Science and Stories – Water Cycle

By Awnali Mills

Today was Science and Stories – Water Cycle.  And I had such fun participating that I didn’t take a single picture.

Not. One.

So you’re going to have to use your imaginations, m’kay?

The books I chose were Raindrops Roll by April Sayers, Stormy Night by Salina Yoon, and Blue on Blue by Diann White.

raindrops-rollStormy NightBlue on Blue

Biscuit brought us our letter “W”, and we talked about all the “W” words (including Welcome!)  Then, Biscuit brought us a rainstick (He loves playing with big sticks!).  After we played with that a bit, we read our first book, Raindrops Roll.  This is such a beautiful book, and so exquisitely photographed.  It’s a great non-fiction book to share for rain/storms/weather storytimes.

Then, we made our own rainstorm.  This is such a simple activity, but always fun.  I ask the kids to do what I’m doing in order to make a rainstorm.  First we rub our hands together, then click our fingers (to sound like drops of rain), then clap our hands, then slap our knees, then stomp our feet.  Finally I have them all stand up, and we all jump at the same time to make a thunderclap, and then we do all of the actions in reverse to make the rain “stop.”  Then, we pulled out our finger spiders and sang “The Itsy Bitsy Spider.”

Next, I did the flannel Five Little Raindrops that I got from Flannel Friday.

Five Little Raindrops

The rhyme goes
One little raindrop in the dark, dark sky
Two little raindrops watch the clouds roll by
Three little raindrops go splat, splat, SPLAT
Four little raindrops, we’ll need boots for that!
Five little raindrops and still no sun?
That’s too much for us, we’d better… RUN!

Counting Down:
Five little raindrops above the forest floor,
One fell away and then there were four.
Four little raindrops hanging from a tree,
One dripped down and then there were three.
Three little raindrops without a thing to do,
One went SPLAT and then there were two.
Two little raindrops waiting on the sun,
One hit the ground and then there was one.
One lonely raindrop was just about done,
He fell down and then there were none.

Our next book was Stormy Night.  I made good use of my flannel board easel with this one, drumming my fingers on it to simulate rain, and smacking it and drumming on it to simulate thunder.  It’s metal, so it’s nice and loud.  This was really effective.

Next, I passed out scarves and we did a modified version of Rain on the Grass from Jbrary.

Rain on the grass (shake on floor),
rain on the trees (shake high),
rain on the roof (hold above head)
but not on me (drop)

Frost on the grass
Frost on the trees
Frost on the roof
but not on me

Snow on the grass
Snow on the trees
Snow on the roof
but not on me

Hail on the grass
Hail in the trees
Hail on the roof
But not on me

Back to the flannel board for It Looked Like Spilt Milk.  Obviously this is a favorite, because the kids kept shouting, “It’s a cloud!”  Then, we all stood up and did Dance Like Snowflakes.

Sung to: “Frere Jacques”
Dance like snowflakes
Dance like snowflakes
In the air
In the air
Whirling, twirling, snowflakes
Whirling, twirling, snowflakes
Here and there
Here and there.

One little girl loved it so much that she kept doing it all through our last book. (Wah-wah.)  Blue on Blue had a hard time being effective because the little girl was dancing and singing in the middle of the floor despite her caregiver’s attempts to keep her quiet and contained.  Oh, well.

So my last activity was a game called “Is It Water?”  I had 10 pictures of things, and they had to tell me if it was water or not.  I had the ocean, steam, rippling desert sand, frost, rain, grass, ice cubes, an iceberg, clouds, and mercury.  The last one even got the grownups.  Mwah-ha-ha!

Our four experimentation stations were:

itsy-bitsy-spider(photo credit Teach Preschool)

  1. The Itsy Bitsy Spider

Put a piece of gutter into a shallow plastic tub with about an 1 ½ of water.  Give them plastic cups and plastic spiders.  Let them sing The Itsy Bitsy Spider and reenact the song.

shaving-cream-water-clouds(photo credit Laughing Kids Learn)

  1. Shaving Cream Rain Clouds

Set out clear plastic cups filled with about 2 inches of water.  Adults spray enough shaving cream into the cup to cover the water.  Provide small cups with blue water and droppers.  Children use the droppers to drop blue water onto the shaving cream.  The blue water eventually breaks through, and it “rains” into the clear water below.

water-cycle-demonstration-bag (photo credit playdough to plato)

  1. Water Cycle Demonstration Bags

Provide clear baggies and Sharpie markers.  Let kids draw the ocean on the bottom, a cloud on one upper corner, and the sun on the other.  Put a small cupful of blue water into the bag, seal it, and then seal it again with clear packing tape.  Let the kids take this home and tape it to a sunny window.  After about ½ hour, the water will start to evaporate, and condensation will form.  Tapping the bag will make it “rain.”

water-absorption(photo credit Little Bins for Little Hands)

  1. Water Absorption

Provide trays, cotton balls, small cups of blue water and droppers.  Children use the droppers to place drops of water onto the tray.  Then, they use the cotton ball to soak up the water (this is actually pretty cool).  Once the cotton is saturated, they can make it “rain” back into the cup.

Again, I am sorry that I forgot to take photos.  I’ve attributed the pictures that I did use.

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