Education

25 Fun and Free Kindergarten Science Activities For Budding Scientists

Kindergarten minds are curious about pretty much everything … just like scientists! This is the perfect time to start doing hands-on science projects and experiments. Kids love to try things out and learn how the world works, which is exactly what these kindergarten science activities give them a chance to do. They’re all simple to set up and easy enough for any teacher (or parent) to tackle, too. Choose a few and watch your students’ faces light up as they learn!

1. Use apples to learn what science is all about

This apple investigation is a great way to start. It encourages kids to examine an apple using a variety of techniques to learn its properties. Get a free printable worksheet for this activity at the link.

Learn more: Preschool Play & Learn

2. Learn how germs spread

Young student's hands covered in red glitter over a yellow tray

There’s never been a better time to add a hand-washing experiment to your list of kindergarten science activities. Use glitter as a stand-in for germs, and learn how important washing your hands with soap really is.

Learn more: Gift of Curiosity

3. Use your senses to explore the properties of mystery items

Five paper bags labeled Fall, with an apple, sock, acorns, leaves, and pinecones in front (Kindergarten Science)

Mystery bags are always a hit with kids. Tuck a variety of objects inside, then encourage kids to feel, shake, smell, and explore as they try to determine what the items are without looking. 

Learn more: Simple Play Ideas

4. Play with fizzing ice cubes

Child's hands holding a spray bottle over colorful ice cubes on a wood surface

While kinders may not entirely understand the concept of acid-base reactions, they’ll still get a kick out of spraying these baking soda ice cubes with lemon juice and watching them fizz away!

Learn more: The Play-Based Mom

5. Find out what sinks and what floats

Child's hand placing items in a bin of water to see if they sink or float

Kids learn about the property of buoyancy and get some practice making predictions and recording the results with this easy experiment. All you need is a container of water to get started.

Learn more: Buggy and Buddy

6. Explore buoyancy with oranges

Tall glass vase of water with unpeeled orange floating and peeled orange sunk at the bottom

Expand your exploration of buoyancy with this cool demo. Kids will be surprised to learn that even though an orange feels heavy, it floats. That is, until you peel off the skin!

Learn more: Playdough to Plato

7. Sniff away at scent bottles

Small bottles labeled cherry, almond, cucumber, grapefruit, peppermint

Here’s another way to engage the senses. Drop essential oils onto cotton balls, then seal them inside spice bottles. Kids sniff the bottles and try to identify the smell.

Learn more: Things to Share and Remember

8. Play with magnets

Plastic bottles filled with pipe cleaners and metal springs with a large blue mar magnet (Kindergarten Science)

Magnet play is one of our favorite kindergarten science activities. Place a variety of items into small bottles, and ask kids which ones they think will be attracted to the magnets. The answers may surprise them!

Learn more: Left Brain Craft Brain

9. Waterproof a boot

Worksheet showing drawing of a boot, covered with various materials like plastic, foil, and paper

This experiment lets kindergarteners try their hand at “waterproofing” a boot with a variety of materials. They use what they already know to predict which materials will protect the paper boot from water, then experiment to see if they’re right.

Learn more: Science Sparks

10. Watch colored water walk

Jars of colored water in a circle, with paper towels running from one to the next

Fill three small jars with red, yellow, and blue food coloring and some water. Then place empty jars in between each. Fold paper towel strips and place them in the jars as shown. Kids will be amazed as the paper towels pull the water from full jars to empty ones, mixing and creating new colors!

Learn more: Messy Little Monster

11. Create a tornado in a jar

As you fill in the weather during daily calendar time, you might have a chance to talk about severe storms and tornadoes. Show your students how twisters form with this classic tornado jar experiment.

Learn more: One Little Project

12. Suspend water inside a jar

Student's hand lifting an upside-down jar from a bowl of green water, with water kept inside the jar by air pressure

Lots of kindergarten science activities involve water, which is terrific because kids love to play in it! In this one, show your students how air pressure keeps water in a jar, even when it’s upside-down.

Learn more: A Mothership Down

13. Dig into some soil science

Child examining dirt on a white tarp with a magnifying glass (Kindergarten Science Activities)

Ready to get your hands in the dirt? Scoop up some soil and examine it more closely, looking for rocks, seeds, worms, and other items.

Learn more: Go Science Kids

14. See popcorn kernels dance

Popcorn kernels in a jar of water, rising to the top due to air bubbles (Kindergarten Science Activities)

Here’s an activity that always feels a bit like magic. Drop an Alka-Seltzer tablet into a glass of water with popcorn kernels, and watch as the bubbles cling to the kernels and make them rise and fall. So cool!

Learn more: Everyday Chaos and Calm

15. Mix up some Oobleck

Bartholomew and the Oobleck book next to a bowl of thick green liquid

Perhaps no book leads so perfectly in a science lesson as Dr. Seuss’s Bartholomew and the Oobleck. Just what is oobleck? It’s a non-Newtonian fluid, which looks like a liquid but takes on the properties of a solid when squeezed. Weird, messy… and so much fun!

Learn more: ABCs of Literacy

16. Make it rain with shaving cream

Clear jar filled with water, with shaving cream floating on top and water coloring dripping from the shaving cream

Here’s another neat weather-related science experiment. Make shaving cream “clouds” on top of the water, then drop food coloring in to watch it “rain.”

Learn more: One Little Project

17. Grow crystal letters

Red pipe cleaner twisted into the shape of a Q, with crystals grown on it (Kindergarten Science Activities)

No list of kindergarten science activities would be complete without a crystal project! Use pipe cleaners to make the letters of the alphabet (numbers are good too), then grow crystals on them using a supersaturated solution.

Learn more: A Gift of Curiosity

18. Bend light with water

Glass of water with piece of paper behind it showing arrow pointing to the right. Piece of paper not behind water has arrow pointing left.

Light refraction produces some incredible results. Your students will think it’s magic when the arrow on the paper changes direction … until you explain that it’s all due to the way water bends the light.

Learn more: Go Science Girls

19. Blow up your fingerprints

Child holding up a balloon with an enlarged blue fingerprint on it (Kindergarten Science Activities)

You don’t need a microscope to look at fingerprints up close! Instead, have each student make a print on a balloon, then blow it up to see the whorls and ridges in detail.

Learn more: The Natural Homeschool

20. Bounce popcorn with sound waves

Yellow bowl covered tightly with plastic wrap, with popcorn on top, next to a boom box

Sound may be invisible to the naked eye, but you can see the waves in action with this demo. The plastic wrap-covered bowl is the perfect stand-in for an eardrum.

Learn more: Premeditated Leftovers

21. Build a three little pigs STEM house

House model built of toothpicks and gumdrops, with construction paper pig inside (Kindergarten Science Activities)

Can your little engineers create a house that protects a little piggie from the big bad wolf? Try this STEM challenge and find out!

Learn more: Sweet Sounds of Kindergarten

22. Draw a marble maze

Child using a magnet to move a metal marble through a paper maze

Tell kids they’re going to move a marble without actually touching it, and watch their eyes widen in surprise! They’ll have fun drawing mazes to guide a metal marble through with a magnet from beneath.

Learn more: Go Science Girls

23. Germinate a seed

Jar filled with damp paper towels and a seed growing roots

There’s something about seeing a seed develop roots and shoots with your very eyes that’s just so incredible. Sprout bean seeds in paper towels inside a glass jar to give it a try.

Learn more: How Wee Learn

24. Move a butterfly’s wings with static electricity

Student's hand holding a blue balloon over a tissue paper butterfly, with wing attracted to the balloon

Part art project, part science lesson … all fun! Kids make tissue paper butterflies, then use the static electricity from a balloon to flap the wings.

Learn more: I Heart Crafty Things

25. Change the color of flowers

Clear cups filled with colored water, holding white carnations tinted the colors of the water (Kindergarten Science Activities)

This is one of those classic kindergarten science activities everyone should try at least once. Learn how flowers “drink” water using capillary action, and create beautiful blooms while you’re at it!

Learn more: Fun Learning for Kids

Keep the learning going with these 17 Kindergarten Math Games That Make Numbers Fun from Day One.

Plus, the 25 Best Educational Toys and Games for Kindergarten.

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