So right now in preschool we are learning about Animals in Winter.....I don't know why I always have so much fun with this theme!! Anyway, today for a science experiment, we discovered what it would feel like to be a Polar Bear swimming in the icy water (kind of). First, have each child put their bare hands in a bowl of freezing ice water. We like to count and see how long they can hold it in there (great counting practice). Every class I always get at least a couple of brave souls who leave their hand in there as long as they possibly can - I always stop them at 30!! Who knows how long they would actually leave it in there - crazy kids!!
Then, take a rubber glove and have one child make a fist and have them put there hand in the glove (obviously you aren't going to have them put their fingers in the finger places :). I like to wear a rubber glove also, basically for less clean up.
and cover that child's hand with shortening.
I just plop it on until the whole fist is covered....I use quite a bit. I take my glove off and then I cover the child's fat covered hand with plastic wrap (this is for easier clean up also).
Now just have the child put their hand in the icy water now.......the kids think it is the coolest thing that they now can't feel the icy cold water. I don't count this time because we would be there all day.....I just let them see how a Polar Bear (or a penguin or a seal or any other freezing Arctic animal) might feel. Once you are done with the first child, I carefully slip the fat covered glove off and have the next child slip in their fist. It works pretty smoothly.You can do this as a large group, small group, or even work it in to your choice centers at the messy table or something for less down time for the kids. We did it as a group at the end of the day. How fun!! Now.....go experiment!!