20+ Winter Science Experiments for Grades K through 5

Get ready for some great hands-on winter science experiments! We love hands-on science around here, and we are determined not to let the cold weather stop us. In fact, we’re going to learn about ice, snow, sledding, hibernation and more all winter long. 

winter science experiments for kids

Science with a Holiday Theme 

Make some awesome holiday decorations and learn about science at the same time with the Ice Jelly Marbles Experiment from Steve Spangler Science.

Erupting Ornaments from Little Bins for Little Hands. 

These star shaped windows clings demonstrate the scientific concepts of diffusion, floatation and evaporation. From The Kitchen Pantry Scientist. 

 Get Outside for Winter Science!

What makes pinecones open? Lemon Lime Adventures figures it out. 

Explore different types of pine trees from Inspiration Laboratories. 

Even without leaves, you can do a winter tree identification study. Here’s how from About Education. 

Snow and Ice Science

Do mittens really keep our hands warm?  An experiment from us, Creekside Learning. 

Make frost in a can from Science Sparks.

Find out how many inches of snow it takes to melt into one inch of water from The Kitchen Pantry Scientist.

Experiment with how to get ice to melt faster from us, Creekside Learning.

Snowflake Science answers why snowflakes are always 6-sided, why they aren’t all alike and how you can capture your own snowflakes for closer observation, from The Homeschool Scientist.

Lifting up an ice cube with string seems like magic. Here’s the science behind it from The Kitchen Pantry Scientist. 

How to make Frozen Bubbles from Housing a Forest.

Make crystal snowflakes with Borax from Steve Spangler Science.

What’s involved in the Science of Sledding? Friction, gravity and more from Fireflies and Mudpies.

Winter Animal Science

Learn all about birds in winter from us, Creekside Learning.

More great tips for  winter birding with kids from What Do We Do All Day?.

Lots of great ideas for a Winter Nature Study from Simply Charlotte Mason. 

How does fat keep animals warm? Here’s a great experiment to find out how polar bears can swim in icy water. From us. 

Find out why animals that live in snowy regions need large paws from Frugal Fun For Boys. 

Exploring animal tracks in winter from KC Edventures. 

Lots more holiday ideas can be found below.
Ultimate Christmas Ideas Guide for Kids - Free

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Little House on the Prairie Books : My First Little House Series

I adored Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder when I was a child and was thrilled when one of the Creekside Learning Facebook followers told me about the My First Little House series.  This series is wonderful for younger kids, who are not quite ready for the chapter books. And, Little House on the Prairie Christmas is a great theme for literature and activities in December. 

Little House on the Prairie Christmas

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The My First Little House stories are based on the original Little House on the Prairie books.  The timing is a bit different in the First series. For example, most of the books include baby Carrie, Laura’s youngest sister in all the stories. In the original books, Carrie doesn’t appear until later, being much younger than her older sisters, Mary and Laura. But an introductory books to younger kids, that will only be noticed by the adults reading to them. This series is pure joy.

Christmas is a great time to discover these books because there are several Christmas themed books in the series. One of our favorites is Christmas in the Big Woods.  The book describes the very simple way that the Ingalls family celebrated Christmas, with a few simple gifts and some special foods.  

Little House on the Prairie Christmas

Little House Pancakes

Caroline Ingalls makes pancakes shaped like little men for the children to enjoy on Christmas.  This inspired us to make lots of different shaped pancakes. 

Little House on the Prairie Books by Laura Ingalls Wilder

 We took metal cookie cutters and filled them with pancake batter. You’ll want to grease the cookie cutters first with a little butter or some spray oil to prevent the batter from sticking. We flipped the pancakes over to the other side to cook, still inside the cookie cutters. Once both sides were done, the cookie cutters slipped right off and we had pretty shaped pancakes. 

Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House on the Prairie

 

 

Laura Ingalls Wilder 

 Little House Maple Syrup Snow Candy

In Laura’s chapter book, Little House in the Big Woods, the family helps Laura’s grandmother make Maple Sugar Snow Candy. This scene is also recreated in the book Christmas in the Big Woods in the My First Little House series.  For instructions on how to make maple syrup candy, click on the photo below.

Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House on the Prairie

This post is part of Rainy Day Mum’s Story Book Advent.   Click through to find more wonderful pairings of children’s holiday literature with go-along activities. More will be added throughout the season. 
Story Book Advent

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Ultimate Gift Guide for Homeschool Moms

Have your in-laws bought you ugly sweaters too many years in a row? Does your husband think a cheese slicer is an adequate way to show his love at the holidays?  Homeschool Moms, this one’s for you. Feel free forward a link to this post to your family or friends with a note like, “Hey, #3 is really cool!”  

What do homeschool moms need? Gifts for any budget.

 

{This post contains affiliate links. That means that if you click a link and purchase a product, I receive a small commission but it doesn’t cost you more. This post also contains sponsored links. I only recommend products I love to my readers.}

Gifts for Homeschool Moms

1. Laminator  List price: $80.49. Sale Price at time of publishing this post: $31.69. This one is worth watching prices for as it goes on sale several times throughout the year.   I use this to laminate maps, chore charts, math games, and more. It enables us to re-use things and save them from one child to another. Plus, it’s really fun to laminate stuff. 

Ultimate Gift Guide for Homeschool Moms from Creekside Learning

 2.  Laser Printer with Wireless Networking  List price: $139.99  Sale price at time of publishing this post: $93.99.
Superfast and perfect for printing downloaded materials–especially curriculum and ebooks with a lot of pages– and the ink drum lasts FOREVER.  We use this printer daily and we’ve only replaced the ink drum 3 times in 3 years. Hint: If the printer tells you it’s low on ink, take the drum out, shake it and put it back in. This buys me several more months of use each time. 

 

Ultimate Gift Guide for Homeschool Moms | Creekside Learning

Drawback:  It only prints in black and white.
Solution:  Printing on colored copy paper. I don’t miss color printing nearly as much as I thought I would and the savings on expensive color ink cartridges is so, so worth it.  

3.  Homeschool Planner. $8.00  I’ve been using this planner since last September and I adore it. It’s super customizable. Melissa at Mama Miss Designs used real live homeschooling mommas to give her input on what to include in this planner. Print only what you’ll use. Print it out yourself or take it to a copy store. 

I love this homeschool planner. I'll be using it again next year!

 

4.  Basket full of office/school supplies:  Put together a pretty basket of Post-It Notes, Sharpies, mechanical pencils, paper clips, an extra stapler and tape dispenser (my kids are always taking my stapler and tape dispenser) and maybe a gift card to a local teacher supply store. 

 

 

Gifts for homeschool moms to fit every budget.

 

 

 5.  A Gracious Space: Daily Reflections to Sustain Your Homeschooling Commitment.  $9.95  Inspiration from Julie Bogart, homeschooling mom alumni.  In the one-per-day format, this book of 50 essays reminds us of why we do what we do. Although this is the fall edition, the essays are applicable to every season. A truly wonderful resource full of encouragement.

Love this daily inspiration for homeschooling parents. I read it every morning with my cup of coffee. Starts the day right.

 

 6.  The always loved  Amazon gift card for books, books, books and everything else, too. What can’t you get at Amazon, really? Live shrimp?  Actually you can buy live shrimp on Amazon. {Please note, if you are a husband reading this post for gift ideas for your wife, DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT buy her live shrimp as a gift, unless she specifically asks for it.}

Gifts that homeschool moms love.

 

 7. Comb Binding System. I use this for many things, including downloaded curriculum that I’ve printed out, my homeschool planner, saving major space instead of using 3-ring binders for anything, and for special projects my kids are working on that contain a lot of pages, such as this book my daughter wrote and had on display in our local public library (I’m super proud of this kid!). 

Using a comb binding system in your homeschool.

 

 8.  Restaurant Gift Cards.  This is a great response when your in-laws ask you what you want for a gift.  Because saying “a laundress” seems a little over the top, even though it would be quite useful.  But I digress.  Gift cards for family favorite eat-in or take-out restaurants will be very much appreciated by any homeschooling family.  And, you can order them on Amazon. You don’t even have to leave your couch. 

Great gifts for homeschooling families.

 

9.  Babysitting Coupons. Cost: Your time.  People often ask homeschooling moms how we can spend all that time with our kids.  Guess what? Mostly, we can and we enjoy it and we cope with whatever happens on those not-so-good days but we all need a break.

 Bonus points if you babysit a homeschooling mom’s kids at your house, leaving her alone in her house to wear her fuzzy slippers and read a book. Make sure you tell her no cleaning, cooking or lesson planning allowed.  Do you know what silence sounds like in your own house?  Me, either, but I bet it is really lovely.  

 


This gift guide is part of the Gift Guides for Kids series, hosted by the fabulous Erica at What Do We Do All Day? Want to see more gift guides for all ages, interests and budgets? Click the photo below to go to 75+ more unique gift guides.

gifts for all budgets

Or stop by our collaborative Pinterest board and give your pinning fingers a work-out. 
Follow Erica • What Do We Do All Day?’s board Gift Guides for Kids on Pinterest.

 

Disclosure:  This post sponsored, in part, by Brave Writer. Affiliate links from Amazon and Mama Miss Designs. All photos used with permission. 

 

Gifts for Minecraft Fans

Minecraft is here to stay. All three of my kids continue to play it but my 10-year-old is absolutely obsessed.  I’m betting you have some young Minecraft fans in your house, too.  From finding that perfect gift to purchase or making a great DIY present, here are my top (kid-approved) recommendations for gifts for Minecraft fans. 

Minecraft Gifts

{This post contains affiliate links. That means that if you purchase any products via the links in this post, I will receive a wee little commission but you still pay the same price. Soon I’ll have enough to go out for sushi. Thanks!}

 Minecraft: Essential Handbook from Scholastic  There are actually four books in this series. Each time my 10-year-old son has received one, he has buried his nose in it for hours and carried it around for days. He continues to use them as reference books when playing the game. I’m like, “Yay, he is reading!”

Minecraft books

Image source: Amazon

 

LEGO Minecraft There are several LEGO kits available with the Minecraft theme. When my son has used up his screen time for the day, I often find him building with LEGOs. He cannot wait to get Minecraft themed LEGOs.

Minecraft Legos

Image Source: Amazon

 

Minecraft Retro Creeper Shirt For some reason, all the 8 to 10-year-old boys I know can’t seem to have enough Minecraft clothing. Now that it’s winter, we’ll have to add a long-sleeved version to the wardrobe. Or perhaps a scarf. There are also socks. Endless fashion options, really. 

Minecraft long-sleeved shirt

Image source: Amazon

 

Minecraft  Action Figures  I’m thinking these creepy looking things would make great stocking stuffers. 

Minecraft stocking stuffers

 

Minecraft Building Ideas eBook At $2.99, you can’t go wrong with these downloadable instruction books. These Kindle books can be loaded onto any smartphone, tablet or computer. They really helped my son take his creative world to the next level.  He had to pay very close attention to these clear but detailed step-by-step instructions. We bought him the first one as a gift, downloaded it to our iPad mini and wrapped the mini in a gift bag with a note to see what was newly downloaded. He then used his allowance to buy several similar books. 

Minecraft gifts

Image Source: Amazon

Minecraft Papercraft  It’s Origami Minecraft. Yet another screen-free option.

Minecraft Gift Guide

Image Source: Amazon

 

DIY Minecraft: Gifts You Can Make

DIY Creeper Christmas Ornament from Totally The Bomb.

Minecraft Creeper gifts

Make your own Minecraft Creeper Shoes from Candace Creates.

Minecraft gifts you can make

DIY Diamond Sword and Diamond Pickaxe from Vinobaby’s Voice.

Make your own Minecraft Creeper t-shirts from Jamie of Southern revivals guest posting on L’il Luna.

Felt Minecraft Toy tutorial from Attic 24.

Endless crafty possibilities with pearler beads and Minecraft patterns from What Rose Knows

Follow our Pinterest board, aptly named Minecraft Obsession.  
Follow Julie Kirkwood, Creekside Learning’s board Minecraft Obsession on Pinterest.

Subscribe to the Creekside Learning newsletter for awesomeness in your in-box just two times per month. And free stuff, like our Scientific Method printable cards, for subscribers only.   

Free scientific method printables.

 

Easy Peasy Gingerbread Houses

Milk carton gingerbread houses.

These milk carton gingerbread houses are so easy to make.  They are quick and fun, an activity that we were first introduced to when my kids were younger and attended a weekly play group. We’ve been making them ever since.

You will need:
***A pint sized carton (or cut a quart sized carton in half)
***Graham crackers
***Spreadable frosting
***Candy

Start with a half-pint carton and a stack of graham crackers.  [Read more…]