Fun in the Sun with Preschooler Water Activities

By Keren Perles

Need some help keeping your super-active four year old entertained throughout the hot summer months? Try some of these outdoor water activities!

Miniature Car Wash

Car Wash Have you ever taken your preschooler to a car wash – especially one run by kids? If he loved the excitement there, try letting her make her own miniature car wash. Let him take any riding toys, trikes, or other vehicles that he owns outside to scrub them down. With a bucket and sponge (or several differently-sized sponges), she’ll have a blast washing her “cars" until they’re squeaky clean.

Water Paint

Most preschoolers love to paint, but indoor paints make such a mess. The solution? Give your preschooler a bucket of water and a small paintbrush, and lead her to a flat outdoor wall or sidewalk. The water will make marks as if he is "painting", but there’s no cleanup involved!

Dry Dry Wet

Do you have several preschoolers in need of a wet game to cool off? Treat them to this watery version of Duck Duck Goose. The water bucket children sit in a circle while one of them walks around with a cup of water in hand, tapping the others’ heads as he says “Dry, dry, dry…" Finally, she pours the cup of water on one child and shouts “WET!"

As in Duck Duck Goose, the “Wet" child tries to tag the other child, who runs around the circle and back into the “Wet" child’s seat. If the first child is tagged, she tries again, If he’s not, the “Wet" child gets a turn.

Relay Races

Relay races in the summer can make children hot and grouchy – but not if you add an a water element. Have them pass a cup of water as a baton, run through a sprinkler, or grab an object from a basin of water before continuing. Better yet, avoid the competitive aspect and just have children run through a watery obstacle course together.

Water Balloon Catch

Water Balloons Water balloons are great activities for all kids – even preschoolers. Fill up several water balloons with your preschooler (remember – filling them up is half the fun, so don’t do it yourself!). If your child can throw and catch a ball relatively easily, challenge her to a game of water balloon catch. Emphasize the fact that part of the fun is the splash that follows if you miss the ball. If you think she’ll be nervous about the balloon bursting, try a practice run, letting the balloon burst intentionally.

Picture Credits

Car Wash:

Water Ballons:

Child with bucket of water: