3 and 4 year olds is the age range that is often called “preschoolers” in Australia, and it’s such a great age for fun and simple science activities – at preschool or at home!
This is the age that my youngest daughter ‘Bumble Bee’ is right now, and so we’re doing loads of fun science (and STEM) projects that are age-appropriate for preschoolers at our place at the moment.
(We’ll be updating this page with more ideas as we try them, so remember to pop back regularly to find even more! Or you might like to subscribe to receive all our latest ideas via email.)
Fun Science and STEM Activities for 3-4 year olds
Want even more preschooler science activities?
If you are looking for MORE science ideas for preschool aged kids, you might also like:
- Make your own mini microscope using household items, on Childhood101.
- Can you dissolve a lollipop? From Fantastic Fun and Learning.
- Learn about prisms and make rainbows! From Buggy and Buddy.
- I’ve yet to meet a kid who doesn’t like making potions, and they are such a fun way to explore safe chemical reactions in a play-based, hands-on way. Preschool Powol Packets has a cool Love Potion, Buggy and Buddy add dishwashing liquid to make their potions extra foamy.
- Baking soda and vinegar are such a winning fizzy combination with this age group. NurtureStore shows how her girls created glittery fizzing reactions in heart shaped molds (perfect for valentines day). Buggy and Buddy shows how you can add coloured vinegar with pipettes to create a beautiful fizzing work of art. Preschool Powol Packets has a sparkly explosions idea too!
- Here’s a cool way to make a DIY musical instrument that only one person can hear! The science of sound from KC Edventures.
- Are your kids curious about what causes frost and condensation? Here’s an easy way to recreate the effect in your own kitchen. From Look, We’re Learning.
- Rhythms of Nature has a Fishing with Magnets idea that looks super fun!
- Here’s a cool water density experiment that uses oil and salt. From Buggy and Buddy.
- Set up a rock exploration centre to encourage a fascination with geology. From Buggy and Buddy.
- Here’s a taste-safe (if unusual) way to explore bubbles! From Preschool Powol Packets.
- Explore how salt affects ice, and how salt absorbs watercolour, at the same time! From Learning and Exploring Through Play.
- This simple colourful celery science demonstration is another way to observe how plants (and vegetables!) transfer their water and nutrients up through the plant. From Look We’re Learning.
- Are there any wild carrot (Queen Anne’s Lace) flowers growing near your place? Fireflies and Mudpies colours them blue, yellow and green. So pretty! NurtureStore does a similar experiment with chrysanthemums. (These are similar to the one we did with gerberas and then again with a variety of white flowers to see which would absorb the colour best.
- You can also observe how different types of seeds grow. NurtureStore shows how you can germinate bean and pea seeds so that you can study the transformation from seed to plant.
- The reaction between milk, dishwashing liquid and food colouring is always a pretty one, but it seems noone knows what to call it! We called ours Swirling Milk. Best Toys for Toddlers calls their version Milk Marbling. Messy Little Monsters call their version Magic Milk Fireworks. Either way, it’s sure to impress!
- The ‘walking water experiment’ is a fun science experiment for this age group, demonstrating both colour mixing and capillary action (or capillarity) as the coloured water moves against gravity up the paper. So cool! Apple Green Cottage show how to do the classic version with glass jars and paper towel. Royal Baloo experiments with hot and cold water and different types of paper.
- Here’s a fun hands-on way to study the phases of the moon with playdough or modeling clay. They point out some cool things to look out for too. From KC Edventures.
- Here’s a fun STEAM (STEM + Art) activity – design your own sun prints! My girls would love this. From Creative Family Fun.
- Another science craft idea – make a tissue paper butterfly, whose wings flap with static electricity. Science fun! From I Heart Crafty Things.
- Can you use rubber bands to explore gravity? How far will they stretch if you hang different things from them? From Planet Smartypants.
- Get creative with some Epsom Salt paintings and see a crystal surprise as they dry! From One Creative Mommy.
- Can you make constellations from marshmallows and toothpicks? (I’d suggest buying a few extra, as some may ‘disappear’ during the construction the process). From Munchkins and
- Make your own galaxy i-spy bottle, and practice learning planet names. From Best Toys 4 Toddlers.
- The Chaos and the Clutter has a simple ice experiment – what makes ice melt fastest? My 3.5 year old happened to spot this activity on my computer, and then wanted to do it straight away. And so we did! Fun!
Want even EVEN more ideas?
You could check out the ideas on our Science for 1-2 Year Olds page – minor variations can make many of these ideas still fun for an older age group. (My kids always like repeating experiments and activities that they did when they were younger – they just tend to play with it in a different way.)
We also have a Science for 5-6 Year Olds page – kids will likely need help from an adult for most of these ideas though.
All these and MORE are pinned on my Fun Science for Kids Pinterest board.