Exploring science is a wonderful way for children to develop problem-solving, observation, and critical-thinking skills. And where better to do this than outside in the sun? In fact, a great topic to explore is the sun itself! Since ancient times, people have been enchanted by the qualities of sunlight, rainbows, and shadows and your children will be too! Keep these tips in mind as children have fun in the sun.
Provide hands-on experiences with complex concept. Give children translucent and opaque materials to explore in the sun so they can see that some items make shadows and others don't.
Explore the Importance of the sun. Engage in long-term projects that demonstrate that the sun is crucial for growing things. Grow bean plants from seeds, placing some in the sun and others in the shade. What happens?
Keep children safe in the sun. Stay indoors or in the shade at the hottest times of day. To help prevent dehydration, make plenty of fluids available whenever children are outside in hot weather. Encourage parents to provide hats and loose-fitting, light-colored clothing to keep cool.
This article originally appeared in the May, 1998 issue of Early Childhood Today.