This activity was a science and vocabulary lesson I did to help the kids learn about the difference between “hard” and “soft.”
I started by gathering up a tray of items that were either hard or soft. I included hard things like a book, a marble, a wooden instrument, a plastic cat toy, a wooden banana, and a nut and bolt set. I included soft things like a stuffed animal, an orange, a squishy ball, a bean bag, some play foam, a pom pom, and a balloon filled with play dough.
I invited the kids to take turns selecting items from the tray.
Then they felt and squeezed and banged on the objects to determine if they were hard or soft. While they did this, we talked about how soft objects can be squished in our hands, but hard objects cannot.
And we compared how hard objects make a loud sound when banged against the floor but soft objects do not.
As the kids determined whether each object was hard or soft, we placed them into separate “hard” and “soft” piles.
Here are what our final piles looked like!