This fun, icy activity combines STEM and early literacy. Simply place plastic letter magnets in an ice tray or muffin tin, add water, and freeze overnight. Place the ice-covered letters in a large bin and give the children containers like squirt bottles, pipettes, and other items filled with warm water that they can use to melt the ice. This activity is all about exploration, experimentation, and observation as the children melt the ice to find the letters that are frozen inside.
As they are working, talk with children about what they are observing: Which items melted the ice cubes the fastest? How many ice cubes do you have left? It looks like you were able to unfreeze the purple letter “A”! Children can engage in this activity individually or as a group, depending on how you would like to set it up. These conversations help to encourage children’s learning and sense of discovery, while practicing counting, the alphabet, and color recognition in a playful setting.