Spring has sprung! Should you sit indoors with your preschooler? Definitely not! Take advantage of the outdoor classroom with these 15 outdoor spring learning activities for preschoolers.
15 Preschool Spring Activities to Do Outside
Over the winter, you and your preschooler have huddled inside. Now that spring is here, you’re both ready to be outside. You don’t need to relegate outdoor activities for free time. The great outdoors is a fabulous place to do your preschool activities. Check out this list of 15 amazing and educational outdoor spring activities for preschool!
Plant a Garden
Watching a plant grow from seed is 100% magic. Preschoolers can learn all about the life cycle of various plants by seeing them happen in real life. Pick plants that are especially easy for kids to grow like sunflowers, nasturtiums, sweet peas, salad greens, radishes, herbs, or beans. Is your spring too prone to frost to plant a garden just yet? Start the seeds inside by filling old eggshells with potting mix and keeping them in the egg carton. You can then transplant them outdoors when the weather warms.
Seek and Find Textures
Encourage exploration and observation by going on a seek-and-find adventure where you spot textures. Can your preschooler find something smooth (like a stone), soft (like moss), rough (like tree bark), jagged (like the edge of a toothed leaf), prickly (like a pine needle), slimy (like a snail trail) or gritty (like sand)?
Rainbows are doubly wonderful: Not only are they beautiful, but you can use them to teach preschoolers about colors. Make your own rainbows by using the mist setting on your sprayer, or experiment with glass prisms on a sunny day to cast rainbows on the sidewalk. Who knows? You may even spot a rainbow in real life with all those April showers!
Dig for Worms
The humble worm is a miracle worker. Thanks to worms, decaying plant and animal matter is changed into nutrient-rich soil. Teach your preschooler about the worm, and dig to find him in his native habitat!
Experience Flower Power
When flowers bloom, you have the perfect opportunity to learn about them in the outdoor classroom. How do they attract pollinators? What colors, sizes, and shapes are they? What do they smell like? You can even take them apart to see the parts of a flower or press them between two sticky sheets of contact paper.
Explore a Pond
Your local pond is brimming with activity. Put on some boots and explore! Look for frog spawn and tadpoles, fish, ducks, turtles, lilypads, water bugs, and birds. You can bring a bucket and a butterfly net for interactive learning.
Make a Rain Gauge
How much rain are you getting with those spring showers? Make a simple rain gauge with a smooth-sided, wide-mouth mason jar. Draw markings on the side of the jar to show inches. Check the rain gauge after each rainy day to see how much rain you got.
Bubbles are mesmerizing, and your preschooler will love blowing, chasing, and popping bubbles. For extra science fun, make your own bubble liquid. Which recipe works best? You can also experiment with different types of bubble wands.
Build a Compost Bin
Composting is a great way to reduce your trash and turn leftover plant matter into food for your garden. It also gives preschoolers an up close and personal look at the process of decomposition. Building a compost bin is pretty simple: all you need is a plastic container with a lid (like an old kitty litter box). Drill holes in the sides and bottom of the bin to allow air to pass in and out. You can fill it with newspaper, vegetable and fruit scraps, dry leaves, coffee grounds, and rinsed eggshells. Add a layer of soil and worms. Keep the compost moist and stir it around periodically. When the mixture is brown and crumbly, it is ready to scoop out onto your garden plants.
Go on a Color Scavenger Hunt
One of our favorite outdoor spring learning activities is to go on a color hunt! Find all the colors of the rainbow outdoors. Write the names of the colors on index cards (use a crayon in the corresponding color) and start collecting. Group your items together by color for a show and tell at the end of the game.
A simple butterfly net and a bug catch-and-release container are two of the best investments for outdoor spring activities. Preschoolers will love catching bugs and observing their behavior.
Fly a Kite
Learn about the power of the wind (you can’t see it, but you can feel it) by making a windsock or flying a kite.
Draw with Sidewalk Chalk
Sure, you can learn your letters, numbers, and shapes inside, but you can learn them outside, too! Draw your lesson on the sidewalk. Play hopscotch (number and shape recognition) and write the letter of the day on your front step (then jump on it 10 times). Add some gross motor activity to your lessons!
Build a Bird Feeder
You can learn a lot about birds by watching them. Build a simple birdfeeder (out of a milk carton or from a kit) and hang it in your yard.
Play with a Sand and Water Table
Children learn by exploring, and the tactile sensation of sand and water makes exploration all the more fun. Fill your sandbox or water table with funnels, measuring cups, small buckets, and toy dump trucks.
Outdoor Preschool Spring Learning Activities
Take advantage of the warmer temperatures and step outside for your preschool lessons. There is so much to learn from the great outdoors!