Mini Monets and Mommies: 10 Kids' Ice Art and Science Activities

Monday, July 25, 2016

10 Kids' Ice Art and Science Activities

It’s summer. It’s hot. And, there’s a major heat wave. It’s 90 + degrees outside, and the kids are (understandably) complaining, “Mommmmmmmmy, it’s hot in here!” This is where kids’ ice art and science activities come into play.

Ice art

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Yes, heading to the pool is totally ideal on one of these sweltering days. The mercury is up and cooling off in a big vat of chlorinated water with a few hundred other completely uncomfortable kids is on the agenda. Or, is it? You’d rather not spend an hour packing the pool bag, getting swim diapers on, slathering on the sunscreen, putting on new swim diapers, putting on more sunscreen and driving to the pool (only to find that the closest parking space is a good 15 minute walk – in the extreme heat – away). But, you still want to do something fun.

Okay. So, get out the ice. Actually, it’s technically not as simple as that. You’ll want to do some prep work beforehand. So, when you hear the weather person on the local news trying to freak just about everyone out about the upcoming dome of high heat that will ultimately blanket your part of the country, start making the ice!

These kids’ ice art and science activities all involve colorful and/or glittery cubes. All you need to do is drip a drop or two of food coloring into an ice cubes tray, add water and freeze. In some cases, you’ll also need to add a sprinkle of glitter or another ingredient (it’s all in the activity list). You can make the ice the night before or really anytime ahead of the activity day. As long as you have room in your freezer, you can stash the cubes for future use.

Kids' activities

Just in case you forget to freeze a tray of colorful water (and when would any of us ever forget anything? – said with heavy sarcasm), you can take a short cut. Toss a few regular clear ice cubes (if you didn’t make them ahead, you can buy a bag of ice at the grocery store or convenience store) in a bowl, add a few drops of food coloring and stir. Don’t use a bowl that you absolutely love. Chances are the food coloring will stain it. Make a few batches, with different colors.

But, if you did happen to pre-freeze your cubes, here are a few fun options to keep cool during a heat wave:

Water and oil ice: Explore what freezes and what doesn’t. When the kiddos are done with the science part, use these to make abstract art prints.

Science exploration

Abstract art: Want to do some more abstract painting? This icy experiment gives the kids just that.

Kids' crafts

Frozen glitter cubes: They’re cold, they’re blue and they’re filled with sparkles. Paint with them, watch them melt or add some glue to catch the glitter.

Sparkle cubes

Red, white and blue chalk cubes: This one goes beyond the basic food coloring and water recipe. Add some crushed chalk for a totally different experience.

Chalk paint

Chalk ice: Another sidewalk chalk plus water plus a freezer art and science activity.

Finger paint

Rainbow race: Make a rainbow of colorful cubes, and then race them on a super-hot day.

Rainbow race

Primary color mix: Take the ice outside, add some colorful water and mix the colors.

Frozen art

Glowing ice: Yes, really. It glows in the dark.

Glow Dark

Striped icy science: Create stripes and layers of colors in ice. How? Read on to find out!

Kids' art

Building blocks: Take these melty blocks outside to build a massive chilly tower (or whatever else your child wants).

Ice blocks




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