Today, I gave Veronika full permission to raid the craft bin…in order to see what would sink or float from it, that is!
This was a cute variation on the simplest kind of “what sinks and what floats” activities for toddlers. Alternatively you could have your child gather toys from around the house, but using items from the craft bin gave us a wide variety of materials.
First, I simply asked her to predict what would happen as she dropped each item in. She was holding a metal clip to start and guessed, “Float!” Of course, it sank right to the bottom. Pom poms floated though!
We continued in this way, sometimes with unexpected results. Pony beads sank if they fell on their side. But if water evenly filled the hole in the center, they floated like inner tubes…until her little fingers poked them down. Pipe cleaners floated at first, but sank once fully saturated.
I thought tissue paper would be fun, and indeed Veronika loved that she could wad it up into little balls and then fish it out, but the dye started leaking off onto our hands. Whoops!
Wooden items (such as craft sticks) floated, while a big rubber eraser sank. And some things, like saturated strands of yarn, were purely fun to play with while wet! I loved watching her take note of each item as she plopped it in, and seeing her little brain register why some things stayed on the surface, while others fell to the bottom.
In sum, this is a neat way to sneak in a STEM lesson while a toddler thinks they’re just playing with items in water!