Last month we were at a Children’s Museum and my boys were obsessed with racing wooden boats down a soapy ramp. They could have been there for hours doing that one activity! After we came home, I brainstormed ways we could do a similar activity at home. I came up with something close and the boys LOVED it! I have a feeling we will be doing a lot of soap boat racing this summer!
Here‘s what you need for the activity:
- rain gutter (we found ours at Lowes…and it is quite long. Just picture me driving home with it sticking out of the passenger window AND the back window of our car! At least we live close!)
- soap bars
- hose and water
To make the soap bars look like boats, we added a colorful flag. To do this, my preschooler colored a piece of cardstock paper (using Do-a-Dot markers) and then we cut them into rectangles. Next, we taped a toothpick to the back and stuck them into the soap bars. I love how colorful they turned out!
Then we took the rain gutter and propped it onto a small picnic table. Lastly, we placed the hose at the top and turned the water on. Before doing the actual activity, I had the boys predict what they thought would happen. Then we tried racing the soap boats! The boys were surprised at how fast the water moved the soap bars down the ramp.
Iloved watching them with this activity!
The challenging, yet fun part for my boys, was picking up the boat at the bottom of the gutter. Since the water made it slippery, they had a challenge to pick them up and bring it back to the top.
This was a great mini-lesson on water pressure, too! We tried turning the water up higher and watched how it pushed the boats down the gutter faster! We also tried propping the gutter up higher and saw that it moved the boats down even faster.
Had a little traffic jam! 🙂
My boys LOVED this activity. I was happy we finally had warm enough weather to try this out! We will definitely be doing a lot more racing with soap boats this summer!