National Science Week is Australia’s annual celebration of science and technology. View resources and information on Science Week here!
Science activities can be very engaging for kids but may feel daunting if you are trying on your own for the first time. With STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) being incorporated into curriculum, it is important to bring this learning into a child’s home too.
We have created six fun and EASY science activities using common or easy to find household items. You can download the activities by clicking through the links on the images below.
This activity teaches children about sound. The vibrations of the string, caused by movement, travel along the string and are amplified by the hollow cup, which acts as a sounding board. If you cover the open end of the cup, the vibrations from the string are almost silent = no sound).
This activity teaches kids about reaction. The baking soda is a compound called sodium bicarbonate. The vinegar is an acid. When they get mixed together, they react to produce carbon dioxide gas (hence all the bubbly). The detergent helps to trap the bubbles created by the carbon dioxide, so you get much better ‘lava’ from your volcano.
Recycled crayons teaches children about the phases of matter. By heating the crayons, you can change their state from one form to another. Once cooled, the forces are strong enough to hold the particles together again to make a solid. The crayons start out as a solid, the heat melts them into a liquid, then they return to their original state as they cool.
Stringed instruments make a sound when their strings vibrate, that’s why you need to pluck the strings of a harp to hear the notes. The strings make different notes depending on their thickness, the amount of tension they’re under and their length. The sound hole helps to make the sound louder by amplifying the vibrations and allowing the top of the shoebox to vibrate slightly. The pencil raises the strings off the lid so they can vibrate more freely.
This activity educates children on energy transfer. When you pull back the rubber band, you transfer energy to it. The rubber band stores the energy until you let go of it. Once you let go, the rubber band transfers energy to the marshmallow to make it fly through the air.
Here, we learn about oxidation. When you draw your map or message, the lemon juice is absorbed into the paper. By heating the paper, you create a chemical reaction that releases a chemical element called carbon in the juice. When the lemon juice comes into contact with air, and is heated, it turns brown as carbon is released – a process called oxidation.
We hope you enjoy trying these out! What are your favourite science experiments to do?
Is science not for you? How about trying out some of these awesomely engaging edible activities!
Here at the Pyjama Foundation, we’re big fans of arts and crafts! Creative activities have so many benefits for kids of all ages, whether it’s developing fine motor skills in pre-schoolers or sparking an interest in STEM fields for teenagers. Craft can be a fun way to encourage play-based learning, but it can also serve as an outlet for stress and encouragement for commutation and connection between child and adult.
So, get ready to pull out the popsicle sticks and paintbrushes – here are our 4 favourite craft ideas for the week!
This colourful little unicorn friend is not only super fun to make, but also provides a source of creative play. This tutorial could be easily adapted to create a family of different fantasy creatures – we’re thinking dragons, fairies, and monsters! Why not encourage your child to invent a simple story with the creatures they create?
Click on this link to view the tutorial, or visit @kidscraftroom on Instagram for more.
When we saw this sweet craft idea on Instagram, we knew we had to share it with our Pyjama Angels! This is a great way to re-use some materials from your recycling bin, as all you really need is a small piece of cardboard – and your imagination! Simply cut out a circle in the middle of your ”camera” (adult supervision definitely required for this tricky shape) and decorate your camera however you like. Create a list of things to find on your scavenger hunt, then head off with your camera to spy items through the viewfinder!
We also have some scavenger hunt ideas ready to go if you need some extra inspiration – click here to check them out.
Visit @thechildhoodglen on Instagram for more.
This one is a messy but super fun activity to do with your child! All you need to make the puffy paint is shaving cream and PVA glue in equal parts, and a few drops of food colouring. You can also use some other craft supplies or household items to make these ice-cream cones really fun to play with – like cardboard cut-out cones, old paper straws, and sprinkles.
Visit @craftandboogie on Instagram for more.
Making this marshmallow catapult is a fun activity to do together with an older child. You’ll need a quite a few paddlepop sticks, a wooden or plastic spoon, some rubber bands and some mini marshmallows. Our favourite part about this craft activity is that you can eat your projectiles after you’ve launched them!
Click on this link to view the tutorial, or visit @hellowonderful_co on Instagram for more.