Demonstrate the Water Cycle and let the kids get creative by making an easy 3D model, a hands-on water cycle project!
Start the lesson by explaining the following concepts:
- The Sun provides energy and heats the surface of the sea.
- Warm water turns into vapour.
- The water vapour changes into clouds.
- Rain falls onto the ground and fills rivers that flow into the sea.
- The cycle repeats itself.
You will need:
- Hardboard (I used 30 x 50cm piece)
- Egg cartons for paper maché
- Wood glue
- Wooden skewers
- Craft sticks
- Blue crinkle paper (optional)
- Polystyrene ball
- Cotton wool
- Clear round plastic container with lid
Tear your egg cartons into small pieces and soak in water for a few hours. Draw a rough idea on the back of the hardboard of the layout of the sea, rivers, mountain, landscape and dam. (The rougher surface on the back would give more “grip” to the paper maché.)
Dilute the wood glue, 2 parts glue to 1 part water. Paint a layer of glue on the sea, river and dam areas and glue the crinkle paper. (you can paint these areas blue if you do not want to use paper but the paper gives a great texture.)
Mix some of your glue solutions into the wet carton pieces taking care to work it through thoroughly. Shape the landscape and mountain. Place the wooden skewers into the paper maché while still wet. Let your landscape dry properly. This might take anything from a few hours to a few days. In meantime, you can paint and label the craft sticks and paint the polystyrene ball.
Paint the landscape and mountains in different shades of green, brown and grey. Add a few white streaks on the sea area to represent waves and you can use a bit of sand for texture on the beach area. Add a few toy trees and animals to the “farm” area or a boat in the sea area if you like.
Place the plastic container (dam) in place, add a few drops of water and close. Leave the model in the sun for half an hour to an hour to see how the water had evaporated and condensation occurred.
Glue the labelled craft sticks onto the wooden skewers (use pegs to keep in place until the glue is dry). Place the sun and use cotton wool to represent the clouds.
Such a creative way to learn about the water cycle with kids of all ages! PS: Have you seen this Season Wheel Craft?