Forums / Elementary Science / Sink and Float: Kindergarten

Elementary Science

Sink and Float: Kindergarten

Author Post
Megan Sparkman Megan Sparkman 30 Points

Hello! I am a pre-service teacher, and I am gearing up for a lesson on sink and float, and making tin-foil boats! Can anyone share on this? 

Alfredo Uriegas Alfredo Uriegas 300 Points

Make different shapes made out of foil (sphere, triangle, square, etc,) and students can test if those sink or float. Then move on to making the boat and make them think and make predictions why the boat floats.

Zoe Fritz Zoe Fritz 620 Points

Hi Megan, I have done some research on different activities that you could do with your kindergarteners. One of the lessons had the students split up into groups and test different items to see if they would sink or float. In the link provided below it also mentions some activities that could be independent work and also activities you can do to extend the lesson. Here is the link: This link has some great attachments that might be helpful to guide your students. Here is the link:file:///Users/zoe/Downloads/K-Float%20the%20Boat.pdf Another thing that might be helpful is to show them a video to start off the lesson. Here are a couple that I found that could introduce the lesson for you. AND Hope this is helpful and that the lesson goes well!

Briyanna Alexander Briyanna Alexander 765 Points

I am a student teacher for first grade and we have done a sink and float activity. Duirng October we did the activity with pumpkins and we had the students guess whether the pumpkins would sink or float. We also had them estimate how many lines were on the pumpkin. The students really enjoyed being so hands on, which I have learned tends to keep them engaged.

Rebecca Brockman Rebecca Brockman 885 Points

Will be great with the kiddos. I would even let them use popsicle sticks and paper to create a sail. This way they can all make them unique.

Kelsie Dartayet Kelsie Dartayet 1515 Points

Depending on how much time you have for your lesson, after the students are done using their tin-foil boats you could have them test different objects around the classroom and see if they sink or float. For example a pencil eraser, Starburst candy, crayon, dice, and marshmallow.

Alyssa Tannous Alyssa Tannous 980 Points

I have done this as well and the students had a lot of fun with the experiment.

Julie Lim Julie Lim 555 Points

Hello! If I were to do this lesson, I would get lots of fun different objects for the students to play around with and even try out objects to see which floats and which sinks. It would be a nicer activity to include unexpected items like different fruits or erasers that contain different sizes. I have found a website that would be great for you to use with how to begin this activity with a book, assess with other different objects to see if they have gotten the idea of sink and float concepts. I hope you could teach a successful lesson! I have used this resource to help me out with the idea!

Chandni Thakkar Chandni Thakkar 945 Points

Hello, I am a pre-service teacher as well and I did this lab as our first lab this year with my third grade students.I agree with Julie in the sense that you should do other objects. To add structure to this and not make it totally chaotic I gave everyone a number that corresponded with an object. Each member of the group had an object to test and it worked out well. Additionally, as my engage portion I demonstrated an orange with the peel and an orange without the peel and the results were astonishing for my students!

Alyson Whitmore Alyson Whitmore 555 Points

Hello, I'm also a pre-service teacher, and I've seen this activity done in another kindergarten classroom. The students got into groups, and each group had a pile of objects and a bucket of water. They would predict whether they thought each item would float or not before testing it, and talk to the group about it. It was really gratifying for students to find out that they guessed correctly, and it's a nice moment to get young students collaborating scientifically. They also did an exercise at the beginning of class where they were asked, "Do you float?" They had to show how they would float in the pool, and how they would sink in the pool, on the carpet. They greatly enjoyed that. Best of luck!

Georgina Pozzoli Georgina Pozzoli 2670 Points

Hello, I think it would be awesome to have them first predict what would happen, if they would sink or float. I would then have a few different materials to make the boats from. At least 2 or 3, to let them see how different materials may or may not affect the end result. I think the most important aspect of teaching this is to get the students thinking and being hands on. Let them predict and construct the boats, let them tell you what they think will happen. Since this is kindergarten you can also use colorful materials to build the boats, I'm sure this would attract their attention.

Shelby Royer Shelby Royer 980 Points

We gathered random items such as paper clips, straws, marble, eraser, etc. and beforehand the students would predict what would sink and what would float. I then showed a video from high school and I was in a cardboard box boat race. Students were amazed that the boat didn't float.

Farah Aziz Farah Aziz 1035 Points

I have also conducted a similar experiment in my fourth grade classroom. The students were given a tub of water with a foil piece floating on top and had to predict what would happen to each item when it was placed on top of the foil, Once the students placed the objects on the foil, they had to write their observations. They had to complete three trials for the various objects and students reported that sometimes the object floated and other times it sunk even though it was the same object. This allowed the class to have a discussion as to how that was possible and gave them a better understanding of the concepts behind sinking and floating.

Post Reply

Forum content is subject to the same rules as NSTA List Serves. Rules and disclaimers