Do you have a water table in your yard? Kids love them and you can make a simple one by filling a large bin with water and elevating it on a table. Water tables provide a sensory experience for kids while keeping them cool. Did you know that you can use items you already have at home to make water table play more fun and encourage learning? Read on to see how to do it and when you done have some more water fun with the kids with this Cup and Water Race.
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- Water table or a large bin with water
- Recycled plastic containers
For a few weeks, I had been saving plastic bottles and containers when we finished what was in them. I cleaned all the containers and set them up, along with some sponges, near the water table for the kids to explore.
My kids experimented with the best way to fill the bottles. One of my daughters discovered that if she held a bottle underwater, then it would fill with water.
She decided to fill up another plastic container I provided. Her goal was the fill the entire plastic container with water. We talked about how many bottles of water it would take to fill up the larger container. The kids each took guess and then we waited to see the results. For the record, my three year old guessed the closest.
The sponges were another big hit at the water table. By soaking up water and wringing it out, the kids worked the small muscles in their hands. They also learned how the sponge would hold more water the longer it was submerged in the water table. A sponge that was just dunked with have less water squeezed out if it.
My youngest decided that she could fill a bucket using the sponge to transfer water. Over and over again, she held the sponge under the water in the water table and squeezed it out over her bucket. At one point, her sister offered her a bottle to finish the job, but she insisted on using the sponge water transfer method until she was done.
When she was finished with the sponges, she dumped all the water out of her bucket and used an old syrup bottle to fill it up again.
Even a cleaned out bottle of hair detangler became a fun water toy when we filled it with water. My daughter loved squirting the bottle, though it took her a while to find a way to do that. This required a lot of strength for a four year old!
My daughters have been playing with their water table play props for the past week. They have used them ina variety of imaginative scenarios and have been learning lots of about properties of water and even surface tension as they have filled containers to the very top. All from some items that would have been taking up room in the recycling bin.
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