Summertime is a great time to plan special days for preschoolers and children. And, since it’s hot, a day of water and fun just seem to mix. As you plan a day of water fun, make sure you have enough adults to supervise. Never leave a container with water unattended (no matter how shallow it may be). Here are some ideas for your "Get Wet" Day.
Water Painting – Provide buckets of water and large paintbrushes. Kids can paint sidewalks, walls, fences, and even each other with water.
Bubbles – Pour bubble solution into shallow pans. Bend chenille stems into bubble wands. PVC connectors also are great for blowing bubbles; dip one end in the solution and blow through it. For additional fun (and a little danger), use plastic flyswatters with holes; dip the flyswatter in bubble solution and wave it around to create lots of little bubbles. If you want to use conventional bubble wands, pour the bubble solution in a divided vegetable tray and sit on a table or stool with the smaller wands. (Homemade bubble solution: mix 1/2 cup water, 4 tablespoons dishwashing detergent,and 1 1/2 teaspoons corn syrup; store in airtight container.)
Yacht Races – Provide plastic toy boats to floatm play with, and race in a small wading pool or large underbed container. For older kids, provide a variety of materials and challenge them to create their own boats – ones that actually float.
Sponge Toss – Set two buckets or dishpans several feet apart. Fill one dishpan with water and sponges. Challenge kids to toss the filled sponges into the other bucket/dishpan.
Sponge Race – For older kids, use the same set up as the Sponge Toss. But instead of tossing, challenge them to run to the other bucket, squeeze out the sponge into the bucket, run back and resoak the sponge. See how long it takes to transfer the water to the other bucket (and how much actually makes it!).
Car Wash – Provide spray bottles and sponges for kids to wash ridiing toys. Kids may want to ride through a car wash on the riding toys. An adult can spray them as they ride through a designated area; or they could riding the toys through a series of oscillating sprinklers. Older kids could wash (brave) teachers’ cars in the parking lot.
Water Play – Of course, you will want to provide a few small wading pools for kids to splash and play. Provide dishpans for those who want to scoop and pour water. For younger preschoolers, designate a quieter area with dishpans and small amounts of water. Babies and parents can sit by the dishpans and splash in the water or dip tiny feet in the water. Add a little baby shampoo for sudsy water.
Sit in the Shade – Under trees or a canopy, spread blankets and quilts for sitting and dry play with beach balls and other toys.
Snacks – Provide lots of cool water to drink. Watermelon, frozen fruit pops, or snowcones would be refreshing snacks.
What ideas would you add to help your preschoolers and kids "get wet"?