Tot School Tuesday: Weather

Teaching about weather is always one of my favorite science topics because there are so many great experiments to try.  I wasn't sure how I was going to teach about weather in a toddler friendly way without true science experiments, but I am really excited about all the fun activities we tried this week!

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Here were our plans for Weather Week:

And here is what we actually did:
Each day we read a different weather related book (or 2!).  I also had a bin with lots of weather themed books to read throughout the day so we could really talk about all of the different types of weather. Here were our favorites:

Down Comes the Rain by Franklyn Branley
Once There Was a Raindrop by Judith Anderson and Mike Gordon
Learn About Snow by Christopher Hernandez
Learn About Rain by Christopher Hernandez
Learn About Wind by Christopher Hernandez
LearnAbout Sun by Christopher Hernandez
 Umbrella & Rain Craft:
For this activity I cut out an umbrella and handle shape from colored paper and had Madelynn glue it together to make an umbrella first. Then I filled a cup with blue liquid watercolor paint, gave her an eyedropper and let her squeeze raindrops onto her picture.  We practiced a little bit before we dropped water on the paper because she had to figure out how to squeeze gently to make drops and not a flood ;)
 Eye Dropper Water Play:
This fine motor activity was super easy and fun for Madelynn.  I gave her colored water, a small sorting tray, a few cups and her fine motor dropper then let her just play however she wanted.  There's something about water play that really keeps her engaged, especially when she is able to just free play and explore.
 Cloud and Rain Suncatcher:
Making contact paper sun catchers are super easy to do for any theme and this one turned out even cuter than I originally pictured.  To prep the activity I cut out the cloud and 3 raindrops from black cardstock that I doubled up to make 2 identical sets.  I cut a small piece on contact paper and laid it on the table sticky side up. Then I stuck one set of the cutouts on the page and added cut outs for the eyes and mouth. I also set out small tissue paper squares in white and blue for Madelynn to use and let her fill in the cloud and rain drops by sorting the colors.  Separating the tissue paper squares was a bit of good fine motor practice as well as they were all stuck together from cutting. After she filled in all of the shapes, I glued the matching outlines on top of the cloud and raindrops then placed another sheet of contact paper over top to seal it. Finally I cut the excess contact paper from around the shapes and taped the raindrops to the cloud with fishing line so they would hang underneath.  A little bit more work for me in this craft but they always turn out so cute!

Dot Stamp Rainbow:
Okay so I know rainbows aren't really weather, but after talking about rain and sun I figured we'd talk a little about rainbows too. So I made this rainbow printable and lined up the stampers in order for Madelynn to use.  I also placed a color version next to her that she could look at to see what color to use next in her rainbow.
Pony Bead Rainbow:
Threading beads on pipe cleaners takes a lot of concentration so this was a fun quiet activity for Madelynn to do.  I started with a foam floral block and added pipe cleaners for each color of the rainbow. Then I set out cups with beads in each color for Madelynn to thread onto the pipe cleaners.  I helped her with pulling out the color pipe cleaner she wanted to do and then pushed them back in afterwards. Overall pretty simple and I love the finished 3D product!
 Rainbow Limbo:
To get Madelynn moving this week we played rainbow limbo. For our rainbow, I tied a string between the two columns on the sides of our dining room and tied rainbow colored scarves on so they hung almost to the floor.  Then Madelynn tried to go under (or through) the rainbow in all different ways that I called out. (hopping, crawling, bear walks, etc.)
 Umbrella Bean Bag Toss:
Madelynn still isn't the greatest at throwing, so any time I can find a game to practice throwing is a plus. For this game I opened an umbrella and set out a pile of beanbags. Madelynn and I took turns trying to throw them into the umbrella. She really just wanted to watch me throw them, so taking turns was a good compromise.
 Rainbow Scarf Dance:
We do a lot of dancing in our house so I decided why not add scarves into the mix? I piled up all our rainbow scarves, turned Toddler Pandora on our TV and let Madelynn so wild.  Super easy and super fun.
 Build a Sun Snack:
To make our sun snack I prepped cheese slices by using a small round cookie cutter to make circles, and a knife to cut small triangles.  Then I set them out on a plate with round crackers for Madelynn to build and snack.
Pineapple and Carrot Sun:
To make this snack I cored a pineapple and cut it into a round slice.  Then I halved carrots lengthwise and placed them around the pineapple in the center.  Simple, healthy and delicious.
 Build a Rainbow:
This snack was great for color sorting, and gave me an excuse to eat froot loops for breakfast all week ;)  You can grab the printable at the end of this post to do your own sorting too.
 Rainbow Fruit Cup:
Another yummy healthy snack we made this week was this rainbow fruit cup.  We always have loads of fruit in our house so this one was easy to whip up. I used strawberries, oranges, pineapple, blueberries and grapes for my rainbow colors and Madelynn devoured the whole thing!
 Weather Sensory Bin:
Our first sensory bin this week started with blue rock vase filler, a toy sun, cotton ball clouds, pipe cleaner lightning bolts, blue gem rocks for raindrops, foam snowflakes, and clear round gems for hail. I gave Madelynn this bin with a variety of scoops and cups to explore.
 Rain & Wind Bin:
This bin was filled with water that I tinted blue, little people, cups, straws, and cotton balls.  Madelynn had fun squeezing the rain out of the cotton ball clouds and blowing bubbles with the straws that I gave her to make wind.
 Shaving Cream Cloud Play:
All you need for this sensory activity is shaving cream and a tray.  I literally just put a bunch of shaivng cream on the tray and let Madelynn squish and play for as long as she wanted.
Weather I-Spy:
Using our first sensory bin for the week, I took pictures of each weather item and then had Madelynn search for them and sort them out. We talked about each type of weather as she found each piece.

If you'd like any of the printables we used this week you can grab them here:

Here is what we have planned for next week:

And the themes that will be coming soon:
And if you want to catch up on our past Tot School Plans, you can find them all here:


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