Monday, January 7, 2013
Discover Nature: Snow
It's here! After a low snow season last year, we're enjoying the large amounts of white, cold, shiny snow outside our doors. While snow is fun to play with, it is also worth a little exploration. Each magical flake is shaped in its own unique design.
Materials: Snow, dark paper, bowls, spoons, etc; optional - magnifying glass, journal and pencils, hot and cold water
This discovery is very simple. Start by putting snow on a dark piece of paper. Look closely at the flakes to see their different shapes. This works best if you do the activity just after a new snowfall before the snow starts to melts or refreezes. If your snow is melting too quickly, you can do the whole activity outside.
After you've looked at the snow, test the properties by scooping, measuring, melting, dumping, transferring and building with the snow. While you can do this outside, it's fun to bring the snow inside on an especially cold day.
We did this discovery on a very cold day, and enjoyed the freedom of exploring the snow without freezing ourselves. There is nothing quite like the mold-able texture of snow for building and melting. We found it quite difficult to see the individual flakes on the paper and will try to look again right after our next snowfall. The entire activity gave the kids a great appreciation for the snow they are spending so much time playing with outside!