items to create tunnels, balance beams, and other obstacles. Encourage children to navigate the course, working on their coordination and balance.
Shadow Puppet Show
A shadow puppet show is a creative way to promote imagination and storytelling skills. Set up a large white sheet and a light source behind it, such as a lamp or flashlight. Provide cut-out shapes and encourage children to create their own shadow puppets. Once they have made their puppets, they can put on a show for their friends and family.
Story Time and Puppet Theater
Reading books and using a puppet theater is a great way to promote language and literacy skills. Choose a book with colorful illustrations and use puppets to act out the story. Encourage children to ask questions and interact with the story.
Musical Chairs is a classic game that promotes social skills and listening skills. Set up chairs in a circle and play music while children walk around the chairs. When the music stops, they must find a chair to sit in. Each time the music stops, remove one chair until there is only one chair left and one child remaining.
A scavenger hunt is a fun way to promote problem-solving and critical-thinking skills. Create a list of items for children to find around the house or classroom, such as a pencil, a book, a toy, and a plant. Encourage them to work together to find all the items on the list.
Related: 20 Weekly Themes for Preschool
In conclusion, keeping preschoolers entertained and engaged on rainy days can be a challenge, but with a little creativity and planning, it can be an opportunity for fun and educational activities.
Whether it’s setting up an indoor obstacle course, conducting simple science experiments, or engaging in imaginative play, there are plenty of activities that can keep preschoolers entertained and engaged on even the rainiest of days.
By incorporating these activity ideas into your rainy day routine, you can ensure that your preschoolers are having fun while promoting their overall development.
- 15 Easy Social and Emotional Activities for Preschoolers
- 21 Top Summer Activities for Preschoolers
- 25 Fun Preschool Themes for August (Ideas)
Sohaib Hasan Shah
Sohaib's journey includes 10+ years of teaching and counseling experience at BCSS School in elementary and middle schools, coupled with a BBA (Hons) with a minor in Educational Psychology from Curtin University (Australia) . In his free time, he cherishes quality moments with his family, reveling in the joys and challenges of parenthood. His three daughters have not only enriched his personal life but also deepened his understanding of the importance of effective education and communication, spurring him to make a meaningful impact in the world of education.
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Whether you are working on a weather preschool theme or you just want to introduce a printable weather chart for your kids, this free printable weather chart will be perfect.
Related Post: 20 Weather Printables for Preschoolers
Weather Pathway Game
Pathway games are a great way to make counting and adding come to life! Use this Weather pathway game in your preschool weather unit to add a touch of math to your weather theme!
Montessori Temperature Activity
When you are learning about the weather it is a perfect time to dive into teaching your preschooler about temperature. This Montessori setup is perfect for an engaging and hands-on unit.
Ivory Soap Clouds
Have you ever tried these? It’s such a neat experiment. You put a bar of Ivory (must be Ivory brand) soap in the microwave for a minute and it expands into a big, fluffy, cloud-like shape.
You can add it to some water for a fun outdoor sensory activity!
This sorting activity is the perfect lesson on how to change clothes according to the weather, while also working on sorting!
Hands-on Weather Activities for Preschoolers
Cloud in a jar.
Create a cloud in a jar to help preschoolers understand how clouds form and how rain happens. Fill a clear jar with warm water and place a plate of ice on top of the jar.
As the warm air inside the jar cools down, it condenses into “clouds” on the plate. This visual demonstration illustrates the water cycle and introduces the concept of condensation.
Engage preschoolers in a rainbow scavenger hunt. Place various colored objects around the play area or outdoor space, and challenge the children to find items representing each color of the rainbow. This activity reinforces color recognition and promotes active exploration.
Craft a weather wheel with different weather conditions like sunny, rainy, cloudy, and windy. Attach a spinner to the center.
Each day, have the children spin the wheel and discuss the weather outside. This activity encourages observation, weather vocabulary, and fine motor skills.
Weather Dress-Up Relay
Set up a relay race where children must dress up in appropriate clothing for different weather conditions. Prepare a pile of clothing items such as raincoats, sunglasses, scarves, and hats.
Call out a weather condition, and the first child in line must race to put on the correct clothing item before running back to the starting line.
Teach preschoolers about wind direction and its effects by making wind vanes. Provide materials like straws, paper, and pins.
Help the children create a simple wind vane with a paper arrow on a pin.
Take them outdoors and have them hold their wind vanes, observing how the arrow changes direction based on the wind’s movement.
Language Weather Activities for Preschoolers
Weather word wall.
Create a weather-themed word wall in your classroom. Display words like “sun,” “rain,” “cloud,” “wind,” and more.
Use colorful images alongside the words to help preschoolers associate the terms with their corresponding visuals. Encourage them to use these words in discussions and activities.
Provide preschoolers with simple journals or notebooks where they can draw pictures and dictate short sentences about the weather each day.
For example, they can describe whether it’s sunny, cloudy, rainy, or windy outside. This activity promotes vocabulary development and early writing skills.
Weather Alphabet Matching
Prepare weather-themed alphabet cards with uppercase letters on one card and corresponding lowercase letters on another. Scatter these cards around the room.
Encourage children to find matching pairs and say the letter sounds aloud as they make matches. This activity reinforces letter recognition and phonemic awareness.
Weather Sight Word Book
This 8-page Weather-Themed Mini Sight Word Book helps students learn common sight words and color words through repetition and reading.
Weather Rhyming Game
Create a rhyming game with weather-related words. Place weather word cards (e.g., “rain,” “cloud,” “snow”) face down on the table. Have children take turns flipping over two cards to see if they rhyme.
For example, if they flip over “rain” and “train,” they’ve found a rhyme. This activity enhances phonological awareness and rhyming skills.
Don’t Forget the Weather Story Time!
Select age-appropriate picture books that center around weather-related themes. Read these books aloud to the children and engage them in discussions afterward.
Ask open-ended questions to encourage critical thinking and comprehension, such as “How did the characters feel when it started raining?” or “What do you think the sun does for the Earth?”
Here are some of my Favorite Weather Theme Picture Books:
Singing in the Rain
The Wonder of Thunder
Tap Tap Boom Boom
All About Weather
Stem Weather Activities for Preschoolers
Rain gauge creation.
Help preschoolers construct their own rain gauge using a clear plastic bottle with measurements marked on the side. Place the gauge outside in an open area.
Encourage children to check the gauge after a rainy day and discuss how much rain has collected. This activity introduces basic measurement concepts and the idea of tracking weather data.
Guide preschoolers in making pinwheels from paper and straws. Take them outdoors on a windy day and have them hold their pinwheels up to the wind.
Discuss how the wind makes the pinwheels spin. This activity demonstrates wind as a form of energy and encourages observation and experimentation.
Sunlight and Shadows Exploration
Set up a simple experiment involving objects and sunlight. Place various objects on a sunny windowsill and have preschoolers observe the shadows they cast at different times of the day.
Discuss how the position of the sun affects the length and direction of shadows. This activity introduces concepts of light and shadows.
Teach preschoolers about different types of clouds (cumulus, stratus, cirrus) through a hands-on art project. Provide cotton balls, glue, and blue construction paper.
Have them create their own cloud formations on the paper and discuss the characteristics of each type of cloud. This activity encourages creativity and recognition of cloud patterns.
Weather Sensory Bottles
Create weather-themed sensory bottles with different materials to represent weather conditions.
For instance, make a rain bottle with blue water and glitter, a cloud bottle with cotton balls, and a windy bottle with small beads that move when shaken.
Children can interact with the bottles and learn about different weather phenomena through sensory exploration.
Online Books & Songs for Preschool Weather Activities
Weather – from kids academy.
Learn all about the weather in this fun video from Kids Academy!
Kinds of Weather
Learn about different kinds of weather and activities you can do during sunny, cloudy, rainy, and windy days!
How’s the Weather?
It’s a Super Simple weather song! How’s the weather where you are? Sunny? Rainy? Cloudy? Snowy? How’s the weather today?
This is a great way to start your day during any weather theme!
Circle Time Weather Song
Your students will learn snowy, windy, and rainy vocabulary with this engaging sing along song!
What will the Weather Be Like Today?
This book would be great to use in the classroom to learn about the weather, the seasons, or the climate in different regions. It has a rhyming text that goes through various types of weather asking questions such as “Will it be windy?” “Will there be snow?”
Extra Fun Preschool Weather Activities
Indoor cloud popping.
Create a “cloud” using a white sheet or pillowcase, and have preschoolers toss lightweight, soft objects (like cotton balls or foam balls) into the air, trying to make them land on the “cloud.”
Pretend that the cloud is a bubble that pops when something touches it, adding an element of whimsy to this indoor “cloud” activity.
Rain Dance Party
Play upbeat music and have a rain dance party indoors or outdoors. Encourage preschoolers to dance, jump, and twirl while pretending to dodge raindrops.
You can also use spray bottles with water to lightly mist the air and add to the rainy atmosphere. It’s a fun and imaginative way to celebrate rain!
Sunny Puppet Show
Provide preschoolers with sun-shaped cutouts or puppets. Help them create a short puppet show where the sun interacts with other weather characters like clouds, raindrops, and wind.
Encourage them to come up with silly dialogue and playful interactions for a lighthearted performance.
Windy Bubble Play
On a windy day, set up a bubble station outdoors. Instead of blowing bubbles, let the wind do the work!
Provide children with bubble wands and encourage them to hold them up and watch as the wind carries the bubbles away. This activity combines bubbles and wind for a delightful playtime experience.
Umbrella Parachute Fun
Use child-sized umbrellas or large scarves as parachutes.
Have preschoolers hold onto the edges of the umbrella while you toss lightweight objects (such as foam balls or fabric scraps) onto the umbrella.
Watch as the objects bounce and “float” like parachutes when the umbrella is moved up and down.
Amazon Ready Weather Activities for Preschoolers
At times, an ordinary preschool theme can transform into something extraordinary with the inclusion of unique materials tailored to that particular theme. Here are a few weather-related playthings and activity sets that I personally enjoy incorporating while working with preschoolers.
Ready to Learn Giant Stampers
Learn about the weather, craft scenes, and create decorations with Giant Stampers! This set includes clouds, lighting, raindrops, snowflakes, sun, and wind. Each stamp features rounded, easy-to-grip handles and directional arrows for perfect stamp placement.
Dress Me Weather Bear
Everyone loves Weather Bear! Your child or students can dress him for the weather each day and learn about the weather in the process!
KidzLabs Tornado Maker
Enjoy hours of fun and learning with the 4M KidzLabs Tornado Maker Science Kit. Recycle an empty bottle to construct this battery-operated Tornado Maker.
Seasons & Weather Pattern Blocks
Pattern blocks are always so fun! Let your preschooler learn about the weather in a fun and engaging way with these pattern blocks!
Meteorology Activity Book
Here is a full-color activity book that teaches youngsters the science of Meteorology.
Weather activities for preschoolers are a great way to introduce young minds to the marvels of the weather. Through these activities, children can enhance their cognitive, observational, and language skills while nurturing a sense of curiosity and wonder about the world they inhabit.
So, the next time the sun shines, the rain falls, or the wind blows, seize the opportunity to engage in a weather-themed adventure with your preschooler—they’ll be learning, growing, and having fun all at once!
Looking for more?
If you want to dive deeper with your preschool and pre-k students, check out my Weather Themed No-Prep Learning Packet available in my Teaching Littles Shop.
This weather learning packet includes 33 pages focused on toddler and preschool learning concepts with a weather theme. It introduces the basic concepts that young children need to understand in preparation for preschool and kindergarten.
This packet is great for 2.5-6 year olds who are just beginning to learn these new concepts and can make scribbles, circles, and lines on paper.
The skills practiced in these printables include:
- Same and Different
- Finishing a Picture
- More and Less
- Bigger and Smaller
- First Sounds
Check it out in my Teaching Littles Shop Here!
Twenty Rain Crafts and Rainy Day Activities for Preschoolers
Check out these cute rainy day activities and rain crafts that are perfect to make the time pass when you are stuck inside.
Rainy days can be a challenge for parents and caregivers of preschoolers who are stuck indoors. However, with a little creativity and some basic supplies, rain can also provide a fun opportunity for crafting and learning. Rain crafts and rainy day activities for preschoolers are a great way to keep little ones entertained while also promoting their cognitive, social, and emotional development.
Rain crafts offer a hands-on way for children to explore the weather and learn about the water cycle. They can also help children develop fine motor skills and encourage creativity and imagination. By engaging in these activities, preschoolers can gain a better understanding and appreciation of the natural world around them.
Benefits of Rain Crafts and Activities
Rainy days can be a bummer for preschoolers who are stuck indoors, but rain crafts and activities can provide a fun and educational way to pass the time. Here are a few benefits of rain crafts and activities for preschoolers:
- Promotes creativity: Rain crafts and activities encourage preschoolers to use their imagination and come up with unique ideas. This can help them develop creativity and problem-solving skills.
- Improves fine motor skills: Many rain crafts involve cutting, gluing, and other fine motor skills. These activities can help preschoolers develop hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.
- Teaches science concepts: Rain crafts and activities can also be used to teach science concepts, such as the water cycle and weather patterns. This can help preschoolers develop an understanding of the world around them.
- Encourages socialization: Rainy day activities can be done in groups, which can encourage preschoolers to socialize and work together. This can help them develop social skills and learn how to communicate effectively with others.
Rain crafts and activities can provide a fun and educational way for preschoolers to pass the time on a rainy day. Afterall, sometimes kids need to just be bored!
“Rain rain go away come again another day.”
You won’t necessarily be singing this song after you look through some of these great activities that will hopefully entertain preschoolers and also teach them a little about rain and the atmosphere.
Even though most adults love rainy days, it can be hard on kids who just want to get outside. What can you do especially in the summertime when you need to entertain preschoolers but can’t get outside?
Here are some ideas for rain-themed crafts that kids can do:
- Rain Stick: Using an empty cardboard tube, fill it with rice, beans, or beads and decorate it with paint or markers. When turned upside down, it will sound like rain falling.
- Rain Cloud Mobile: Cut out cloud shapes from white paper and attach them to a string. Hang them from a wooden hoop or a branch and add blue raindrop shapes made of construction paper.
- Raindrop Sun Catcher: Cut out raindrop shapes from clear contact paper. Stick them to a window and add blue tissue paper squares to represent rain.
- Umbrella Painting: Cut out an umbrella shape from paper and let kids paint it with bright colors. Add a handle made of pipe cleaners or ribbon.
- Paper Plate Rainbows: Cut out a semi-circle from a paper plate and let kids paint it with rainbow colors. Add cotton balls to represent clouds.
- Paper Cup Rain Gauges: Decorate a paper cup with markers or stickers and place it outside to measure rainfall.
These are just a few ideas to get started. Have fun getting creative with rain-themed crafts!
Also, don’t forget to check out some cool Rainbow activities and crafts here.
I hope this list of fun rain crafts and activities will keep your little one busy until the sun comes out. Make sure to check out the sky after it rains to see if you catch a glimpse of a rainbow!
Make sure to check out more spring crafts and activities before you leave!
- Butterfly craft with Coffee Filters
- Rock painting with simple acrylic dip technique
- Walking Rainbow water experiment
Twenty Rainy Day Activities and Rain Crafts for Preschoolers
Twenty rain crafts and rain activities for preschoolers.
Check out these cute rainy day activities and rain crafts that are perfect to make the time pass when you are stuck inside. You can also learn a few things about rain with some of these posts and teach your kids about how the weather works.
Coffee Filter Umbrellas - Kid Craft Idea For A Rainy Day
Learn how to make these cute umbrellas with coffee filters. Gather a few supplies and let your kids be creative! This is a great rainy day activity.
Umbrella Craft for Kids
This paper plate umbrella craft is super simple, making it a great activity for early learners especially for rainy days. This project also gives you a chance to explore their creative side while also gaining a little bit of knowledge about the umbrella, itself.
DIY RAINSTICK CRAFT FROM A PAPER TOWEL ROLL
Learn how to create your own DIY rainstick craft from a paper towel roll. Explore the sound of rain with this DIY rain stick.
Make a rain cloud in a jar
Learn how to make a cool rain cloud in a jar and teach kids how rain forms. For this project, you will need shaving cream, a jar, water and dye and lots of creativity!
Rain Drop Stained Glass Art – DIY Paper Craft
Learn how to make these fun see through stained glass rain drops. They are perfect decoration for a rainy day! This is a simple and fun DIY paper craft for kids!
Rainy Day Printables for Preschoolers
If you are looking for free rainy day printables this is it! You will find lots of free rainy day printables perfect for kids 3-6.
How to Make a Rain Cloud in a Jar
See how to make a fun rain cloud in a jar. This is a great way to explore weather with your kids. They’ll see up close how clouds make rain.
Gentle Rain Sensory Bottle
Learn how to create your own sensory rain bottles with just a few supplies. This gentle rain sensory bottle will awe your kids and make them want to learn more about rain and the atmosphere.
Torn Paper Rain Boot Craft
See how to create this easy torn paper rain boot craft. This is a great fine motor activity that will keep your kids busy on a rainy day.
FREE Printable Rainy Day Scavenger Hunt
Check out this FREE printable rainy day scavenger hunt idea! Keep your children from being super bored and help entertain them with this awesome free scavenger hunt.
Three Ways to Paint with Rain!
Learn three ways to paint with rain. You'll learn how to paint with rain and liquid watercolors, rain and markers, rain and Soluble Crayons/Pastels.
Free Water Cycle Printables and Montessori-Inspired Water Cycle Activities
See a handful of cute Montessori-inspired water cycle activities using free water cycle printables … perfect for spring.
How to make a Rain Gauge at Home
This cute kids project teaches kids how to make their own rain gauge with household items. Kids will love watching how the rain fill the mason jar and learning how to measure rainfall.
Raining Sponge – The Pinterested Parent
This rain craft only requires a jar, a sponge, water and food coloring. Kids will learn how a sponge absorbs water similar to a rain cloud!
Rainbow Rainy Day Art STEAM Project for Kids
This is a cute way for kids to create rainy day art! All you need is washable markers, watercolor paper and rain!
Watercolour Pencils Rain Art
This is a great craft that teaches kids how to use watercolor pencils and rain to make beautiful art pieces.
Crayon Drip Rain Cloud ⋆ Sugar, Spice and Glitter
This Crayon Drip Rain Cloud craft is fun to make and even cuter to display. Your kids will love making their own rain clouds and watching the crayons rain!
FUN Bubble Wrap Rain Craft for Spring
This bubble wrap craft is super cute and easy to make. Kids will love seeing the effect that the bubble wrap has on their piece of art!
Rainy Day Paper Collage Art for Kids
Cure indoor boredom with this Rainy Day Paper Collage Art for Kids. Perfect for improving scissor cutting fine motor skills.
Washi Tape Rain Sticks
Make these simple and colourful rain sticks decorated with washi tape. This is a super easy and fun craft for kids
Thanks for stopping by friends!
Sunday 12th of June 2022
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Monday 13th of June 2022
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Posted on Last updated: February 18, 2021 By: Author Kim
Categories STEM Activities
Easy Weather Science Experiments for Preschoolers and Toddlers
Has your child ever asked you where rain comes from? Or what is a tornado? When will it snow? Mine have. And that is awesome.
Weather is an amazing. It is just the sort of real world thing that gets kids excited about learning and STEM . They can see weather. They can feel it, hear it, and touch it.
That hands on learning will get your kids excited about science and wanting to learn more. And it can be very easy to learn about weather. (Bonus, you don’t even have to go outside to these weather activities!)
What's In This Post?
Supplies for a Water Cycle Bag
How to make a water cycle bag, supplies for shaving cream rain clouds, how to make shaving cream rain clouds, supplies for a tornado in a bottle, how to make a tornado in a bottle, supplies to make lightning, how to make lightning, supplies to make a rainbow, how to make a rainbow at home.
- Enjoy the Weather!
Water Cycle Bag
Shaving cream rain clouds, tornado in a bottle, lightning with a balloon, instant rainbow, make an instant rainbow, recommended products, weather science experiments for preschoolers and toddlers.
Help your little ones learn about the weather going on outside their front door with these easy weather experiments!
Water Cycle in a Bag
Rain is a part of the water cycle . What’s the water cycle? It’s the pattern of how water moves through our environment.
The sun heats water on Earth and causes it to evaporate into a gas. This gas collects in the sky as clouds. The water in the clouds then condenses, or turns back into a liquid, and falls back to the Earth as rain.
It can be hard to see the whole water cycle in action, but you can make a smaller model at home!
- Sealable baggie
- Blue Food Coloring (Optional)
Take your baggie and draw a cloud at the top. Add a sun up there too. Then draw some lines to represent water towards the bottom of the bag, about an inch high. (The picture shows what I mean.)
Fill your baggie with water up to the water line you drew. You can add a couple of drops of blue food coloring at this point. It just looks cool and makes the water easier to see.
Seal up the baggie well and tape it to a sunny window. Now you wait.
This is an activity you set up and leave for a bit. It takes a little time for the water to evaporate, but you can check back on it throughout the day and see the different parts of the cycle.
The sun will cause the water to evaporate. You can see it start to condense in the clouds you drew. As the condensation builds up it will slide down the sides of the bag back to the water at the bottom. You made rain!
More Must Do Activities
Our water cycle bag isn’t the only way to make rain happen. You can easily make a sensory rain cloud experience for your kids at home with just shaving cream.
- A Glass or Jar
- Shaving Cream
- Food Coloring
- Dropper or Straw
Fill your glass or jar 3/4 of the way full with water. Add shaving cream to the top. This is our fluffy cloud.
Mix a little blue food coloring with some water. Again, this is option, but it makes the rain much easier to see.
Have your child add drops of the blue water to the cloud. As the water gets heavier and heavier it will start to fall out of the cloud and make rain!
This is what happens with real clouds. The water droplets get heavier and heavier until they fall down as rain. Fun fact: The average cumulus cloud weighs 1.1 million pounds!)
This activity works fine motor skills as your child manipulates the dropper or straw to add the droplets. You can also enjoy the sensory fun of playing with the clouds too.
Looking for more fun? Try these weather tracking worksheets!
Tornadoes are fascinating. But it can be hard to show them to kids as they happen. (Not to mention incredibly unsafe.) But you can make a tornado in a bottle!
- Two 2-Liter Bottles.
- Glitter (optional)
Fill one empty two liter bottle 3/4 of the way full of water. Add a squirt of dish soap and a sprinkle of glitter. (The glitter is optional. I know that is a controversial craft supply ;). It is pretty and fun, but this activity works just as well without it.)
Take the empty water bottle and put it on top of the filled one, opening to opening. Tape the bottles together so no water can escape.
To make your tornado turn the bottles over and swirl the top bottle in a circle a few times. The water inside will form a tornado!
Now this isn’t exactly like the tornadoes that occur in nature. Most tornadoes happen during thunderstorms. They need warm moist air to meet up with cool dry air. These different air currants create a very unstable system. Increasing wind speeds and changing directions are what cause tornadoes.
This is an extremely simplified explanation. For a more complete understanding, you can read this explanation .
Make Lightning with a Balloon
Lightning is another fascinating weather phenomenon that is cool to watch, but you don’t really want your kids out in a thunderstorm. So you can make lightning at home!
- Metal Spoon
- Your Child’s Head
Blow up the balloon. Take your child into a room that you can make completely dark. (We used the bathroom.)
Rub the balloon over your child’s head. Then turn off the light and touch the spoon to the balloon. You should see a spark. You made lightning!
The spark won’t be very big which is good from a safety standpoint. But it is a decent representation of what happens in a lightning storm.
Charges build up in a cloud with negative charges being at the bottom of the cloud. This in turn causes positive charges to build up down on the surface of the earth. Eventually, these two opposite charges build up enough to attract and you get lightning!
Rainbows are beautiful, especially because they usually appear after the rain. But you don’t have to wait for a storm to make one at home!
- Glass of Water
- Piece of White Paper
This one is super simple. Take a glass of water, about 3/4 of the way full, and take it to a sunny spot in your home. Right by a window works best.
Hold your glass of water up over the piece of paper and move it into the sunbeam. You should see a rainbow on the paper!
You might need to move the glass around a bit, but you should get a nice rainbow. Try moving the glass around to see how it changes.
This rainbow is the result of refracted light. The water bends the light waves, separating it into the different wavelengths that make up white light. These wavelengths are the colors we see.
You can learn more about how we see colors (and get fun color STEM activities) here: Color STEM for Kids .
Enjoy the Weather !
There are lots of great resources to learn more about weather. Here is one of my favorites: http://www.weatherwizkids.com/ .
And just get out and talk about the weather with your kids! It is just the sort of real world thing that gets kids excited about learning and STEM. They can see weather. They can feel it, hear it, and touch it.
That realness makes STEM come alive.
Get More STEM Activities
5 Fun and easy weather science experiments for preschoolers and toddlers. Help your children explore their world with these simple learning activities you can do with at home items.
- Sealable Baggie
- Glass or Jar
- Glitter (Optional)
- White Piece of Paper
- Take a baggie and draw clouds near the top and water at the bottom.
- Add water to the bag up to the water line you drew.
- Add a few drops of blue food coloring.
- Seal the baggie and tape it to a sunny window.
- Watch the water cycle over the course of the day!
- Fill a glass 3/4 full of water.
- Add shaving cream to the top of the glass.
- Mix a few drops of food coloring with water.
- Add drops of the mixture to the shaving cream clouds and watch it fall down into the water like rain.
- Fill one empty 2-liter 3/4 full of water.
- Add a squirt of dish soap and a sprinkle of glitter.
- Turn the other 2-liter upside down and place it on top of the first. Tape the necks of the bottles together so the opening are lined up.
- Flip the bottles and swirl the top one to create a tornado!
- Blow up a balloon.
- Rub the balloon on your child's head for 90 seconds.
- In a dark room, touch a metal spoon to the balloon.
- You will get a spark like lightning!
- Fill up a glass with water.
- Stand in a sunny spot (like by a window).
- Hold the glass of water in the sunlight and over a piece of white paper.
- A rainbow will appear from the refracted light!
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Weather Activities and Centers
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It is finally spring, which means it’s time for a weather theme! The weather is always changing and can be different from day to day in the spring. Grab your lesson plan book because I’m sharing all my favorite weather activities designed for preschool, pre-k, and kindergarten. There is even a Weather STEM FREEBIE later in this post!
If you want all my Weather Themed Math and Literacy printables, grab my Weather Math and Literacy Centers HERE << Grab the FREEBIE by entering your email in the box at the bottom of this post . This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a tiny commission when you use my links at no cost to you.
Sky Cup Snack! This adorable snack is easy to make and would be a fun treat for your kids. Make blue Jello in clear cups for the sky, then place whipped cream on the top for clouds. Then sprinkle rainbow sour candies on top. Yum!
Weather Books! On the bookshelf, you can display tons of weather-themed books about clouds, wind, sun, rain, storms, flying kites, water, and snow. My favorite weather book has to be The Big Umbrella , which is about accepting and making room for everyone!
Cloud Writing! Fill a tray with shaving cream (use hair conditioner if you can’t use shaving cream) so students can write letters, numbers, shapes, sight words, or names in the clouds. It’s an easy way to make word work or handwriting FUN! Sprinkle in glitter to pretend it’s raining or snowing! Don’t want the mess? Put the shaving cream or hair conditioner in a baggie, and students can write all the things on the baggie with no mess.
Raindrop Letters and Sounds! Students match the uppercase, lowercase, and beginning sound cards. If you want to make raindrop manipulatives, just write letters on the top of blue glass gems with a Sharpie marker.
Rain Name Craft! My kiddos are loving name crafts right now. As a bonus, they make a super cute bulletin board. Students cut out the cloud and the raindrops for some fun scissor skill work. Then students write their names on the cloud and individual letters on the raindrops.
Rainbow Sight Words! Learning sight words can be fun with a rainbow twist. Students pick a sight word card and read the word, rainbow write it, and build it with the rainbow letter cards.
If you have younger students, have them read, write, and then build letters or student names.
Weather Writing Table! Pack the writing table with weather-themed word cards, stickers, tracing mats, and paper.
Tornado Rhymes! Fill a tray with black beans to create the “tornado.” Then, place half of the rhyme cards in it. Students pick a card and find the matching rhyme.
Weather Sensory Bin! Fill the table with blue rice, blue sequins, and blue gems (raindrops). Add clouds (cotton balls), rainbows (mini erasers or rainbow pom poms), rain (blue glass gems), lightning (yellow foam cut in the shape of lightning bolts), small scoops, and rainbow pill jars (from Dollar Tree).
Rainbow Play Dough Tray! This play dough tray is one of my favorites to date. Make or buy white play dough for clouds. Fill the tray with rainbow beads, rainbow buttons, rainbow pom poms, rainbow pipe cleaners, rainbow match sticks, and large glass gems. Students can sculpt and create rainbows so many different ways, all while strengthening those little fine motor muscles.
Cloud Count! Draw clouds on a large piece of butcher paper using India Ink in a bingo dauber or with a black marker. Students count out the corresponding number of cotton balls and place them on each cloud. Then students match the cloud numbers. To make cloud number gems, use the large glass gems from the Dollar Tree and write a number on each with a Sharpie for students to match as well. This would be perfect for a morning table time activity.
Cloud Shape Cover Up! To keep going with the cloud theme, play shape cloud cover-up for a small group.
Weather Forecast Count! Students can pretend to be a meteorologist and create weather forecasts. Students pick a card and create the weather based on the forecast. If counting is too simple for your kiddos, have them pick two cards to add together and use the addition weather forecast math (not pictured).
Sunshine Patterns! Cut up some pipe cleaners to make sunshine patterns. Sometimes, it’s the simplest activity that gets students excited! This activity is simple yet fun and educational.
Wind Blowing Painting! If you look closely, you will see that students drew the wind by making curvy, swirly lines with a black Sharpie marker. Then, they dropped liquid watercolor on the paper using a pipette (more fine motor work). Lastly, they used a straw to blow the paint just like the wind blows leaves.
Rainbow Windsock! Windsocks are super easy to make. We had students paint a rainbow on a piece of paper, but you can have them just paint their own creative design as well. Once it’s dry, glue or staple the sides of the paper together to make a cylinder shape. Tape a piece of string to the top for a handle. Students can cut crepe paper and glue it to the bottom. Don’t forget to take them outside for students to observe how the wind blows!
Weather Themed Blocks Center! In the blocks center (or STEM center), put weather-themed STEM challenge cards on the board to inspire your little builders to create something weather related. Some fun props you can add are:
- rainbow blocks (Walmart)
- crepe paper (for kite and rainbow making)
- colored felt (for kite and umbrella making)
- blue glass gems (pretend to be rain)
- cotton balls (pretend to be clouds)
- lightning bots (cut from yellow foam)
>>Grab the FREEBIE by entering your email in the box at the bottom of this blog post!<<
Weather Science! Make weather sensory bottles, create weather sorting cards, explore the capacity of different-sized raindrops and explore and create different kinds of clouds at the science table.
How to make Weather Sensory Bottles:
- sunny: blue water and a yellow pom pom
- cloudy: blue water and cotton balls
- rainy: blue water and blue glitter
- stormy: grey water, cotton balls, blue glitter, and foam lightning blots
- hail: water, clear glass gems
- snow: water, white pom poms, clear glitter
- windy: water, felt, or foam leaves
>> Grab my NEW All About Weather Science Unit HERE <<
That was a ton of weather-themed activities, and I hope it helped you plan your own weather theme for your classroom!
>> If you want all my Weather Themed Math and Literacy printables, grab my Weather Math and Literacy Centers HERE <<
Check out the weather activities in action here .
Love these weather centers? Pin this image!
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I’m Jackie, your go-to girl for early childhood inspiration and research-based curriculum.
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35+ Preschool Weather Activities
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35+ Preschool Weather Activities that are STEM and STEAM focused. These STEAM activities for preschoolers will engage in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math.
In the coming three months I am planning a weather unit study for preschoolers alongside two other moms for a preschool homeschool co-op. Through my research of finding STEAM activities for preschoolers that related to weather, I came across some amazing resources for preschool weather activities that I had to share. I hope you’ll find these STEAM activities helpful to you and your planning as you teach your preschoolers!
Preschool Weather Activities
3- Cotton ball Clouds – explore clouds and atmosphere through this process art activity for preschoolers.
4- Observe and Sketch Weather Chart for Preschoolers – learn math through this STEAM activity of a chart, science through weather and art through drawing the weather on their calendars!
5- Rain in a jar – is a super simple science experiment for preschoolers that you can simply tie into weather when talking about rain, science of the clouds, rain and water.
6- All about clouds – Talking about weather through stratus clouds to cumulus and beyond, this is a fun weather activity involving hands on activities.
7- Weather sensory bin – a fun hands on activity for preschoolers to engage their senses when it comes to weather including math with counting and more fun!
10- Weather Unit Study – I’ve pulled an activity from here for our weather co-op unit study. I’ll do the four seasons finger painting with the preschoolers next week!
11- Clouds unit study – A great resource for all things clouds!
14- Printable Weather Sorting Game – This focuses on four different types of weather: rain, snow, thunderstorms, and warm/sunny. You can use the cards in different ways depending on your kids’ ages and abilities.
15- Blowing Clouds with a straw – Blowing Cloud like puffs with a straw from one cloud to another is a wonderful sensory activity and a science exploration. Your children will experiment with how strongly they need to blow each puff to get it to get to the paper cloud.
16- Tornado in a Bottle science and weather experiment- An easy, DIY tornado bottle is pretty exciting for young kids. It’s the perfect complement to a weather science unit too. Hands-on learning about tornados that is safe! Make your own tornado in a bottle.
17- Weather Wheel Free Printable – For preschools and kindergartens, supplement a weather study unit with this cute and free printable weather wheel for kids! Weather observation is one scientific interaction we all have with nature on a daily basis.
18- Melted Snowman Craft and Poem
19- Handprint Craft Paper plate Sun
20- Paper Plate Umbrella Craft
21- Easy Rainbow Art Craft
23- Weather Mobile Art Craft – Here’s a fun craft to add to your collection of weather activities for kids– a homemade weather mobile craft using a small branch. Kids can illustrate different weather symbols and hang them in their mobile to see throughout the year!
24- Thunderstorm Art Project – Incorporate this thunderstorm process art project into your collection of weather activities for kids! This stormy art activity is made using paints and construction paper and is perfect for toddlers, preschoolers, and kindergarteners. Such a fun way to explore color mixing!
25- Rainbows and Exploring Prisms – This week we’re focusing on rainbow science for kids by exploring prisms. Prisms can provide such a fun, hands-on way for kids to observe and hypothesize about light. Here’s some fun ways to use prisms with preschoolers, kindergarteners, and elementary students.
26- Snowball Crafts!
27- Weather Dr. Seuss Style
28- Tornado in a Bottle Science Experiment – Upcycle items from around the house for this easy tornado in a bottle science experiment!
29- Water cycle project with legos – Explore science with this water cycle project created with LEGOs ® ! I love taking a not-so-easy-to-explain topic like The Water Cycle and turning it into a hands-on learning activity where you can see your child’s eyes light up as they begin to grasp the concept!
31- 10 Simple Weather Activities that require NO Prep! – Here are some super simple weather activities for kids that you can do at the drop of a hat. All ten activities require little or no prep work at all. I’ve even listed these ideas on a free printable PDF found at the end of this post. Print it out and keep it nearby for when the mood strikes!
32- Bubble Wrap Rain Cloud –
33- Painting with Nature
34- Build a Rain Gauge
35- Sprout House Science project
We have lots more STEAM Activities HERE.
We are a husband and wife team, pairing our strengths together to teach our preschooler in the most fun and engaging way we possibly can. The mister is a high school educator at Northlake Christian school in Covington Louisiana and over the Innovation Center, which is all things STEAM. I am a SAHM that blogs pretty much everything we do in our little paradise, from what we eat, to where we travel to how we teach our little one. We hope you are inspired to incorporate STEAM into learning with your children.
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Weather Preschool Theme Activities and Lesson Plan Ideas
You can use a Weather Preschool Theme to teach your early learners all kinds of important skills! Teaching preschoolers about the weather and discussing your local climate is a great way to introduce early learners to important science concepts. Weather is a great place to start because it provides lots of tangible opportunities for preschoolers to experience important scientific concepts through hands on learning activities.
Weather Preschool Theme
Check out some of our favorite weather theme activities and printables below. Plus, get some great lesson plans and book suggestions for a fun weather theme your preschoolers will love this Spring. Climate affects our lives every day, kids can see and feel the weather. No matter what time of year it is a weather theme
How to Teach Weather to Preschoolers
Use your everyday weather to prompt activities and interest with your preschoolers. You can use a weather chart, create a weather station near a window, and draw pictures describing the weather. Ask questions, focus on the seasons, and having the children share if it is sunny, cloudy, raining, or snowing.
Share and talk about the clothes and equipment you use on different weather days. Umbrellas, shorts, winter boots, rain jackets…
Check out the fun lessons and activities below on clouds, snow, rain, tornado’s, rainbows, and more.
Cloud Lessons for Preschoolers
Spending a spring afternoon watching the clouds is a great way for preschoolers to begin learning about the weather while using their imagination. Ask your early learners to point out the shapes and characters they see in the clouds. Then, see who can identify the different types of clouds.
There are 4 different types of clouds and they all bring different kinds of weather with them. Teaching your preschoolers to notice the clouds is a good way to begin a preschool weather theme.
Try some of our favorite cloud lessons and activities with your preschoolers to learn more:
- Cloud Activities for Kindergarten
- Recycled Crayon Rain Cloud Craft
- Rain Cloud in a Jar Experiment
Then enjoy these magic filled cloud storybooks for even more fun and imagination inspired by the weather with your preschoolers this Spring:
- Little Cloud by Eric Carle
- The Cloud Book by Tomie de Paola
- The Cloud Spinner by Michael Catchpool
- Clouds by Anne Rockwell
Weather Science Activities for Preschoolers
Rainbow Lessons for Preschoolers
Remember the first time you saw a rainbow? Spotting a rainbow is really exciting because it doesn’t happen every day. A weather preschool theme wouldn’t be complete without learning about rainbows and what causes them. Plus, it’s a great introduction to lessons about climate for preschoolers.
Begin with these fun activities and printables:
- 25 Rainbow Activities for Kids
- 45 Rainbow Crafts and Activities
- Edible Rainbow Weather Putty
- Fizzing Rainbow Science
- Preschool Rainbow Engineering STEM
Learning about rainbows with preschoolers is also a fun way to practice colors and explore color mixing. Plus, it’s the perfect time to introduce lessons about the water cycle.
Try these activities for learning about the water cycle with preschoolers:
- Water Cycle Theme and Lessons
- Printable Water Theme Activities
- Rainforest Terrarium: Water Cycle in Action
Want more great read alouds to share with your preschool learners? Check out these 10 Books About Rainbows for Preschoolers .
Winter Weather Lessons for Preschool
Weather preschool theme lessons and activities are fun in every season, but our favorite form of precipitation is definitely snow! Learning about the weather during Winter months gives you lots of opportunities to learn all about snow, icicles, frost, blizzards, and snowflakes with your preschoolers.
Check out some favorite lessons and activities for winter weather:
- Edible Snow Playdough
- Montessori Snowflake Matching
- Winter Observation Printable
- Crystal Snowflake Ornaments
- Snowflake Art
Why wait for Winter to learn all about snow? You can do these fun activities any time with this 2 Ingredient Snow Dough Recipe that’s perfect for sensory exploration with early learners and weather preschool lessons too.
Then, try our favorite books about snow:
- The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
- Katy and the Big Snow Plow by Virginia Lee Burton
- The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter’s Wonder by Jon Nelson and Mark Cassino
Exploring Weather in Nature
Spending time outdoors, exploring nature with preschoolers is my favorite way to learn about the weather. Getting out in nature gives preschool learners an opportunity to record the local weather, make observations about the weather and its effects.
- Is the ground wet?
- Do you feel cold?
- Can you find any puddles?
- Do you see ice?
- Is the air warm?
Talking about what you can see, hear, and feel with preschoolers outdoors is a great way to help them begin to notice the weather around them and make observations. Preschoolers can record their own observations in nature journals.
For even more fun, try a nature scavenger hunt or photo challenge with your preschoolers during your weather preschool theme lessons.
Here are a few to get you started:
- Free Nature Scavenger Hunt for Kids
- Fun Ways to Incorporate Nature Studies
- Color Scavenger Hunt
- Perfect Beach Scavenger Hunt
- Winter Photo Challenge
- Spring Nature Table
- Summer Nature Table
Nature studies are also a great way to help your preschoolers learn about the weather in different seasons. In this way, kids can experience lots of different types of weather and learn more about their own local climate in a hands-on way that’s engaging and fun for your preschoolers.
Check out an easy and gorgeous winter sensory bin , or try a more nature inspired winter sensory bin here.
Completing photo challenges with kids while you’re out exploring nature or giving them a small bag to collect natural “treasures” in can help kids to be more observant. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to extend the lesson by teaching about all the things they’re noticing outside.
Fallen leaves could spark a lesson about wind, mushrooms or muddy puddles could ignite curiosity about rain. You just never know!
Weather Lesson Plans and Activities
For those days when you can’t get outdoors, try a nature table near the window. Setting up nature tables with hands-on elements, sensory experiences , nature sounds, and books is a fantastic way to help kids explore nature even when you’re stuck inside. Plus, it can be a really fun way to learn about habitats that aren’t nearby.
You can set up nature tables to explore the weather too.
There’s lots of fun to be had with a nature table all about clouds, rainbows https://www.naturalbeachliving.com/rainbow-slime/ , or wind. The possibilities are endless!
Preschool Books about Weather
Here are some really great books to share with your kids all about the different weather we see throughout the year while you’re out exploring nature together:
- The Berenstain Bears’ Big Book of Science and Nature by Jan and Stan Berenstain
- The Year At Maple Hill Farm by Alice and Martin Provensen
- Nature Anatomy: The Curious Parts and Pieces of the Natural World by Julia Rothman
Weather Activities for Kids
How will you explore the weather with your preschoolers this year? I hope I’ve given you some great ideas and resources to use with your weather preschool theme at home or in the classroom.
Aren’t these weather activities for preschool and kindergarten fun and exciting?! We still continue to do some of them in elementary and beyond.
Share your favorite weather themed activities and books in the comments. I can’t wait to try some of your favorites with my kids too!
Tornado Experiment – Fun Weather Science
Weather Movement Activities for Preschoolers
- Grades 6-12
- School Leaders
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30+ Activities for Teaching Weather Including Tornadoes, Lightning, and Rainbows!
Science is in the air!
Spring is the perfect season to study the weather and get your students outdoors for hands-on activities. From reading and writing about the weather to conducting experiments and more, here’s our list of weather activities for the classroom, perfect for preschool through middle school.
1. Read books about weather
Read-alouds are some of the most simple classroom activities that teach kids about weather. Get your students amped up about studying the weather with a flood of books. Read a few aloud, feature them in your classroom library, and let students study them with partners.
Learn more: 22 Awesome Weather Books for Kids
2. Start a weather journal
What you need: Construction paper, scissors, glue, preprinted labels, crayons, recording pages
What to do: Have students fold a large piece of construction paper in half to make a book cover. Staple a stack of recording pages ( see samples ) into the middle. Use scissors to cut out clouds, the sun, and raindrops, and glue them onto the cover. Draw in snow and fog. Glue labels as illustrated onto the cover. Then allow students a few minutes each day to journal the weather outside.
Learn more: The Curriculum Corner
3. Learn weather vocabulary words
Give your students the words to describe all kinds of weather with these free printable cards. With words like sunny, cloudy, and stormy, as well as blizzard, flood, hurricane, the four seasons, and others, they can be used for many activities, such as helping students fill in their weather journals.
Learn more: PreKinders
4. Make it rain
What you need: Clear plastic cup or glass jar, shaving cream, food coloring
What to do: Fill the cup with water. Squirt shaving cream on top for the clouds. Explain that when clouds get really heavy with water, it rains! Then put blue food coloring on top of the cloud and watch it “rain.”
Learn more: The Happy Housewife
5. Create your own miniature water cycle
What you need: Ziplock bag, water, blue food coloring, Sharpie pen, tape
What to do: Weather activities like this one take a little bit of patience, but they’re worth the wait. Pour one-quarter cup of water and a few drops of blue food coloring into a ziplock bag. Seal tightly and tape the bag to a (preferably south-facing) wall. As the water warms in the sunlight, it will evaporate into vapor. As the vapor cools, it will begin changing into liquid (condensation) just like a cloud. When the water condenses enough, the air will not be able to hold it and the water will fall down in the form of precipitation.
Learn more: Playdough to Plato
6. Use ice and heat to make rain
What you need: Glass jar, plate, water, ice cubes
What to do: Heat water until it is steaming, then pour it into the jar until it is about one-third full. Place a plate full of ice cubes on top of the jar. Watch as condensation builds and water begins to stream down the sides of the jar.
Learn more: I Can Teach My Child
7. Watch the fog roll in
What you need: Glass jar, small strainer, water, ice cubes
What to do: Fill the jar completely with hot water for about a minute. Pour out almost all the water, leaving about 1 inch in the jar. Place the strainer over the top of the jar. Drop three or four ice cubes into the strainer. As the cold air from the ice cubes collides with the warm, moist air in the bottle, the water will condense and fog will form. This is one of those weather activities that will inspire plenty of oohs and aahs!
Learn more: Weather Wiz Kids/Fog Experiments
8. Make a cloud poster
What you need: 1 large piece of construction paper or small poster board, cotton balls, glue, marker
What to do: Using the information guide included at the link, create different types of clouds by manipulating the cotton balls. Then glue them to the poster and label them.
Learn more: Science Spot
9. Crack a few weather jokes
Want to incorporate a little humor into your weather activities? Try some weather-themed jokes! Why is the sun so smart? Because it has more than 5,000 degrees! Bring a little weather humor into your classroom with this collection of jokes and riddles.
Learn more: Listcaboodle
10. Reflect a rainbow
What you need: Glass of water, sheet of white paper, sunlight
What to do: Fill the glass all the way to the top with water. Put the glass of water on a table so that it is half on the table and half off the table (make sure that the glass doesn’t fall!). Then, make sure that the sun can shine through the glass of water. Next, place the white sheet of paper on the floor. Adjust the piece of paper and the glass of water until a rainbow forms on the paper.
How does this happen? Explain to students that light is made up of many colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. When light passes through the water, it is broken up into all of the colors seen in a rainbow!
Learn more: Rookie Parenting
11. Predict rain using pine cones
What you need: Pine cones and a journal
What to do: Make a pine-cone weather station! Observe the pine cones and the weather daily. Note that when the weather is dry, the pine cones stay open. When it’s about to rain, the pine cones close! This is a great way to talk about weather prediction with students. Pine cones actually open and close based on the humidity to help seed dispersal.
Learn more: Science Sparks
12. Create your own lightning
What you need: Aluminum pie tin, wool sock, Styrofoam block, pencil with eraser, thumbtack
What to do: Push the thumbtack through the center of the pie tin from the bottom. Push the eraser end of the pencil onto the thumbtack. Place the tin to the side. Put the Styrofoam block on a table. Quickly rub the block with the wool sock for a couple of minutes. Pick up the aluminum pie pan, using the pencil as a handle, and place it on top of the Styrofoam block. Touch the aluminum pie pan with your finger—you should feel a shock! If you don’t feel anything, try rubbing the Styrofoam block again. Once you feel the shock, try turning the lights out before you touch the pan again. You should see a spark, like lightning!
What is happening? Static electricity. Lightning happens when the negative charges (electrons) in the bottom of the cloud (or in this experiment, your finger) are attracted to the positive charges (protons) in the ground (or in this experiment, the aluminum pie pan). The resulting spark is like a mini lightning bolt.
Learn more: UCAR
13. Learn 10 interesting things about air
Even though air is all around us, we can’t see it. So what is air, exactly? Learn 10 fascinating facts that explain the makeup of air and why it is so important for every living thing.
Learn more: Climate Kids
14. Conjure up lightning in your mouth
What you need: A mirror, a dark room, wintergreen Life Savers
What to do: Turn off the lights and have students wait until their eyes have adjusted to the dark. Bite down on a wintergreen candy while looking in the mirror. Chew with your mouth open and you’ll see that the candy sparks and glitters. What’s happening? You are actually making light with friction: triboluminescence. As you crush the candy, the stress creates electric fields, like electricity in a lightning storm. When the molecules recombine with their electrons, they emit light. Why wintergreen candy? It converts ultraviolet light into visible blue light, which makes the “lightning” brighter to see. If students aren’t seeing it in their own mouths, have them watch the video above.
Learn more: Exploratorium
15. Track a thunderstorm
What you need: Thunder, stopwatch, journal
What to do: Wait for a lightning flash and then start the stopwatch immediately. Stop when you hear the sound of thunder. Have students write down their numbers. For every five seconds, the storm is one mile away. Divide their number by five to see how many miles away the lightning is! The light traveled faster than sound, which is why it took longer to hear the thunder.
Learn more: Weather Wiz Kids/Track a Thunderstorm
16. Make a thunderstorm front
What you need: Clear plastic container (size of a shoebox), red food coloring, ice cubes made with water and blue food coloring
What to do: Fill the plastic container two-thirds full with lukewarm water. Let the water sit for a minute to come to air temperature. Place a blue ice cube into the container. Drop three drops of red food coloring into the water at the opposite end of the container. Watch what happens! Here’s the explanation: The blue cold water (representing a cold air mass) sinks, while the red warm water (representing the warm, unstable air mass) rises. This is called convection and the warm air is forced to rise by the approaching cold front, and the thunderstorm forms.
Learn more: Earth Science Week
17. Learn the difference between weather and climate
Share this interesting video with your students to learn the difference between what we call weather and the climate.
18. Swirl up a tornado
What you need: Two 2-liter clear plastic bottles (empty and clean), water, food coloring, glitter, duct tape
What you do: Students always love classic weather activities like this one. First, fill one of the bottles two-thirds full of water. Add food coloring and a dash of glitter. Use duct tape to fasten the two containers together. Be sure to tape tightly so that no water leaks out when you turn the bottles over. Flip the bottles so that the bottle with the water is on top. Swirl the bottle in a circular motion. This will create a vortex and a tornado will form in the top bottle as the water rushes into the bottom bottle.
Learn more: Discovery Express
19. Make a warm and cold front model
What you need: Two drinking glasses, red and blue food coloring, glass bowl, cardboard
What to do: Fill one glass with chilled water and a couple of drops of blue food coloring. Fill the other with hot water and red food coloring. Cut a piece of cardboard so that it fits snugly into the glass bowl, separating it into two sections. Pour the hot water into one half of the bowl and cold water into the other half. Quickly and carefully pull the cardboard separator out. The water will swirl and settle with the cold water on bottom, the hot water on top, and a purple zone where they mixed in the middle!
Learn more: Preschool Powol Packets
20. Do a Blue Sky experiment
Videos are easy to incorporate into your classroom weather activities. This one answers burning questions about weather. Why does our sky look blue? Why does the sun appear to be yellow even though it is a white star? Find out the answer to these questions and more with this informative video.
Learn more: The Action Lab
21. Grow a snowflake
What you need: String, wide-mouthed jar, white pipe cleaners, blue food coloring, boiling water, borax, a pencil
What to do: Cut a white pipe cleaner into thirds. Twist the three sections together in the center so that you now have a shape that looks something like a six-sided star. Make sure the lengths of the star are equal by trimming them to the same length. Tie the flake to the pencil with string. Carefully fill the jar with boiling water (adult job). For each cup of water, add three tablespoons of borax, adding one tablespoon at a time. Stir until the mixture is dissolved, but don’t worry if some of the borax settles at the base of the jar. Add food coloring. Hang the snowflake in the jar. Let sit overnight; remove.
Learn more: Martha Stewart
22. Make magic snowballs
What you need: Frozen baking soda, cold water, vinegar, squirt bottles
What to do: Start by mixing two parts baking soda with one part water to make fluffy, moldable snowballs. Then, pour vinegar into squirt bottles and let kids squirt their snowballs. The reaction between the baking soda and vinegar will cause the snowballs to fizz and bubble. For a snow avalanche, pour vinegar into a tub, then drop a snowball in!
Learn more: Growing a Jeweled Rose
23. Catch the wind
What you need: Paper cut into 6″ x 6″ squares, wood skewers, glue gun, small beads, sewing pins, a thumbtack, needle-nose pliers, scissors
What to do: Make a paper pinwheel! Follow the easy, step-by-step directions in the link below for these colorful and fun weather activities.
Learn more: One Little Project
24. Observe the intensity of the wind
What you need: One large blue recycle bag, one empty plastic container such as a yogurt or sour cream tub, clear packing tape, string or yarn, ribbons or streamers to decorate
What to do: Make a wind sock. Start by cutting the rim off the plastic tub. Wrap the edge of the bag around the rim and secure it with tape. Using a hole punch, make a hole in the bag just below the plastic ring. If you don’t have a hole punch, you can use a pencil. Tie a string through the hole and attach to a post or high railing.
Learn more: The Chaos and the Clutter
25. Determine the direction of the wind
What you need: Paper cup, pencil, straw, pin, paper plate, construction paper scraps
What to do: You’ll be creating a wind vane to detect the direction of the wind! Poke a sharpened pencil through the bottom of a paper cup. Insert a pin through the middle of a drinking straw and into the eraser of the pencil. Make a cut approximately one inch deep on each end of the straw, making sure to go through both sides of the straw. Cut small squares or triangles of construction paper and slip one into each end of the straw. Place your wind vane onto a paper plate or piece of paper with the directions marked.
Learn more: Education.com/Wind Vane
26. Measure wind speed
What you need: Five 3-oz. paper cups, 2 drinking straws, pin, paper punch, scissors, stapler, sharp pencil with eraser
What to do: Take one paper cup (which will be the center of your anemometer) and use a paper punch to punch four equally spaced holes about half an inch below the rim. Push a sharpened pencil through the bottom of the cup so that the eraser rests in the middle of the cup. Push one drinking straw through the hole in one side of the cup and out the other side. Insert the other straw through the opposite holes so that they form a crisscross inside the cup. Push a pin through the intersection of the straws and into the eraser. For each of the other four cups, punch a hole on opposite sides of the cup about half an inch down.
To assemble: Push one cup onto the end of each straw, making sure that all of the cups are facing the same direction. The anemometer will rotate with the wind. It does not need to be pointed in the wind for use.
Learn more: Weather Wiz Kids
27. Measure rain volume
What you need: One 2-liter bottle, Sharpie, stones, water, scissors, ruler, tape
What to do: Create a rain gauge! Start by cutting away the top third of the 2-liter plastic bottle and put it to the side. Pack a few stones at the bottom of the bottle. Pour water in until just above the stone level. Draw a scale on a piece of masking tape with the help of the ruler and paste it on the side of the bottle so you can start counting just above the current water line. Invert the top of the bottle and place it into the bottom half to act as a funnel. Leave the bottle outside to capture rain.
Learn more: News24
28. Create art with the power of the sun
What you need: Photo-sensitive paper, various objects such as leaves, sticks, paper clips, etc.
What to do: Make sun prints! Place the paper, bright-blue side up, in a shallow tub. Place objects you wish to “print” on the paper and leave it in the sun for 2 to 4 minutes. Remove the objects from the paper and the paper from the tub. Soak the paper in water for 1 minute. As the paper dries, the image will sharpen.
Learn more: Mud and Bloom
29. Measure atmospheric pressure
What you need: A dry, empty frozen-juice can or coffee can with lid removed, latex balloon, rubber band, tape, 2 drinking straws, card stock
What to do: This barometer starts by cutting off the stiff band of the balloon. Stretch the balloon over the top of the juice can. Secure a rubber band around the balloon to hold it securely. Tape the end of the drinking straw to the center of the balloon surface, making sure it hangs off to one side. Fold the card stock in half vertically and make hash marks every quarter inch. Set the barometer right next to the measurement card. As the external air pressure changes, it will cause the balloon to bend inward or outward at the center. The tip of the straw will move up or down accordingly. Take pressure readings five or six times a day.
Learn more: All Science Fair Projects
30. Make a DIY thermometer
What you need: Clear plastic bottle, water, rubbing alcohol, clear plastic drinking straw, modeling clay, food coloring
What to do: Fill the bottle about one-quarter full with equal parts water and rubbing alcohol. Add a few drops of food coloring. Put the straw inside the bottle without letting it touch the bottom. Seal the neck of the bottle with the modeling clay to keep the straw in place. Hold your hands on the bottom of the bottle and watch the mixture move up through the straw. Why? It expands when warm!
Learn more: Education.com/Homemade Thermometer
31. Demonstrate a fire tornado
What you need: A lazy Susan, wire screen mesh, small glass dish, sponge, lighter fluid, lighter
What to do: Weather activities like this one are for teacher demonstrations only! Make a cylinder about 2.5 feet tall from the wire screen mesh and set it aside. Place the glass dish in the center of the lazy Susan. Cut the sponge into strips and place in bowl. Soak the sponge with lighter fluid. Light the fire and rotate the lazy Susan. The fire will spin, but a tornado will not be seen. Now, place the wire screen cylinder on the lazy Susan, creating a perimeter around the fire. Give it a spin and watch the tornado dance.
Learn more: Steve Spangler Science
If you liked these weather activities, check out 70 Easy Science Experiments Using Materials You Already Have On Hand .
And for more great hands-on activity ideas, be sure to sign up for our newsletters .
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20 Rain Crafts and Activities
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If you enjoy a good spring rain, you’ll love these rain crafts and activities. They’re perfect for keeping tots and preschoolers busy on a rainy afternoon!
I love splashing around in a light spring shower, but sometimes it’s just raining too hard to play outside. On those days, pull out your craft supplies and set your little ones up to make a fun rain-themed craft.
Whether you’re looking to paint a rainy picture or make a model of a rain cloud , you’re sure to find a fun idea below.
Making It Rain: Rain Cloud In A Jar
Try this hands-on science experiment which shows kids first hand how they can make it rain indoors. I Can Teach My Child
Drip art: Spring craft with 3D rain drops
Here’s another activity which allows your kids to make it rain indoors. This one results in a fun piece of artwork with 3D rain drops .
DIY Rainy Day Paper Umbrellas
Cupcake liners, chenille stems, and dot markers come together to make colorful rainy day paper umbrellas . My Teen Guide
How to Make a Rain Cloud in a Jar
Making a rain cloud in a jar is a great way to explore weather with your preschoolers and young learners. They’ll see up close how clouds make rain. Homeschool Preschool
Preschool Engineering with Rainbows
Don’t wait for a sunny rainfall, let your little engineers work to build their very own indoor rainbows . Natural Beach Living
20 Rainy Day Activities for Preschoolers
Discover some fun rainy day activities for preschoolers to enjoy. Whether you spend the day indoors or outside in the rain, you’ll find plenty of ways to occupy your kids. Homeschool Preschool
Umbrella paper plate sun catcher craft
Hang this paper plate umbrella suncatcher in the window. It will brighten an otherwise dreary rainy afternoon! The Gingerbread House
Bubble Wrap Crafts – Rainy Cloud
Kids love bubble wrap! There’s something so entertaining about popping those little bubbles. But, before you let them pop the bubbles, use some of it to make a bubble wrap rain cloud . Red Ted Art
Spring Magnet Crafts
Start a discussion with your kids about the difference between sunny days and rainy days. Then, grab some chenille stems and let your kids made some fun spring crafts which include a rain cloud and an umbrella. Easy Crafts for Kids
Rain Cloud Paper Craft with a Paper Plate Sun
I love the sun peeking out from behind this cute paper plate rain cloud craft . Easy Peasy and Fun
Painting Rain with Printable Art Prompt
Print out the free rainy day silhouettes, and your preschoolers will be on their way to creating an amazing work of rainy day art . Adventure in a Box
Toddler Made Rain Catcher and weather blog hop
Have your kids make a wooden spoon weather man and simple rain catcher to observe and record the rainfall throughout the year. Rainy Day Mum
Rainbow Rainy Day Art STEAM Project for Kids
Show your kids how easy it can be to let the rain paint them a beautiful picture! They’ll love hanging their rainbow rainy day art on the wall after it dries. Rhythms of Play
Clouds and Rain Weather Windsock Craft
Kids can learn about wind and weather with this clouds and rain weather windsock craft . Preschoolers will work on fine motor skills as they create it, and then they’ll enjoy watching blow in the wind. A Dab of Glue Will Do
Weather Activities for Kids: Thunderstorm Art Project
Preschoolers will explore color mixing and 3D art when they create their own thunderstorm art project . Buggy and Buddy
Now it’s your turn! Tell me in the comment section which rain craft you and your preschoolers will try first.
MORE FREE Rainy Day PRESCHOOL FUN
They say that April showers bring May flowers. Little ones will can focus on early math and literacy when you add these Rainy Day-themed spring preschool printables to your lessons.
Spring showers bring new life to the world around us. Pique your preschooler’s interest with this collection of books about rain .
Come discover some fun rainy day activities for preschoolers to enjoy. Whether you spend the day indoors or outside in the rain, we’ve got you covered.
ENHANCE YOUR rainy day LESSON PLANS
Looking for more fun items to help you teach your kids about rain? These are my top picks from Amazon! Working on preschool skills is easy to do all year long.
These resources will help enhance the rainy day activities you have planned for your preschoolers.
BOOKS ABOUT rain
• Learning About Rain by Catherine Mangieri
• Rain by Marion Dane Bauer
• Worm Weather by Jean Taft
• PlanToys Weather Dress-Up – This colorful puzzle encourages kids to learn how to dress for different weather
• Bigjigs Toys Weather Balancing Game – Includes 6 weather symbols: rainbow, Cloud, snowflake, raindrop, sun & Thunder.
Summer Beach Crafts
Crafts with Leaves and Sticks
Handprint Mothers Day Craft
Blow Painted Ghosts Preschool Halloween Craft
Teach Preschool Numbers and Counting with Straws
15 Simple Leprechaun Crafts for Kids
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Parenting & Family Articles & More
Why reading is important for children’s brain development, children living in poverty show poorer brain development. but reading for pleasure may help counteract this..
Early childhood is a critical period for brain development , which is important for boosting cognition and mental well-being. Good brain health at this age is directly linked to better mental heath, cognition, and educational attainment in adolescence and adulthood. It can also provide resilience in times of stress.
But, sadly, brain development can be hampered by poverty. Studies have shown that early childhood poverty is a risk factor for lower educational attainment. It is also associated with differences in brain structure, poorer cognition, behavioral problems, and mental health symptoms.
This shows just how important it is to give all children an equal chance in life. But until sufficient measures are taken to reduce inequality and improve outcomes, our new study, published in Psychological Medicine , shows one low-cost activity that may at least counteract some of the negative effects of poverty on the brain: reading for pleasure.
Wealth and brain health
Higher family income in childhood tends to be associated with higher scores on assessments of language, working memory, and the processing of social and emotional cues. Research has shown that the brain’s outer layer, called the cortex, has a larger surface area and is thicker in people with higher socioeconomic status than in poorer people.
Being wealthy has also been linked with having more grey matter (tissue in the outer layers of the brain) in the frontal and temporal regions (situated just behind the ears) of the brain. And we know that these areas support the development of cognitive skills.
The association between wealth and cognition is greatest in the most economically disadvantaged families . Among children from lower-income families, small differences in income are associated with relatively large differences in surface area. Among children from higher-income families, similar income increments are associated with smaller differences in surface area.
Importantly, the results from one study found that when mothers with low socioeconomic status were given monthly cash gifts, their children’s brain health improved . On average, they developed more changeable brains (plasticity) and better adaptation to their environment. They also found it easier to subsequently develop cognitive skills.
Our socioeconomic status will even influence our decision making . A report from the London School of Economics found that poverty seems to shift people’s focus toward meeting immediate needs and threats. They become more focused on the present with little space for future plans—and also tended to be more averse to taking risks.
It also showed that children from low-socioeconomic-background families seem to have poorer stress coping mechanisms and feel less self-confident.
But what are the reasons for these effects of poverty on the brain and academic achievement? Ultimately, more research is needed to fully understand why poverty affects the brain in this way. There are many contributing factors that will interact. These include poor nutrition and stress on the family caused by financial problems. A lack of safe spaces and good facilities to play and exercise in, as well as limited access to computers and other educational support systems, could also play a role.
Reading for pleasure
There has been much interest of late in leveling up. So what measures can we put in place to counteract the negative effects of poverty that could be applicable globally?
Our observational study shows a dramatic and positive link between a fun and simple activity—reading for pleasure in early childhood—and better cognition, mental health, and educational attainment in adolescence.
We analyzed the data from the Adolescent Brain and Cognitive Development (ABCD) project, a U.S. national cohort study with more than 10,000 participants across different ethnicities and and varying socioeconomic status. The dataset contained measures of young adolescents ages nine to 13 and how many years they had spent reading for pleasure during their early childhood. It also included data on their cognitive health, mental health, and brain health.
About half of the group of adolescents started reading early in childhood, whereas the others, approximately half, had never read in early childhood, or had begun reading later on.
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We discovered that reading for pleasure in early childhood was linked with better scores on comprehensive cognition assessments and better educational attainment in young adolescence. It was also associated with fewer mental health problems and less time spent on electronic devices.
Our results showed that reading for pleasure in early childhood can be beneficial regardless of socioeconomic status. It may also be helpful regardless of the children’s initial intelligence level. That’s because the effect didn’t depend on how many years of education the children’s parents had had—which is our best measure for very young children’s intelligence (IQ is partially heritable).
We also discovered that children who read for pleasure had larger cortical surface areas in several brain regions that are significantly related to cognition and mental health (including the frontal areas). Importantly, this was the case regardless of socioeconomic status. The result therefore suggests that reading for pleasure in early childhood may be an effective intervention to counteract the negative effects of poverty on the brain.
While our current data was obtained from families across the United States, future analyses will include investigations with data from other countries—including developing countries, when comparable data become available.
So how could reading boost cognition exactly? It is already known that language learning, including through reading and discussing books, is a key factor in healthy brain development. It is also a critical building block for other forms of cognition, including executive functions (such as memory, planning, and self-control) and social intelligence.
Because there are many different reasons why poverty may negatively affect brain development, we need a comprehensive and holistic approach to improving outcomes. While reading for pleasure is unlikely, on its own, to fully address the challenging effects of poverty on the brain, it provides a simple method for improving children’s development and attainment.
Our findings also have important implications for parents, educators, and policymakers in facilitating reading for pleasure in young children. It could, for example, help counteract some of the negative effects on young children’s cognitive development of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns.
This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article .
About the Authors
Barbara Jacquelyn Sahakian
Barbara Jacquelyn Sahakian, Ph.D. , is a professor of clinical neuropsychology at the University of Cambridge.
Christelle Langley, Ph.D. , is a postdoctoral research associate in cognitive neuroscience at the University of Cambridge.
Jianfeng Feng, Ph.D. , is a professor of science and technology for brain-inspired intelligence/computer science at Fudan University.
Yun-Jun Sun, Ph.D. , is a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute of Science and Technology for Brain-Inspired Intelligence at Fudan University.
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Home » Weather » Weather Blog » NBC2’s Rob Duns hosts Weather for Kids event Saturday in Bonita Springs
NBC2’s Rob Duns hosts Weather for Kids event Saturday in Bonita Springs
BONITA SPRINGS, Fla. — NBC2 First Alert Meteorologist Rob Duns will be at the Bonita Springs Public Library this Saturday, Nov. 18, for our latest Weather for Kids event!
Geared toward kids between Kindergarten and 6th grade, Rob will teach your family about tools and instruments used in weather forecasting, how hurricanes form, how tornadoes develop, and more!
The event starts at 2 p.m. and should wrap up by 3 p.m.
Bonita Springs Public Library is located at 10560 Reynolds Street near Riverside Park. From Interstate 75, take Bonita Beach Road east to Old 41 north. See it on a map here .
The event is free, and pre-registration is not required.
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What's on the list of games and toys for 2023
By amy pollick, wealthofgeeks.com via associated press | posted - nov. 20, 2023 at 12:34 p.m., the sears & roebuck wish book may have gone the way of the dodo bird, but children still make christmas lists with games and toys at the top. according to a research and markets study, the worldwide games and toys market is worth $342 billion. (associated press).
Estimated read time: 4-5 minutes
WASHINGTON — The Sears & Roebuck Wish Book may have gone the way of the dodo bird, but children still make Christmas lists with games and toys at the top. According to a Research and Markets study, the worldwide games and toys market is worth $342 billion.
The study reports the games and toys market is driven by an emerging middle class in populated areas and the continued growth of legacy brands, among other factors.
Top of the wish lists
If kids still want toys, what items are most popular? Statista reports the U.S. toy market is seeing a resurgence in traditional toys, like dolls, board games, puzzles and construction sets.
The "Barbie" movie topped $1 billion at the box office, so it follows that Mattel's flagship toy is popular this year. Emma Stessman and Bella Druckman with "The TODAY Show" interviewed Laurie Schacht, chief toy officer at The Toy Insider. She shared that "Barbie: The Movie" collectible doll, "Barbie: The Movie" Ken doll, the Barbie Dreamhouse 2023, Barbie Fashionistas dolls, and the remote-control Hot Wheels Barbie Corvette are some of the most popular toys of 2023.
Arts and crafts toys are making a comeback, too, according to Schacht. The Make it Real Mini Pottery Studio and Cra-Z-Art The Real Cotton Candy Maker are also a hit with youngsters this year.
Other retailers have released their most popular toys for 2023. Kohl's department store list includes the L.O.L. Surprise Magic Flyers and the Melissa & Doug Stack, Sort & Pound Wooden Toy Collection. The list at Macy's includes a revamped Tamagotchi Uni. Sesame Street's Elmo is still popular and appears as the Elmo Slide Plush.
Amazon reports the Clue Conspiracy Board Game is a popular choice, while Walmart offers the Nerf Elite Junior Flyer.
STEM/STEAM toys are popular, too, including the Educational Insights GeoSafari Jr. Kidnoculars and the Melissa & Doug Super Smile Dentist Kit.
Toys parents like
No matter what toys the kiddos want, mom and dad have the final say on what goes under the tree or in a birthday gift.
Monica Fish, founder of Planner At Heart, says, "Despite my kids' 5-year age difference, they both have LEGOs on their holiday wish list. It is a toy that encourages creative, imaginative play, problem solving, and introduces engineering concepts. But they just think it's an exciting gift from their favorite Disney or video game franchises. Even though LEGOs tend to be a high-priced item, it's one that always makes it under the tree."
For youngsters whose preferences are a little harder to nail down, parents have to watch what the kids are playing with for a better idea of what to buy.
Sarah Gilliand is a travel editor and mom of three kids who owns the On The Road With Sarah travel blog. She's on board with being an observant parent where holiday gifts are concerned.
"The 4-year-old always wants everything he sees: in stores, on TV, you name it," she says. "We usually can't ask him what he wants because it's always a huge list, but we know what he plays with the most. He loves building things, and he recently received a marble run set for his birthday, so we will probably get him more attachments for that. He also loves LEGO blocks and magnetic tiles for building."
"Pretend play has also ramped up for him," she continues, "and he enjoys being a chef or a doctor, so we will mostly likely add to his accessories for those costumes. Dinosaurs and MatchBox cars are also always welcome. We love the brands Melissa & Doug, VTech and LEGO."
Sometimes, gifts for youngsters are an easy pick. Gilliland explains, "My tweens want gift cards, money or accessories for their phones."
Parents also have opinions on gifts they're not sure about.
JayDee Vykoukal, owner of Mom Blog Life, expressed her concerns. "My 5-year-old has two consistent requests this year so far. A tablet, because her other friends have one, and a Llama squishmallow. The squishmallow is an easy win," she explains, "but I'm hesitant to get my child an electronic (device) at such a young age. I've been looking into kid-friendly tablets with educational apps, parental control and time limits. We'll see as it gets closer to Christmas."
What the experts like
Child development experts have their own thoughts about toys and games for children.
The editors at New York Magazine's The Strategist spoke with Dr. Roberta Golinkoff, a professor of child psychology at the University of Delaware. She said, "The best toys allow growing kids to engage in imaginative play, practice communication, and develop fine motor skills."
Experts on the Early Learning Centre website recommend toys that stimulate children's touch and motor skills, particularly for toddlers. Older children like toys that allow them to practice their communication skills, like toy phones that also encourage their auditory skills.
Kids love physical activity toys, too, and child development experts recommend them to encourage children to move and exercise. Bubble machines and mini ball pits are popular toys to help get kids moving.
Experts also recommend kids use crayons, finger paints, modeling clay and other art supplies to express their creativity and to develop fine motor skills and color recognition.
This article was produced by Media Decision and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.
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The best games that are fun for the whole family
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There are so many great games out there. Too many , some (us) might argue (looking at our backlog). But games a whole family can enjoy together? Those are far and few, especially as gaming moves more and more online and away from couch experiences.
For that reason, we gathered Polygon’s sharpest minds to find the best games your family can play together. Some are party games, some are co-op adventures, some are games you take turns playing — the only rules are they must be family-friendly, accessible to gamers with different backgrounds and experience levels, and above all else, fun.
So no matter what kind of game you’re looking to play together as a family this holiday season, we’ve got you covered.
Where to play: Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X
If you’re looking for an open arena where the whole family can brawl, try Party Animals . Four players can play splitscreen locally (or eight together online) and inhabit very wobbly animals — think Fall Guys -style characters — that push, shove, and throw their way to victory. Younger kids will have an easier time with the brawling modes, where you can have fun button-mashing. The objective-based minigames, like a team-based soccer event, require a little more coordination, but will be a chaotic blast for older kids and adults alike. —Nicole Carpenter
Super Mario Bros. Wonder
Where to play: Nintendo Switch
Nintendo’s new platformer, Super Marios Bros. Wonder , is a great family game that caters to seasoned Mario veterans and newcomers. There are eight playable characters to choose from in both online and local multiplayer that goes up to four players; you can play with family on your couch or around the world. There’s no splitscreen, which means everyone crowds into a single screen for all of Super Mario Bros. Wonder ’s varied levels. There’s your standard platforming, of course, but Nintendo’s put some delightfully weird spins on it. For beginner players, Nintendo’s added two characters who don’t take damage: Nabbit and Yoshi. They can lose lives if they fall into pits, but the lack of damage-taking makes both characters an option for beginners or young kids. —NC
Where to play: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, Xbox One and Series X
The easiest way to describe PlateUp! is that it’s basically the strategy roguelite version of Overcooked . You start the game with a basic kitchen, where you cook and serve a limited number of dishes to restaurant customers. It gets harder the longer you play, but you make it easier — or potentially harder, with bad planning — by building out your kitchen each round. You also unlock a variety of recipes and outfits to keep your kitchen buzzing. But a warning to families looking to play together: This is the kind of game that can tear your family apart... in the most fun way possible, of course! —NC
Where to play: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, Xbox One and Series X, and your phones!
The Jackbox series of games (individually titled as different “Party Packs”) are reliably fun and zany for groups of people large and small. Only one person needs to own a copy, and the rest can join in via their phone, computer, or other device. The games in the packs vary, but they include variations on trivia games, drawing games, joke games, and plenty more. I particularly recommend Party Pack 9 for the game Quixort , as well as Party Packs 6 and 7 for a variety of fun times, but all of them include entertaining games with something everyone can enjoy. — Pete Volk
Where to play: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC
For a fighting game the whole family can enjoy, try Gang Beasts , a beat-’em-up featuring wacky, wobbly fighters with very soft bones. Players take control of a variety of colorful gelatinous characters, pushing, pulling, and punching each other in creative settings. That includes a lighthouse, rooftop, and on top of moving trucks.
With the exception of being able to throw your friends off tall buildings, into incinerators, or into industrial grinders, Gang Beasts isn’t particularly violent — it’s silly. But if Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is too technically complex for your family or friend group, Gang Beasts ’ body slams and haymakers might be a better fit. —Michael McWhertor
Moving Out and Moving Out 2
Where to play: Windows PC, Xbox One and Series X, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and your phones!
Like Overcooked (or the aforementioned PlateUp! ), Moving Out challenges players to work together as a team to get a specific job done. But instead of cooking and serving delicious dishes, Moving Out takes an activity no one likes — moving house — and makes it delightful, chaotic fun. The physics-based moving simulator has players hauling, arranging, and eventually violently throwing furniture and boxes onto a truck as quickly as possible. And like a household behind on rent, it doesn’t matter what condition you leave your old living space in. Can’t fit your sectional couch through the front door? Throw it through the bay windows! —MM
WarioWare: Move It!
The newest WarioWare offers a fresh batch of hundreds of microgames — games that can be played in seconds-long chunks — that can be enjoyed both cooperatively and competitively. WarioWare: Move It! switches up the microgame formula by having players rapidly posing and moving, frantically trying to figure out what a simple on-screen instruction is actually asking them to do before time runs out. WarioWare: Move It! is highly physical, and every player needs their own set of Joy-Cons to participate. But it can be enjoyed in small chunks, with players jumping in and out — or shouting advice! — for some good clean* family fun.
For less physically demanding WarioWare games, there’s also WarioWare: Get It Together! for Switch and WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$! available through a Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack subscription. —MM
*If nose-picking and farts are offensive to you, then WarioWare’s not gonna be your cup of tea.
Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
Nintendo’s Wii U port is all-ages-tested, all-ages-approved thanks to puzzles that rely more on curiosity and consideration than fast-paced timing. In Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker , players young and old help Captain Toad and Toadette navigate boxy 3D environments littered with platform challenges, hidden items, and stars that help the Toads advance to the next level. True to Mario games, the design is bright and the music is upbeat as you check every nook and cranny of the increasingly challenging puzzles. Younger players should have no problem guiding the Toads without too much stress — you can’t fall off the edge and there’s no ticking clock to make you sweat — but it’ll be helpful to have more seasoned gamers in the room, as even the simplest-looking levels contain labyrinths. Hide-and-seek pixel Toad challenges and some fun tie-ins to Super Mario Odyssey make this one a no-brainer for longtime Mushroom Kingdom denizens and those recently converted by the Mario movie . — Matt Patches
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge and Cowabunga Collection
Where to play: Windows PC, Xbox One and Series X, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, iOs and Android via Netflix for Shredder’s Revenge
Like Pixar movies and chicken nuggets, some products are equally enjoyed by kids and adults alike. And so it is with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge , the 2022 beat-em-up throwback from Tribute Games ( Flinthook ). Just like the arcade game of old, up to four players can team up to sword, staff, nunchuck and otherwise pummel Foot baddies. Kids are into the Turtles again thanks to Mutant Mayhem ’s breakout success, and parents can feel young again (remember 1989?).
And if Shredder’s Revenge isn’t hitting the nostalgia sense hard enough, you can always go straight to the source: The Cowabunga Collection collects a lucky 13 TMNT classics, from the arcade original to that weird NES game. OK, maybe parts of 1989 are better forgotten... — Chris Grant
Where to play: Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and Series X, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, PC
Ubisoft’s dancing game series is quite easy to forget about because it hasn’t really evolved since its debut on Wii in 2009. Whatever the latest version is will offer exactly the same formula of cheery dance routines to a mix of modern and classic pop hits, and itwill judge your performance via motion controls that are honestly rather vague. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t still rule, however. This is choreography as game design, packing huge amounts of wit, personality, and solo or collaborative challenge into its hugely fun, often hilarious routines. Never fails to lift the mood. — Oli Welsh
Children's games, death by ink and a multimillion jackpot: The world of the Squid Game reality TV show
Sky News speaks to two of the producers behind the new super-sized reality TV show which features 456 contestants and a $4.56m prize - all inspired by the popular South Korean drama.
Sky News reporter @niamhielynch
Wednesday 22 November 2023 03:36, UK
Reality TV has undergone plenty of changes in the last decade - from the end of stalwart Noughties shows, the much-needed emphasis on duty of care towards participants, and the genre's pipeline to social media influencing.
Now Squid Game: The Challenge has landed on our screens and turned trusted formats upside down again.
Some 456 contestants from across the globe compete in children's games based on Netflix 's smash-hit South Korean thriller for a $4.56m jackpot (£3.64m) - thought to be the largest single cash prize ever in a television show.
From the start, the show proved controversial after three contestants received medical treatment after the game Red Light, Green Light was filmed in Bedfordshire during a cold snap in January.
Executive producer Tim Harcourt, creative director at Studio Lambert, said the team had taken "all the appropriate measures" before filming.
"Some people anonymously were disgruntled and annoyed that they had spent a lot of time playing that game in the cold and then were eliminated. And that's understandable."
But he says the challenging conditions were to be expected with such a massive jackpot.
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"It is $4.56 million and Netflix is never just going to give that away easily."
And with such a massive prize comes massive responsibility for the producers.
John Hay, chief executive of The Garden production company, said the team was "absolutely scrupulous - doubly so, given the size of the prize, about judging who moved and who hadn't [in the Red Light, Green Light game].
"We had a whole team of adjudicators behind the scenes," he said.
"These were people independent of us from a different company, trained lawyers, who would check those movements and we had those people with us all the way through the entire series."
Hay said the jackpot prize was one of the most significant decisions that Netflix made about the show because "it just flips the whole thing".
"Instead of being driven by the fear of death, it's driven by the sort of scale of this opportunity.
"It turns out that's just as powerful a motor for stories as in the drama. The people who went into that set lived in these six soundstages. The ones who made it to the finals were there for 16 days.
"They were chasing this huge prize. It felt like the stakes felt suitably high. And I think that drove some of the reactions to it in the course of the game," Hay said.
And those reactions were sometimes powerful. The show feels more extreme and more challenging than any recent reality show game. One contestant appeared to be close to vomiting from the pressure of making a decision that would ultimately lead to his elimination.
"We had to accept that that immersion [in the game] would put people under quite a lot of pressure and it could be stressful. And that's something that we would talk about [with contestants]," Harcourt said.
"We really take care as they exit the game to chat to them and allow them to process everything that they felt and to realise that it's all fine now and that was a game and they were playing under pressure.
"Those are conversations that continue with the contributors not just straight after the game, but six months after," Harcourt said, adding that the show's welfare team is in touch with the contestants now as the show is airing.
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Squid Game remains the most popular Netflix series of all time and was streamed by 111 million users in the first 28 days after its release in September 2021.
Hay, whose company The Garden has created shows such as 24 Hours in A&E and Emergency, said Squid Game's success was both a blessing and a burden.
"Starting from a drama as brilliant and as successful as Squid Game is a huge head start in that there's already a huge number of people interested and it's very unusual in being a drama that's based around a game.
"It's an ingeniously designed game. There's a real singularity and originality of the vision in the drama. There's a world [with] a very distinctive sort of tone and visual style.
"But in another sense, it sets the bar unbelievably high. We knew that we had to match the world. We had to play in the spirit of the game."
The number of contestants was also a huge logistical challenge. More than 80,000 people applied to be on the show with Hay saying it was a "mammoth task" to whittle it down to just 456 contestants.
"Of course, without a script, we had to find ways of creating the conditions in which some of those dynamics [of the drama] could play out without being able to actually know who our heroes were from the start and then write their storylines," Hay said.
Harcourt, who has produced other reality shows including The Traitors, The Circle and Naked Attraction, said filming the 456 contestants was "the biggest creative challenge" of the show.
Another challenge was how to eliminate people from the game. In the drama, contestants are immediately killed which led to some creative discussions as to how to adapt it for the reality TV show.
"Quite early on we came upon the idea of the dye pack, which is something that every contestant wore underneath their white t-shirt," Harcourt said.
"We arrived at black ink. There was a taste issue with blood."
"We went through a lot of testing to get the dye colour right, the type of dye right. Even the nozzle that sprays the ink out through their T-shirt had to have such a force that it would actually show on that T-shirt and also that they would actually feel it go off so that everybody knew that they were out of the game."
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So is this new kind of supersized reality TV show with massive stakes the future? Maybe, Harcourt and Hay said.
"I definitely think there will be these big reality shows that broadcasters or streamers will undertake," Harcourt said.
"Unscripted television is still cheaper to make than some dramas and it can call in just as big an audience when it's done brilliantly and it's successful and the audience love it.
"So I don't think we're about to see a spate of 100 of these shows being made. But I think that some of these shows that feel bigger in execution and maybe bigger in concept will become a trend."
Squid Game: The Challenge is on Netflix from today