If your kids are like mine, getting them outside in the winter is a challenge. This week I pulled out one of our 1000 Hours Outside books which is chalk full of pictures and projects. The kids were happy to thumb through interesting ideas to get them out. We landed on making rainbow ice orbs.
The activity scratched the never ending itch my kids have to do science as they played mixologist- mixing and experimenting with color combos. First, we took some old birthday party balloons we had lying around, most any kind will do, and got to work adding the food dye, water, and tying off. We loaded these babies up in one of our goat watering buckets (because that’s what we had on hand) and set them out during this dreadfully cold winter to freeze overnight. Only it didn’t freeze, because our weather is so so weird this year! The kids woke up immediately asking about the ice orbs, which were not frozen. Parenting fail! It felt almost as bad as when the tooth fairy forgets to visit.
So at 7 am, half dressed, baby on my back, I hauled those water balloons to the chest freeze and loaded them up. The first ones we opened later that afternoon were not frozen. This did not stop my 5 year old and husband from playing a medieval fight scene and using them as shields (I know imaginations are wonderful, but I still can’t quite picture how this one went down). Fast forward to day two, and these were fully frozen! The kids whisked them off to their snow fort their grandfather had built earlier this winter, and they transformed to magical powers of all sorts.
The ice orbs have lots of hours of play left in them, so long as they don’t melt! I highly recommend this project for some outdoor joy and entertainment. Sky is the limit with the beautiful imaginations of children. Including our ever growing nerdy kids who default to potions, magic, and staring at the moon.