This activity is embarrassingly simple. It would be a great activity to do when there are multiple children around, but since this was thought up spur-of-the-moment, we made do with just Big Brother.
Here’s what you’ll need: 2 large bowls, a sponge (or two for multiple children), and some water.
If you have an older preschooler, make a table on a piece of scrap paper like the one shown below. This will add a cognitive dimension to this activity as well.
1. Measure out cups of water…however many will fit in your bowl to make it 1/2 to 3/4 full.
2. Take all of your materials outside and place the two bowls a distance apart.
3. Have your child soak the sponge in the water and run to the other bowl as fast as he can.
4. Then, encourage him to squeeze the water out of the sponge (fine motor practice as well).
5. After all the water is gone from the first bowl, measure the water left in the second bowl. Record it onto your table.
6. Talk to your child about why there wasn’t as much in the second bowl (it dripped while running, some was soaked into the sponge, etc). This helps develop a sense of cause-and-effect. Also talk about which number is more and which is less.
This activity was such a hit for Big Brother. He kept asking if we could do it again! He wasn’t developmentally able to understand the discussion on numbers, but we still tried!