Keep young minds sharp, hands busy, and brains inquisitive by choosing science activities to do with your children this summer.

  • Plant seeds in a soda bottle, make a fish print, create some rocket action with your little engineer, or bake a chemistry cake! Stuff to do for preschoolers through high school age at Awesome Summer Science Activities from education.com.
     
  • Charlotte Parent magazine offers up several simple ideas for Summer Science. Pick one each week!
     
  • Go for the unusual with Weird Science from Family Fun. Make your own lightning, have fun with a magic spoon, or get groovy while making a Psychedelic Lava Lite. These experiments are sure to keep your kids curious and engaged in the process.
     
  • Home Training Tools has the how-to on several cool science projects: everything from making a balloon rocket car and a little roller coaster, to growing stalactite crystals and creating a solar oven with a pizza box.
     
  • Your school district may have ideas for experiments over the summer. The whole "Summer Science Activities" list from the Baltimore Public Schools is super simple.

A Few Tips for Scientists Young and Old

  1. Always try out experiments before doing them with your children. This can helps you prepare for the materials you need, the mess your kids could make, and prepares you for guiding them through the process.
     
  2. Make sure you have picked a good spot for your projects — one with plenty of room.
     
  3. Have materials ready, or have kids help gather household materials for simple projects that do not require any store-bought items. They will appreciate knowing all the things they can do with stuff around the house!
     
  4. Have your kids draw pictures, or write down a few sentences about what happened during the activities. This is a great way to integrate writing, reading, and art with science.
     
  5. Do messy projects outside. It's what summer weather is for!
     
  6. Incorporate as many of the projects as you can in with daily life. Use the pizza box solar oven to keep something warm. Have the kids help you in the family garden, then help them plant their own seeds in the soda bottle (see above). When your youngster scouts out a bunch of worms, help him build a wormery.
     
  7. Practice with the scientific method. Here are some resources to use with your children. Use these resources for help putting the process to work for inquiring minds:

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