I love using counters and manipulatives in math that tie in with other units of study. If you’re studying weather, these light blue-dyed pumpkin seeds make the cutest little raindrops! These raindrops are perfect to use for counting, addition, subtraction, measuring, and other weather math activities this spring.
Dyed Pumpkin Seed Raindrops
- pumpkin seeds
- shallow bowl
- paper towels
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 1 1/2 TSBP vinegar
- a few drops of blue food coloring
Pour the water and vinegar into a shallow bowl. Add a few drops of blue food coloring and mix it all together.
Next, add in the desired amount of pumpkin seeds. The seeds will float, so stir them around to coat them in the mixture.
Let the seeds soak for about an hour and a half. This amount of time gives the seeds a perfect light blue tint. If you want the seeds to be a darker color, soak them longer. They will also look darker when wet and dry lighter, so keep that in mind, too.
Remove the seeds from the bowl after the desired amount of soaking time and lay them on a tray or paper towels to completely dry.
Once dry, these little raindrops make the best counters for all of your weather math activities. Here are a few ideas for how to use them:
Write numbers or number words on clouds and have students show the number of raindrops falling from the cloud.
Adding or Subtracting Raindrops
Print a cloud on white paper and laminate it. Write addition or subtraction problems on the cloud with a dry erase marker. Use the raindrops to model the addition or subtraction sentences.
Measuring with Non-standard Units
Line up the raindrops end to end along objects to measure them and find out how many raindrops long they are. Here are some objects students might measure:
- a pencil
- a book
- a piece of paper
- a crayon
- a marker
- a shoe
- a pair of scissors
- a box (like a cereal or tissue box)
- a ruler
Each of these weather math activities are great to use in small groups or centers!
Weather Unit for Kindergarten and First Grade
These math activities are a part of my week-long weather unit for kindergarten and first grade.
The unit includes detailed daily lesson plans just for you. It incorporates science, reading, writing, math, experiments, handwriting, and art. See it all here!