Classroom Activity
Water Construction
Science skills will flow as freely as water in this water table activity.

AGES 4–5
ECT LOGO

Materials:

  • plastic tubes
  • sieve
  • milk or juice cartons (sizes: 1/2 pint, pint, and quart)
  • duct tape
  • adult scissors
  • plastic straws
  • food coloring
  • plastic smocks

Objective: Children will use a variety of materials in the water table to engage in science investigations about how water moves.

In Advance: Ask families to send in donation of plastic tubing and clean milk or juice cartons.

ACTIVITY

  1. Show children the collected materials and explain that they will use the materials in the water table to create water constructions.
  2. Invite a small group of children to the water table. Ask them to choose some items to use in the water. Encourage children to think of different ways that they can attach the materials.

  3. Explain to children that holes can be made into the bottom of the cartons so that water can flow through. Carefully, use sharp scissors to puncture a hole in the bottom of several cartons. Invite children to tape the cartons together. Ask a child to pour water into the top carton. What happens?
  4. Ask children to predict what would happen if holes were put into the sides of the cartons. Puncture the cartons and test their hypothesis.
  5. Invite children to place small tubing or plastic straws into the holes in the carton. Attach tubing to plastic funnels. Pour water through sieve. Encourage children to use the materials to observe how water moves.
  6. Combining food coloring with the water adds another element to children's investigations. Invite children to think of other materials that they could use for their water constructions. These could be items found in the classroom, recycled materials, or something from home. Keep the materials accessible for children to continue their investigations.

Curriculum Connection

Art: Make Watercolors. Invite a small group of children to the art table. Provide them with several small plastic cups, a small plastic pitcher or measuring cup of water, food coloring, drawing paper, and paintbrushes. Invite children to make their own watercolor paints. Ask them to predict how many drops of color it will take to make the paint. Children can test the colored water on paper until they are satisfied with each color. Encourage children to mix colors together to create other colors. Display the watercolors for all to celebrate.

BOOKS
I Am Water*
by Jean Marzollo
(Scholastic Inc.; $3.99)

The Magic Fish*
by Freya Littledale
(Scholastic Inc.; $3.25)

Water*
by Susan Canizares and Pamela Chanko
(Scholastic Inc.; $3.25)