Last Updated on October 8, 2023 by ellen
Check out these fun things to do with water at home. From fun water games to water table ideas, you can keep kids busy with these water games.
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Fun Things to Do With Water
While filling up the kiddie pool can be loads of fun on its own, there are many outdoor water games and water play ideas you can do with the kids at home.
Water play is not only a delightful way to beat the heat, but also a versatile learning tool that opens up a world of discovery for children. It provides an opportunity to develop fine motor skills, explore scientific concepts such as floatation and evaporation, and stimulate sensory experiences. By splashing, pouring, and stirring, kids can master hand-eye coordination and engage in imaginative play, all while staying cool and hydrated.
Take your garden hose, buckets, and water balloons, and get ready to dive into a world of fun. Whether it’s a sunny weekend or an idle afternoon, these water games are the perfect way to spend quality time with your little ones. Easy to set up and clean up, they offer endless entertainment and learning opportunities. Let the water games begin!
Examples of outdoor water fun for kids
Water Balloons: Filled with water, these balloon toys can be used for a fun-filled toss or a playful fight. The unexpected burst of water is refreshing and exciting in a water balloon fight.
Water Guns: Let your kids engage in a friendly water gun battle. Squirt guns are perfect for cooling off and encouraging active play during the warmer months.
Swimming Pool: A full-size pool is not just for swimming but can also be used for pool games like Marco Polo, pool volleyball, or underwater treasure hunts. Learn how to prepare your child for swimming lessons.
Pool Noodles: These long, hollow foam cylinders can be used for floatation, water fights, or as part of a pool obstacle course. They’re versatile and safe for kids to play with.
Water Wall: A DIY project using recycled materials like pool noodles to create a wall that guides water through various paths. It’s a fun way to teach children about gravity and water flow.
Plastic Kiddie Pool: A small, shallow pool perfect for younger children to splash and play in. It can be used for a variety of games or just as a way to cool off.
Water Obstacle Course: Set up a sequence of challenges involving water, such as jumping over sprinklers or popping water balloons. It’s a fun and energetic water game that promotes physical activity.
Water Balloon Piñatas: Hang filled water balloons and let children take turns trying to burst them like a piñata. It’s a wet, wild, and fun spin on a classic party game.
What can you do with water for fun?
For little ones, water painting can be a lot of fun! All you need is a bucket of water and some paintbrushes. Take them outside and let the kids “paint” the pavement. The best part? There’s no mess to clean up!
Ice Cube Play
This is a simple yet exciting game for young kids. Fill an ice cube tray with water, add a drop of food coloring to each cube, and freeze. Once frozen, these colorful ice cubes make for a fun, sensory play experience. Kids can watch the colors melt and mix together, creating new shades!
Turn an old soda bottle into a homemade sprinkler. Poke holes in the bottle, attach it to the garden hose, and voila! You’ve got a fun, water sprinkle system. Kids will love running through the water and cooling off during hot summer days. It’s simple, fun, and perfect for young kids.
What can kids make with water?
Water Balloon Toss
A classic summer game that kids love. Fill up water balloons with water and have the children toss them back and forth. The goal is to not let the balloon pop!
Water Chalk Art
With just some water, brushes and chalk, kids can create beautiful designs on the sidewalk. They can dip the chalk in water for more vibrant colors.
Soap Boat Races
For this activity, you’ll need a reusable water bottle cut in half, a bar of soap, and a straw. Simply place the soap at one end of the bottle half, blow through the straw at the other end and watch the soap glide across the water.
Float or Sink Game
This game is perfect for teaching kids about buoyancy. Provide an array of objects and ask them to predict which ones will float or sink when placed in water.
DIY Bubble Solution
Mix together water, dish soap, and a little bit of sugar to create a homemade bubble solution. Use a store-bought wand or even a homemade one from a wire hanger to blow huge bubbles. Kids will love chasing and popping them! So much fun!
Water sensory bin
A water sensory bin is an excellent tool to stimulate a child’s senses and nurture their curiosity. To make your own, all you need is a large, shallow container, water, and a selection of items to enhance the sensory experience.
You can choose items like plastic toys, pebbles, leaves, or even food coloring to create interesting visual effects. The idea is to encourage children to engage with the bin, explore the different objects, and observe how they interact with water. This is a simple, yet effective way of promoting fine motor skills, cognitive development, and imaginative play in children.
Cheap pool games
Duck Race: The idea of this game is to get the rubber ducks from one side of the pool to the other using only a water pistol. We like these.
Fishing Game: Purchase some small, plastic fish and a net, then let your kids go ‘fishing’ in their pool. This has everything you need.
Ball Race: Each child gets a beach ball and the aim of the game is to push it across the pool using only their nose.
Treasure Hunt: Throw a number of waterproof items into the pool and let the kids dive in to find them.
How to make a kiddie pool fun
Tug of War
In this classic game, all you need is a rope. A group of children can grab one end of the rope and try to pull the other group into the pool. It’s a fun, competitive game that encourages teamwork.
Throw some waterproof toys into the kiddie pool and let the little ones “fish” them out using small nets. It’s a simple and fun way for them to improve their coordination.
Pool Tea Party
Kids love to imitate grown-ups. Set up a pretend tea party right in the kiddie pool. Use plastic cups and saucers, and let the kids enjoy their imaginary afternoon tea while staying cool.
Water tables for toddlers
Water play is an enjoyable and beneficial activity for children. It offers a fun way to cool down while also providing numerous developmental benefits. This is the water table we have.
First, it enhances motor skills as children pour, scoop, and stir water. Second, it encourages imagination and creativity, as water can be anything in the world of pretend play.
Third, it promotes science learning by offering opportunities to explore concepts like flow and absorption. Fourth, it supports social skills as children play and negotiate roles together.
Lastly, it contributes to emotional well-being, as the sensory experience of water play can be calming and therapeutic. In a nutshell, water play boosts the physical, cognitive, and emotional development of children, making it a worthwhile addition to their play routine.
Learn how to clean a water table when the season is done.
Indoor Water Activities for Kids
Creating a soothing atmosphere at home with water can be easy and fun. Here are a few simple ideas to make indoor water play exciting for your little ones:
Aquarium in a Jar: Fill a clear jar with water, add some food coloring, glitter, and plastic sea creatures to create your own mini aquarium. Kids can watch as the glitter swirls like a magical underwater snowstorm.
Indoor Rain: Set up a waterproof tarp or shower curtain on the floor and hang a colander filled with water above it. Kids can sit underneath and experience the sensation of rain indoors.
Water Sensory Bins: Fill a plastic bin with water and add toys of different textures and sizes. This will provide a fun sensory experience for the kids.
Bath Time Fun: Make bath time more exciting by adding bath bombs with hidden toys inside or water-friendly paint for the kids to create their own bath tub art. Check out these preschool bath activities.
Indoor Boat Races: Make small boats using recycled materials and race them in a tub of water. Kids can blow on the sails to make the boats move.
DIY Indoor Fountain: Use a small water pump to create a homemade fountain. Kids can help design the fountain and watch as the water cascades down.
Water Xylophone: Fill different glasses with varying levels of water and tap them gently with a spoon. Each glass will make a different sound, creating a fun, musical experience.
Ice Sculptures: Freeze water in different shaped containers and let kids build their own ice sculptures. This activity also helps them learn about the properties of water and ice.
Remember, always supervise children when they are playing with water to ensure their safety.
Water cycle STEM for kids
The water cycle is a fascinating natural process that we can explain simply for kids. First, the Sun heats up water from oceans, lakes, and rivers, which turns into vapor, and this process is called evaporation.
Next, the water vapor goes up into the sky and cools down to form clouds, a process called condensation. When the clouds get too heavy, the water falls back down to the earth as rain, sleet, or snow. This is known as precipitation.
Once the water is back on earth, it can be taken up by plants, go back into bodies of water, or sink into the earth to become groundwater. Then the cycle begins all over again! Understanding the water cycle helps us learn more about our planet and how nature works.
Educational water activities for kids
There are lots of water games for kids. Many are educational activities for younger kids that are perfect for a hot day. However, you can have so much fun with water inside as well.
Fishing for Numbers
This is a fun math game where kids “fish” for numbers. Write numbers on small, waterproof toys and throw them into the pool. Give your kids a fishing net and ask them to fish out specific numbers, helping them to recognize and learn numbers.
Rain in a Jar Science Activity
A transparent jar, water, shaving foam, and food coloring are all you need for this activity. Fill the jar with water, top it with a layer of shaving foam (clouds), and add drops of food coloring.
Children will marvel as the “rain” descends from the clouds, demonstrating the process of precipitation in the water cycle.
Frozen Sand Sensory Bin
Freeze colored sand in different containers to create an interesting sensory experience for your kids. Children get to explore the different textures as the sand gradually thaws.
Ice Transfer Fine Motor Activity
This activity requires ice cubes, two bowls, and a pair of tongs. Ask your child to transfer ice cubes from one bowl to another using the tongs. This aids in developing fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.
Spoon and Water Balloon Race
Have a race where participants must carry a water balloon on a spoon to the finish line. This activity is not just fun, but also enhances balance and concentration in children. We use these water balloons. Check out these water balloon games.
Introduce simple words to your kids using water play. Write easy words on floating toys. Children can fish out these toys and read the words, thus improving their vocabulary and reading skills.
What do you need for water fun?
In conclusion, water-based activities provide a versatile platform for children to learn, grow, and have fun. Through these simple yet engaging activities, children can explore various scientific concepts, improve their motor skills, and boost their creativity.
Furthermore, these water games enhance their understanding of the world around them while providing endless hours of indoor and outdoor excitement. Always remember, water is not only essential for life but also an incredible tool for learning and fun. So, get ready, dive in and enjoy the splash of knowledge and joy.
Ellen is a of a 25-year-old son and 30-year-old daughter. She is Grandma to one adorable toddler. In what little spare time she has, she loves to read, watch movies, check out the latest toys, and play games.