" We want to teach our children to love science and gain knowledge about our environment and our world.
We want to teach our children to experiment, observe, measure, and predict.
Help them understand the world and ask questions like how and why, then research and experiment to find the answers.
This will improve their thinking skills and open up a world of knowledge.
Here are a few steps to discover and nurture the little scientists in our children Start with water! Emphasize that water is essential for all life.
Ask where does our water come from? Introduce the water cycle: sunshine, evaporation, condensation, precipitation, rain, snow, mountains and ice, rivers and streams, and oceans.
Talk about clouds, go outside and look at the clouds.
Discuss how they look and how they may feel.
Collect rain water, boil it and taste it! Introduce the basic states of matter: solid, liquid, and gas.
Start again with water and an ice cube.
Explain that the ice cube is a solid, melt it and it becomes a liquid, boil it and the steam is a gas.
Walk around the house and identify other solids and liquids like furniture, books, and juice.
Plant a tree or a flower garden! If space doesn't permit, visit a local greenhouse or nursery.
Buy a plant for their room.
Let them take care of it and water it.
Plant a seedling and let them watch it grow.
Observe and document every few days how high it has grown.
Experiment if you place your seedling in the sunshine versus a dark corner.
Introduce how plants eat and live - photosynthesis.
Explore the soil! There is so much life in soil.
Let them play in the dirt looking for worms.
Make an old fashioned mud pie.
Dig for rocks and see what treasures you may find.
Get a magnifying glass and examine the soil, insects, rocks, leaves, everything.
Talk about the importance of nutrition and wellness.
Study the human body, talk about digestion and where our food goes.
Emphasize how healthy food makes our bodies strong.
Discuss vitamins and minerals that our body needs.
If your child gets a cut, scrape or bruise document and watch how it heals.
Make a growth chart and let them see how much their bodies are growing.
Create a food pyramid, draw items that you eat daily to ensure you are receiving the recommended daily doses.
Predict the weather! Look at the sky in the morning and let your child predict what he/she feels the weather will be for the day.
Make a weather calendar with sunshine, clouds, snow, and rain that the child will decorate daily.
With older children, build a sundial.
Discuss the seasons.
Collect leaves in the fall, snow in the winter and flowers in the spring and summer.
Examine them with a magnifying glass or microscope.
Videotape your young meteorologists and scientists! Can you feel my Energy? Talk about how our bodies turn food into energy.
Discuss the sun and wind and how they can be used for energy.
Start your wind energy lesson by flying a kite.
Explain that solar and wind energy can heat your home and provide electricity.
Insects are your friends, collect them, and study them.
See how a caterpillar turns into a butterfly.
Build an ant farm.
Let your child see up close how ants collect their food and build tunnels.
Again bring out that microscope and magnifying glass and explore! Experiment, experiment, experiment! Start with a homemade play dough recipe with salt, water, vegetable oil and flour.
Make it really fun and add some food dye.
Make a volcano experiment with baking soda and vinegar.
Experiment with magnets.
Have fun introducing the five senses with items such as lemons, vinegar, perfume, and cotton balls.
There are so many fun science experiments for kids on the internet and at the library.
Go out of this world! Go on an imaginary tour of the stars and space.
Ask questions like how many stars are in the sky, or if each star is different.
Study a different planet each week and build a solar system together with modeling clay.
Don't be afraid to be hands on and experiment with your children.
Find as many age appropriate science experiments as you can.
Start basic, mix paint colors, let them see purple resulting from your mixture.
We are looking to get them curious, not answer all of their questions.
Get them curious so they will go out and find the answers, gain knowledge and become scientists.
Provide them with as many opportunities of discovery as you can.
Teach them to love science by exploring, experimenting and enjoying science with them!