Have fun with the hilarious STEM picture book “11 Experiments That Failed” by Jenny Offill. Read the book and enjoy some easy science activities for preschoolers. Includes slime, baking soda/vinegar activities, and some experiments with water. It is a great way to make learning fun.
Early learners love combining education and reading and this is a great way to accomplish that!
11 Experiments That Failed: Science Activities For Preschoolers
Young children are natural scientists. They have a natural curiosity and life is all one big investigation. Have you ever wondered why a baby puts everything in its mouth? They are learning about taste, texture, and smell. My dad used to refer to my kid’s mouths as the “all-purpose laboratory.” As they get older they try dropping food from their high chair, knocking down a stack of bricks and experimenting with dog poop.
I think these early experiments set preschoolers up to love science. My boys all loved trying simple experiments. I loved seeing their expressions of awe. Especially when we tried vinegar and baking soda. It never fails to impress.
This month I chose a book that celebrates scientific curiosity in young children. 11 Experiments That Failed by Jenny Offill is one of the funniest STEM (Science, technology, engineering, and math) picture books I have ever read.
The book follows as she tries to be a curious young scientist and her wacky experiments. Here are some of her questions:
- Can a kid make it through the winter eating only snow and ketchup?
- Do dogs like to be covered in glitter?
And my personal favorite:
- Is there a way to make stinky cheese smell better?
INTRODUCING PRESCHOOLERS TO SCIENCE
I love this book for its humor. But the teacher in me appreciates the way it demonstrates the scientific method. Each experiment includes a
- List of materials
- Details of the experiment
The conclusion is the funniest part of the book. I love that kids are learning while they are laughing. Kids love this book and it is fun to read. At our library, the kids understood that the book is for fun. To my knowledge, nobody tried to reproduce any of the experiments. It is a great way to introduce preschoolers to science.
I just want to point out that this book does not read like a story. It is set up as a lab book and includes step-by-step diagrams and minimal text. The illustrations are quite unique. They consist of mixed media collages. These include notebook sketches, textbook diagrams; graphs ink drawings, and photographs.
Curious kids will relate to the young woman in the book, as will the parents and that just adds to the charm of the book.
AS YOU READ THE STORY
If you have been following these book activity posts, you know what I’m going to say. Take your time with this book! Enjoy the humor and let your children explore the illustrations.
Each page starts with a question. Invite your children to guess what the answer will be. Ask older children
- What could we do to answer this question?
- What would we need?
SING A SONG
Here is a fun song about five mad scientists
Next up is the Science Song
Finally, we have Think Like a Scientist. Preschoolers won’t really understand the lyrics, but it is catchy and who knows one day the message may all click.
HAVE A SNACK- EAT AN EXPERIMENT
Here are some fun kitchen experiments you can also eat.
TRY THESE SCIENCE ACTIVITIES FOR PRESCHOOLERS
Enjoying some simple science experiments is the perfect activity to pair with this book. The following experiments were designed just for preschoolers. They don’t involve ketchup and won’t fail! I promise!
- Crazy Scientist Science Lab
- Easy Rainbow Skittles Science Experiment
- Baking Soda Volcano Experiment
- Air Pressure Balloon Science
- Caterpillar Butterfly Life Cycle Activity
- Baking Soda and Vinegar Reaction
- Walking Water Experiments
- Lava Lamp Experiment
- 60 Very Simple Science Activities (using stuff you already have)
Have you ever done any science activities for preschoolers? What experiments did you do?
More preschool activities to check out: