Preschoolers love a chance to play in the snow.

How to Teach Preschoolers About Precipitation

by Sara Ipatenco

Stomping in rain puddles, watching hail ping off the driveway and making snow angels are just some of the awesome activities made possible by precipitation. Preschoolers love interacting with the outdoors, and learning about the weather can be quite captivating. Teach your child about the different types of precipitation with a few hands-on activities that bring him a little closer to Mother Nature.

1 Do an art project. Set out tempera paints, washable of course, and let your preschooler paint pictures of rain, snow and hail. Draw and cut out pictures of raindrops or snowflakes and let your child decorate them with sequins, glitter, beads and other craft supplies. As she's decorating, tell her a bit about each kind of precipitation. Once the creations are dry, hang them from the ceiling in your house as an eye-catching reminder.

2 Read all about it. Cuddle up and teach your child more about precipitation with engaging picture books like "Cloudette" by Tom Lichtenheld, a short tale about a little cloud that longs to be important, until she realizes that filling with rain and watering the earth is a noble job. Another book worth a look is "Snowflake Bentley" by Jacqueline Briggs Martin, which includes colorful illustrations that show your child that each snowflake is different.

3 Watch the weather. When precipitation starts to come down in your area, take time to just sit still and let your child watch weather in action. If there's no lightning, go outside and let your preschooler feel the raindrops. Show him how to catch snowflakes on his tongue. Watch it hail from the safety of an inside window and then collect a few pieces to examine. Ask your little meteorologist what makes each kind of precipitation different.

4 Play dress-up. Gather a variety of weather-appropriate clothes, such as raincoats, boots, mittens, hats, snowsuits and umbrellas. Give your preschooler an example of precipitation and have her dress up as if she were going outside in that kind of weather. Ask her why each item would be important for that type of precipitation.

Items you will need

  • Art supplies
  • Children's books about weather
  • Clothes for different kinds of weather

Tip

  • Go online to the National Weather Service or other weather sites and let your child watch precipitation in action. Many news channels also stream weather live, which gives your kiddo a chance to see it snowing, raining or hailing when these types of precipitation aren't in the forecast where you live.

References

  • National Weather Service: Weather Education
  • Weather: Ready-To-Go Activities, Games, Literature Selections, Poetry and Everything You Need for a Complete Theme Unit; Ann Flagg
  • Cloudette; Tom Lichtenheld
  • Snowflake Bentley; Jacqueline Briggs Martin

Photo Credits

  • Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images