Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Treasure Ice sensory play

Sunday night I got out two sandwich-sized cheapo tupperwares (the thinner ones make it easier to pop out the ice when you're ready to play), filled them half way with water and dropped in some treasures (beads, flat marbles, stones, colored paperclips, snowflake sequins, buttons, poker chips, etc., with bigger items for the little guy who tries to eat everything).  I froze them for a couple hours and before I went to bed I added another layer of water and a few more items. 
Monday morning I told the kids the river fairies had brought a piece of frozen river for them!  We took them outside, along with a tub of water and some salt.
They had fun touching, holding and dropping their pieces of ice.  We poured salt on, and I was thinking we'd talk about how ice melts faster with salt, but there was really no interest in this--they just wanted to try and get the stuff out! 
After a while we dropped them into the tub of water (I pointed out that ice floats) and they poured water over them to get them to melt.  There was ice play, ice eating, and finally all the treasures came out, so there was even a bit of fighting over whose rock was whos. 
But it was a successful sensory activity--little hands explored new textures, temperatures and surfaces (and little mouths did, too!) and they also absorbed some science concepts about the properties of matter (solids and liquids). 
I think we'll do this again soon!  Easy and fun!

-could be themed (animals, holidays, etc.)
-could be done in an ice cube tray to make individual treasure ices
-could be made edible by using berries
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