19 Stimulating Spring Activities for Preschoolers That Will Get Them Moving
By Patrick Flavin on 05/02/2022
For many, winter can be a long slog. You and your little ones might be cooped up inside more than you’d like, and that can really drain your ability to come up with fun or creative ways to keep kids engaged and learning.
But never fear—spring is here! While your routine might still feature many of the same activities or a tried-and-true educational TV show, why not take advantage of the spring season and try something new together?
As the snow melts and the trees begin to bud, spring activities for preschoolers can get them up off the couch and embracing the change that comes with a new season.
If you’re up for some fresh, lively activities to keep your little ones busy, look no further! We compiled a handy list of fun crafts, activities and adventures parents and early childhood educators alike can put to good use.
19 Fun spring activities for preschoolers
1. Go on a worm hunt
Anyone with toddlers knows that the world after rainfall can feel like a magical place. Fresh smells, jumping in puddles and those little creatures that have crawled their way to the surface of the earth are sure to capture the attention of your little one. Whether worms are an object of fascination or disgust, your child is sure to be interested. HowStuffWorks® offers various worm-centered activities that can involve observation, interaction or building the worms a new home.
2. Natural herbal modeling dough
Not only does this natural modeling dough from The Imagination Tree smell good, but it’s no-cook and only takes five minutes to make! Mix in rosemary, thyme, sage or whatever other herbs you enjoy. Your kids will have a blast smashing the dough around, and you’ll enjoy smelling the calming herbal aromas that make everything feel more like spring.
3. Coffee filter window flowers
Inner Child Fun offers this fantastic craft to “create your own sunshine” with coffee filter window flowers. The idea is quite simple: Let your preschoolers paint coffee filters with watercolors and once they’ve dried, cut them out into flower shapes and attach them to the windows with a washable glue stick.
4. Make a play garden
Turn a piece of your yard (or already existing garden) into a play garden for your preschooler! Gardening Know How offers tips on how to design the area, which seeds to use and how to plant real flowers with little ones. The concept of planting seeds and watering them will help kids understand the basics of gardening and maybe even create a passion they will carry into adulthood!
5. Flowerpot painting
Another clever seasonal idea from The Imagination Tree—using thick pastel paint and wide brushes, let your preschoolers paint flowerpots. Double the craft with a gardening lesson or simply go along with your normal planting routine and enjoy your extra snazzy pots. These make great Mother’s Day gifts as well!
6. Fingerprint bunnies & chicks
If you’re looking for a simple craft, these fingerprint bunnies and chicks from Sarahndipities should do the trick! Using stamp ink, have your preschoolers press their thumbs onto the ink pad and press them onto thick cardstock. After that, practice drawing bunny ears or chick feet onto the little prints. Add some fun faces and voila!
7. Rain cloud activity
Many of us have vivid memories of hearing thunder signaling an approaching rainfall. The boom of thunder and the sound of rain can bring up all kinds of feelings in toddlers who don’t quite have an understanding of what is going on around them. Little Bins for Little Hands has made a unique activity that can help young ones begin to process what happens during a storm. By using shaving cream, water and some blue dye, this exciting activity can help your child understand what happens when clouds can no longer hold the water they contain.
8. Paper mache Easter egg
The Chocolate Muffin Tree suggests this great idea to create a multicolored egg made out of paper mache. Using balloons, tissue paper and paper mache glue, create beautiful egg-shaped globes that you can use as decorative hangings or as Easter baskets. Feel free to add glitter if you’d like to glam things up a bit.
9. Easy flowerpot cupcakes
The Imagination Tree brings these lovely little inventions to you. Bake cupcakes in miniature flowerpots at the same temperature as usual. Simply extend the baking time by five to ten minutes. Frost them with chocolate frosting to represent dirt. Then stick a green straw into the center of each cupcake to represent the stem. To top it off, place a flower in the top hole of each straw, and you’ve got yourself a garden of cupcakes!
10. Egg planting experiment
Gardening and a carton of eggs may seem like a strange mix, but Sugar, Spice and Glitter designed a really fun spring activity that combines both. After creating a hole just big enough to allow the yoke to drain from the egg (which also makes this a great activity to start around breakfast time), the rest of the project uses the eggshells as a miniature garden to plant seeds. On top of creating this mini garden, your child will also have the opportunity to decorate the egg to their liking. Breakfast, gardening and coloring? Sounds like a win-win-win.
11. Growing beans on cotton balls
This excellent experiment by The Imagination Tree is a great way to teach kids about root systems. Stuff some cotton balls in a glass jar and insert a bean or two on either side. Water the cotton balls until they’re damp, place them near a sunny window and watch their little eyes light up as the beans grow and sprout over time!
12. Paper bag tiara
Happy Hooligans came up with this enchanting springtime craft for preschoolers. Cut and shape a paper bag into a crown that fits around your little one’s head. Then, using a hot glue gun, attach fake flowers and green raffia. Preschoolers can use this style accessory for all sorts of imaginative play or just make a flower child fashion statement.
13. Cherry blossom pompom tree
Play Trains offers one of the more unique tree crafts that you’ll find. When your little one looks outside and sees the world exploding with new life around them, this is a perfect partnering activity to help them recreate the cycle of nature by using pipe cleaners, pom poms and green felt. This is a craft that they are sure to come back to time and time again!
14. Spring-colored sand play
Buggy and Buddy came up with a great idea for a very simple activity that doubles as sensory play for kids. Pour colored sand into trays and place them somewhere where preschoolers can’t make too much of a mess—we recommend outside since it’s spring, after all! Provide materials like straws, yarn or other objects and allow kids to draw pictures in their sand and create textures.
15. Change a flower’s color with transpiration
Science Sparks brings us this classically fun springtime activity: Placing white carnations in colored water. Once you dye the water, cut the stems a bit and place them in the water, you should start seeing results within a few hours! This is the perfect time for a short science lesson about how the water is absorbed and travels up the stem to the flower petals.
16. Frozen chalk paint
Crush up some chalk and sprinkle it into an ice cube tray. PBS Parents® recommends using different colors in each compartment or layering for a multicolored effect. Freeze them and then take them outside to play with on a warm day. The ice cubes will melt in your preschooler’s hand and leave a lovely chalky color on the paper or ground.
17. Broccoli blossom tree
Does your child struggle with eating their broccoli? Well, this activity won’t help, but it may at least offer another use for all that uneaten broccoli you have in your fridge! The Imagination Tree suggests gathering paper, paint and some broccoli to create the outline of a tree that your child can then decorate more fully. Who knows, it may even inspire a greater appreciation for that healthy vegetable.
18. Erupting rainbows
Did that title catch your attention? Teach Them To Fly lays out a really fun St. Patrick’s Day-themed project that involves baking soda, vinegar and various food dyes. When mixing these ingredients together, your toddler will be delighted at what happens next. A fun and unique way to see the colors of the rainbow while celebrating St. Patrick!
19. Toddler-sized egg roll
Plastic eggs are practically everywhere around Easter time—so why not get a little additional utility out of them? Before you pack them away for next year, Toddler Approved has designed a simple and fun activity that is sure to make your little one smile. All you’ll need to start is a larger cardboard box, and then the fun can ensue!
Entertain and educate this spring season!
Spring is a magical season that holds so much excitement for little ones. Take advantage of this small window of time by trying out these springtime activities for preschoolers.
Depending on where you live, these months can still be a bit chilly, and the precipitation can be unpredictable. As spring rolls into summer and the outdoors may become more welcoming, check out “10 Engaging Outdoor Learning Activities for Kids” for more ideas for season-based learning.
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Editor’s note: This article was originally published in 2016. It has since been updated.