preschoolers in a classroom

It’s never too early to start working on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math) concepts with children. STEM activities teach kids problem-solving skills, how to gather and evaluate evidence, decision-making skills, and information processing…all skills that will help them snag one of the millions of STEM-related jobs out there when they finish their education. In fact, children ages 3-5 years are in their prime for learning and retaining new information, and the hands-on experience that STEM activities provide are the perfect method for these budding young minds. In this post, we’ll go over seven of our favorite STEM activities for preschoolers.

1. Build Anything!

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of STEM-related activities that involve building and constructing using various materials. LEGOs, marshmallows, wood blocks, ice, and even sugar cubes can be transformed into a STEM project to stimulate the minds of eager students. Here are a few of our favorite STEM building activities to try:

  • Build a bridge and see how much weight it can support
  • Build a catapult and see how far it can launch an item
  • See who can build the sturdiest building out of marshmallows and toothpicks
  • See who can build the strongest igloo using sugar cubes and “cement” make of powdered sugar and water
  • Build pyramids from egg cartons
  • Build a plastic cup tower
  • Build a boat out of an apple
  • Build things out of magnet tiles

2. Race Time

Have some toy cars on hand? Then it’s race time! Have students find different items they can use for ramps, then see which cars go the fastest down different ramps, compare ramps at different inclines, add obstacles to the ramps…the possibilities are endless!

3. Sprout a Plant

Teach preschoolers about the plant life cycle with an easy seed germination project. Simply wrap seeds in a damp paper towel, then keep them in a plastic container with the lid slightly ajar for a soilless sprouting activity. You can also fill small cups with moist potting soil and place the seeds inside, then put the cups on a windowsill for a more traditional activity. Level up this activity by using half of an egg shell instead of a cup, then once the seeds sprout plant the entire egg shell in the ground. Students will love seeing their little seeds sprout, and you can either let them take them home or plant them in a class garden that the students can care for and harvest!

4. Dissect a Flower

All young kids seem to like taking things apart, so make it a learning experience by having them dissect a flower bloom. Talk about the different parts of the flower, what each part does, and how flowers contribute to the entire food cycle. Dissect multiple types of flowers and plants to show them that while they all have some of the same parts, different plants can have different parts as well.

5. Make it Rain

This is an easy STEM activity to introduce students to the water cycle. Give each student a small jar filled about ¾ of the way up with cool water. Have students add a shaving cream cloud to the top of the water in their jar. Once everyone has a cloud, have students fill their cloud up with “rain” by dropping drops of colored water on the shaving cream using a pipette (this also introduces them to basic science equipment). Keep adding drops of colored water to the shaving cream cloud until the cloud begins to “rain” colors down into the water below. Not only will students learn more about how their world works, but they’ll enjoy the pretty show as well.

6. Float or Sink?

This one is always a crowd favorite! Simply fill a bucket about ¾ of the way up with water (you can also fill up a sink or give students their own cups to fill up). Have a variety of objects on hand for students to guess whether or not they will float. Packing peanuts, balls, marbles, eggs, slime, plants and flowers, seeds, and building blocks are all great items to try out. Once the students have made their guess, drop the item into the water and see what happens. Students may be surprised at which items float and which ones sink, and it’s a great introductory lesson in buoyancy and the properties of water.

7. Sound Eggs

Introduce the concepts of sound with this fun STEM activity - simply fill some plastic eggs with different items, close them up, and label each one so you know what is inside. Let the students shake each egg and guess what they think is making the noise. Rice, beads, marbles, blocks, and even paper make great materials to use for this activity.

Fun Rewards for STEM Participation

There’s no doubt that your preschool students will have a blast with these engaging STEM activities! Reward their efforts and participation in STEM-related tasks with trendy toys, school supplies, and more from GEDDES, a leading supplier of everything schools need to make learning fun. Check out our digital catalogs, browse our online store, or contact us at 888-431-1722 to learn more about our selections.