Definition of a Toddler
A little person, around 1 or 2 years old, with a high pitched voice, short attention span, dodgy fine motor skills and a propensity to ‘test’ boundaries.
Sound familiar? Haha, been there!
Introducing science to toddlers can sometimes be a challenge – but have a look through some of these ideas that we’ve done with our toddler, or think might be appropriate. Hopefully there should be a few that you think would suit your little one.
Fun Science Activities for 1-2 Year Olds
Want even more toddler-friendly science activities?
Here are some other ideas that I’ve found from around the web:
- Exploring ice, and how it melts into water is an easy introduction to temperature and states of matter. Adding arctic or antarctic animals provides a chance to explore habitats too. From Messy Little Monster.
- Are there ways that we can make ice melt faster? This is a fun science experiment that can be adapted for toddlers or preschoolers – with optional dinosaurs! From Living Montessori Now.
- Make a water bottle fountain, which lets kids see that air is present even though we can’t see it, from Learn With Play at Home.
- Buggy and Buddy have a classic Sink or Float experiment that’s fun for this age group. It’s so easy to do, and there’s an immediate result. You could ask her prediction beforehand, and then test to see if she’s correct. Or you could just let her explore and play. 🙂
- Learn a little more about water density with this easy floating egg experiment. From There’s Just One Mommy.
- Oobleck is another fun one for little kids – it’s taste-safe, and so sensory to touch! And being a Newtonian fluid, it has the properties of both a solid and a liquid, which is really cool. Messy Little Monster added some penguins to their oobleck for added Antarctic roleplay.
- Mom Explores the Smokies has a fun oral science experiment that some toddlers might like to try – what items can you ‘pick up’ with a straw? I love that this is such a low prep experiment, that you could do almost anywhere.
- And almost the opposite – DIY straw rockets, which illustrate that that air can have force. Kids can design their own (although an adult will need to help stick them together). Then, blow! From Housing a Forest.
- Preschool Inspirations has a cool magnetic sensory bottle idea, which is a fun way for little kids to explore the effects of magnetism safely. (Just be sure to use a jumbo-sized magnet.)
- Here’s something for a hot summer’s day – experiment to find out what melts in the sun? From Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls.
- Or try making your own lemonade – perfect for summer! From Learn with Play at Home.
Even, EVEN more toddler science play ideas?
I’ve tried to include activities here that are generally taste-safe (ie not toxic or choking hazards), but if you have a child who is no longer mouthing things, then you could check out the ideas on our Science for 3-4 Year Olds page – many of these activities are open-ended, and can easily be adapted to a younger age group.