April Showers

April Showers

The children’s verse “April Showers bring May flowers” sets the theme for this month’s fun ideas.  For many families spring does bring unpredictable weather with some warm days and some cold days, rain and sometimes snow.  When it is too cold to go outside kids can make a rainbow with spray bottles or bend water with a balloon. When the weather is warm outside they can set up a sprinkler obstacle course that will water the yard and provide a lot of fun.

Spray Bottle Rainbow

Items Needed

  • 4 spray bottles -- you can reuse bottles such as Windex
  • 4 different colors of powdered paint
  • Large paper
  • Easel
  • Tablespoon
  1. Fill each bottle ¾ of the way with warm water.
  2. Add 1 tablespoon of powdered paint to each bottle.
  3. Shake well until all of the paint is dissolved -- add more paint as desired but make sure it all dissolves, or it will clog the spray bottle.
  4. Hang a large piece of paper (flip chart paper works great) on the easel.
  5. Allow each child to create a piece of art by spraying the colored water onto the paper.
  6. Allow the paper to dry.

It is a good idea to put an old towel under the easel to catch drips of the colored water or prevent messes if the kids spray too much. This activity is a great way to make a rainbow or any other picture that layers color.


Bending Water

This experiment will introduce kids to static electricity.

Items Needed

  • A balloon
  • A sink
  • Dry hair
  1. Blow up the balloon and tie the end so the air stays inside.
  2. Turn on the water in the sink so there is a very thin stream.
  3. Rub the balloon on your hair for 10 seconds. Slowly move the balloon close to the water without touching it. Watch what happens.

The static electricity built up on the balloon attracts the water and makes the stream move.  Any item that carries static electricity can be used for this experiment. Let the kids try using a comb and a plastic pen.

You can have more fun with static electricity if you blow up a second balloon. Rub the second balloon on your hair while standing in front of a mirror. When you pull the balloon away from your hair watch to see what your hair does. Static electricity is also what gives that ‘zap’ in the winter after walking across the carpet in socks.

Sprinkler Obstacle Course 

When the weather warms up outside, kids will enjoy getting out in it. One way to help them get rid of some of that energy is to set up an obstacle course race and hold a competition. 

  1. Place one or more sprinklers around the yard, but don’t turn on the water yet.
  2. Add other obstacles such as a hula hoop to jump through, a slide to go down, a tunnel to crawl through or some cones to run around. Make sure to place the items so they are within range of the sprinkler when it is turned on.
  3. Have one person standing next to the faucet so they can turn the water on and off randomly. 

The object of the game is to race through the course without getting wet. If you get wet you have to go back to the beginning and start over again. If you have a timer you can see who gets through the course the fastest. If you don’t have a sprinkler available, give several people water guns or spray bottles and have them try to spray the person running the course.

April showers that bring May flowers are also bringing spring weather and sunshine. Enjoy these water-themed activities with your kids and have some fun this spring.

Photos by Monkey Mash Button and superhua

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Written by: Dawn Marcotte See other articles by Dawn Marcotte
About the Author:

Dawn Marcotte has a B.S in Elementary Education and a 12 year old autistic daughter who often spends too much time in front of one of her electronic devices. Dawn has created two websites www.thingstodowithkidsmn.com and  http://creativekids.thingstodowithkidsmn.com/ with lots of ideas for parents who want alternatives to television, computers, video games and the many other electronics that fill our lives.

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