Summer has officially started this week, but I think the heat was ahead of schedule. It is hot, Hot, HOT! What better time to jump in the pool? Swimming in a pool this summer affords kids plenty of health benefits, but it can also be a good learning opportunity. We’ve found some of the best educational swimming pool games that promote exercise and offer an educational element to them.
1) Word Hunt
Get a few packs of sponges and write various letters on them with a permanent marker. Have your kids grab a specific number of sponges, or give them a time limit to grab as many as they can. Once they’ve collected them, see how many words they can come up with using what was collected.
2) Pool Noodle Counting
This can be a fun way for your kids to practice math. Get a pool noodle and cut it in equal rings. Write numbers on the rings and then create rules for each game: Collect the rings in order, or even numbers only, or multiples of three, etc. The game described in the link below is for indoors, but this game can easily be transferred to the pool!
3) Treasure Hunt
Grab your spare change, take a handful or two and throw it in pool. Have your kids collect and keep what they can pick up, but ONLY if they calculate the right amount. Change is a great way to learn to count by ones, fives, tens, and twenty-fives… This may be a game that’s more appropriate for the private pool as you may leave with a lot less than what you came with.
4) Whirpool/ Wavepool
You’ll need multiple people for this, but kids will be amazed at the amount of power they can generate. Smaller pools work better, but you have two options.
- Whirpool: Have everyone travel along the edge of the pool in one direction for three to four minutes. This will actually cause a current which will carry everyone in the pool with it.
- Wavepool: If you have boogie boards this works best, but you can create the same effect by just moving your arms back and forth just under the surface of the water without breaking the tension. The video below even describes the science behind it.
5) Boat Race/ Regatta
Who can create the best boat? Have kids create and build a sailboat. Put them in the pool and use straws to see who has a more effective sale to travel across the water.
What are some of your family’s favorite ways to make the pool educational? Please share them in the comments!
Featured Image – Gary Robson / CC by 2.0