Spring is coming which means we can finally get back outdoors and start enjoying the sun again! That also means we can move some of our lessons outdoors and start new new STEM and STEAM studies. I’m planning some great Spring STEM Activities. Some are old favorites we love to repeat each year, others are new and exciting. I think we have a great spring of learning ahead of us! Check out all of our Spring STEM Activity plans!
When I’m making these plans for the kids I try to source activities that work on at least two pillars of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM). With it being spring I found myself really drawn to any activity that was bright and colorful. We’ve had too many months of winter greys! I also tried to incorporate a few activities that would be perfect for celebrating the Spring Equinox.
In total I found over 30 STEM and STEAM activities that I think are perfect for spring.
SPRING STEM ACTIVITIES
One of the first things we need to do to celebrate the Spring Equinox is to create new Wheel of the Year crafts. I recycled ours and my boys are not impressed! This is a simple activity but great for reflecting on the seasons and how they connect together.
Since the Spring Equinox is about balance and being the midpoint between the solstices, I want to do a balancing exercise with the kids. Last fall, after the birds had all moved away we did this with abandoned birds nests. This spring we obviously do not want to touch any birds nests, so instead I will challenge the boys to use tools and scrap materials to design and build a balance scale.
Next we will repeat a quick and easy experiment that demonstrates how the sun in relation to Earth causes the seasons.
One of the great things about spring is getting outside and enjoying nature again. That makes it a great time to learn more about the weather. One of the studies we are going to do this year is wind and with that in mind I have two wind activities. One is a favorite of ours from the past that links into an amazing book, The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind, and involves building a mechanical windmill. Another activity that I think my kids will enjoy is wind powered car races from Handmade Kids Art.
Rainbows are one of the most colorful and exciting ways spring has of announcing its arrival. This makes spring a fantastic time for some STEM rainbow activities. I found so many! But a few of our favorites are this homemade Spectroscope and these two activities – Rainbow Prisms and Make & Paint Rainbows – that involve creating and playing with your own rainbows. We might even make another crystal rainbow, always a popular spring STEM activity for the kids!
Of course rainbows means rain! So to celebrate the rain I’m really looking forward to doing this beautiful rain experiment! I just hope ours turns out as gorgeous. The colors are amazing!
Weathering and erosion are something that is constantly happening all around us, but there is a difference. This activity will explore those differences, then afterwards we can make some erupting volcano slime and explore the fissures created and decide if it’s weathering or erosion that is causing them.
We have plans this year to rebuild and make our Nerf War Battlefield bigger and better! What I love about this activity is how it is teaching my kids life skills, how to be handy and use tools, plus some engineering and physics principles. You can make it as hard or as easy as you wish. Just make sure you have lots of nerf bullets available!
Check out the Nerf video challenge we did using our Nerf War Battlefield. A great way to get kids away from the screen and outdoors!
One of my goals is to help my kids learn to be mindful and in the moment. One of the ways I will practice that with them this spring is by doing a senses challenge with them in nature. Spring is a wonderful time to do this! Well once the farmers cow fields next door completely thaw and settle. They are a little ripe first thing in the spring!
One of the things I love about spring and fall is that we can be outside enjoying sunrises and sunsets. Where we live the sunrises and sunsets in the summer happen in the middle of the night with only a few hours of darkness. So spring and fall are the best time to see our amazing skies! This sky science experiment is a great way to answer the kids questions around why the sky is blue and why we have all the colours at sunrise and sunset.
Of course, the big thing we do every single year is launch Bottle Rockets the moment the weather it good enough! This has turned into an annual tradition. It doesn’t matter how old the kids get, they LOVE this one!
With spring comes the flowers! Oh how we miss those flowers all winter. This year we are going to spend some time learning about the different types of flowers that grow wild around our house and in gardens around our community. We got this idea from Buggy & Buddy and I know my kids will love it!
After that we can make some more gorgeous Circuit Flowers. A stunning STEAM activity.
We always get a lot of deadfall over the winter. Our winters are so harsh, it kills off many trees. Because of this I’m hoping we can find some good tree stumps to do this Dendrochronology experiment exploring tree rings.
Another great activity that gets kids up close and personal with nature is this One Square Foot project. We’ve done this before, but the wonders of nature are always changing, so we will give it a try again this year and see what new critters this spring sends our way!
LEARNING WITH WATER
Spring is a fantastic time for us to repeat our Water Lab experiment. This way we can compare our results and notes from last year. Track any differences and explore why we might get different results in the spring, perhaps we will even get lucky and find some more water bugs this year. While we are at it, we can also do this brilliant Lego project learning the Water Cycle or build our own Water Cycle In a Bag.
LEARNING IN THE GARDEN
Next up I want to take an activity we love from the past, Milk Plastic, and we are going to create some garden markers. Now I’m not 100% sure how well they will hold up in the soil, but after over a year, our clear coated toys are still going strong, so we are going to give it a try!
For more advanced students study the golden ratio in your garden! This is a fantastic way to use nature to study math as it naturally occurs all around us. An excellent applied math opportunity.
Last year we planted strawberries in our garden for the first time. This year I’m thinking of changing things up a bit and turning our strawberry patch into a STEAM challenge with these tips.
Gardeners know that soil is critical to a successful harvest. So this year we are going to kick start our garden season with this soil experiment that examines the impact of different soils on seeds.
And while we are working with seeds, it calls for some great scientific inquiry with these great tips from Go Science Girls.
CREATING SPRING ART
Chromatography projects are fascinating. We spend so much time teaching about mixing colours, but what about seperating colours? Chromatography does that and we have some fantastic options with this Butterfly Chromatography project or Spring Flowers Chromatography Project, both perfect for spring!
A little physics will be a great addition to our art with this Pendulum Painting Activity. Definitely want to do this one outdoors, I have a feeling my kids may get really into this STEAM activity! Things are going to get MESSY!