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Whether you’re relaxing at home or participating in summer school, there are countless K-5 social studies and science lessons that you can easily incorporate into your plans.
Here are five fun activities to keep children’s brains growing during vacation:
Popcorn is one of those foods that tastes like summer. The Hopping Corn science lesson uses this snack to teach about chemical reactions.
Mixing together baking soda and vinegar causes a reaction that forms carbon dioxide. When combined with water and popcorn in a jar, this reaction makes the kernels appear to “hop.” The activity can also be used to teach the states of matter–gas, liquid, and solid.
Leak Proof Bag
The Leak Proof Bag experiment only requires three things: a plastic sealable bag, sharp pencils, and water. Because it should be done outside, this activity is ideal in warm weather.
Students partially fill a bag with water and then slowly poke sharp pencils through the bag. Surprisingly, no water comes out! This lesson can teach students about the chemistry of polymers, like those in the plastic bag.
Create a Marine Protected Area
Warm beaches are often a symbol of summer, and this geography activity by National Geographic is a perfect substitute for an ocean field trip.
Students analyze how humans use natural resources from the ocean. They then work together to design their own marine protected area.
Baseball History Primary Sources
Summer is baseball season, which makes it a perfect time for a history lesson. The Library of Congress offers a collection of baseball primary sources and tools for analyzing them.
You can also compare each source to both common core and state-specific standards! Use it as a guide to build a primary source investigation lesson.
Make Your Own Thermometer
Whether it’s thunderstorms or spiking hot weather, summer temperatures can vary a lot. This lesson by Scientific American teaches kids how to make their own thermometers.
They can use their thermometer to measure and record summer temperatures and examine the changes they see overtime. Use this science activity to help teach concepts about weather and climate.
Do you have any favorite summer lessons? Comment your ideas below!