This post may contain affiliate links. Read the full disclosure
Water play activities for preschoolers are a great choice for summer and warmer weather. Water is the perfect sensory play option for helping young children learn and the opportunities to incorporate water into play are endless.
- Classic board games to play as a family
- Non-toy gift ideas for kids
- Active toy ideas for children
- Tech-free family fun
We have always enjoyed using water play activities for toddlers when our girls were younger, but now they are a bit older, it opens up so many new and exciting possibilities! Water play activities for preschoolers are endless, limited only to your imagination and what props you have on hand!
Our girls have always loved their water play table and shell pool, however sometimes it is fun to do something a little different. This is a great way to boost their creativity. Plus it keeps them cool during summer! This is a must when living in a hot climate like ours!
SUPER FUN WATER PLAY ACTIVITIES FOR PRESCHOOLERS
These activities are also a great way to occupy and entertain children during school holidays, with the bonus of learning and exercise included with many of the water play activities included in this collection!
Many of these activities are also suited to older kids who are already school-aged. Some may even appeal to teens and adults too, so the whole family can get involved and have some water fun! Plus they can help get kids more active too!
Benefits of Water Play For Preschool Aged Children
Many water play activities are excellent for the development of fine motor skills in preschool-aged children, through the continual use of their fingers and hands as they engage in different activities.
It is also a fantastic way to encourage problem-solving and learning through play. Kids can explore the way water interacts with different toys and substances, or they can observe the movement and impact water has as they attempt to manipulate it. Water is a perfect sensory activity for kids!
Water play is a fantastic way to cool down and learn through play during the warmer months. Bring on some summer holiday learning fun!
Indoor Water Play Activities For Preschoolers
Colour Changing Water Play
It’s pretty magical to see how colours change. This activity uses stuff you likely have at home and you can teach the kids how the different colours mixed create new colour combinations. Source
Bubble Party in the Sink
Bubbles are often involved with water play ideas for early years and babies, because it does not matter how old you get, bubbles are always! This is such a simple indoor water play activity that you could also do in the bath if you wanted to contain the water a bit more, or outdoors in a tub. Source
Educational Ocean Theme Preschool Sensory Bin
Sensory bins and themed scenes for water play are perfect for encouraging the use of imagination in younger children. You could come up with lots of different ideas for your theme that incorporate water. Sand play activities are always popular with kids though. Even though it makes us parents cringe at times. Sand everywhere!!!! My kids are obsessed. Source
Jar Lid Boats Water Play
Watching things float is a great way to introduce early science concepts and also give them the chance to make their own super cute floating jar lid boat. This is a water play activity for all ages. This is also a great indoor or outdoor water play activity. Source
Outdoor Water Activities For Preschoolers
Water Play With Flowers
A water activity that incorporates a bit of nature from the backyard. This is a perfect sensory activity that does not cost you a thing, as it is using things you likely have on hand. Source
Sponge Water Bombs
Water fights can be one of the favourite water games for kids. This is a soft and cheap alternative to water balloons that leaves no mess. Best of all, you can make them yourself using sponges from your local discount store! This is also a water play activity for older children… and maybe the adults too! Source
Painting With Water
This is an easy water play activity our kids do often when they visit their grandparents, as they have their own set of paintbrushes for outside to paint on the pavement. They spend ages painting pictures out of water. Source
DIY Backyard Splash Mat
This one is an elaborate one to put together but what an awesome fun water play activity for the backyard that even the big kids would be excited to join in with. Actually, if you make it long enough, I’m pretty sure mum and dad will join the fun too!! Source
Target T-Shirts and Water Pistols
This is a fun active outdoor water play activity that involves a bit of target practice… with the weapon of choice being a water pistol. A great way to teach younger kids to practice their motor skills and coordination with aiming at the target, plus a chance to cool off too. Source
Other Water Play Ideas Suitable for Pre School-Aged Children
Our children love playing with their water table, which has different sections to fill with water, water wheels, slides and scoops. They love filling up the little pools and of course, it usually ends in a bit of splashing! One of the easiest summer activities for preschoolers, plus a homemade water table is really easy to put together too.
They also enjoy playing in their backyard inflatable pool under supervision of course, usually with their mini backyard slide for some added fun.
Our girls are also obsessed with LOL Surprise Dolls, which has increased their love of water play since each of the dolls has a different surprise ability – they spit up, tinkle, cry and some colour change too. This means the girls are always asking for a bowl of icy cold water to play in with their doll collection.
Here are a few more ideas for water play for children’s learning and fun:
- Bubble Painting – Make bubbles in a tub and add some food colouring and place paper over the bubbles to make fun prints
- Ice Block Excavation – Freeze some plastic toys in a bowl of water, slide out of the bowl and let kids dig away at the ice until they find the treasures
- Sprinkler Play – Set up a sprinkler outside and let the kids run around
- Sensory Bottles – Fill old plastic bottles with water, food colouring, and small items, seal well and let them shake it up and see what happens
- Water Tunnels – Use old tubes and funnels to create your own water tunnels and watch the water flow through
- Blowing Bubbles – You can’t go past the simple bubble wand, no matter the age. Everyone loves bubbles!
- Building Sandcastles – A beach trip is the perfect sand and water play activities for preschoolers. Pack the bucket and spade and you’re good to go!
Free printable school holiday bucketlist : Get it here
Want some water fun ideas for the big kids? There are loads of swimming pool games to keep them occupied during the hot weather for hours!
Water safety is something very close to my heart and something everyone needs to take so seriously! Ensure all your water play activities are done under complete supervision and that your children know how to be safe around water. Little lives matter!
What other water play activities do you or your children enjoy?