Water Temperature Activity

Investigate the difference between water in sunlight and water in shade over time! Your child will set out two cups of water and measure temperatures to learn that the sun heats up water.

For this water temperature activity, you’ll need:

pitcher or large bowl

measuring cup

two of the same cups that can hold 8 ounces of liquid

two thermometers


a place outside with sunlight

a place outside with shade


Fill a pitcher or large bowl with water, and stir it a few times with your hand. Pour 8 ounces of this water into a measuring cup. Pour the water from the measuring cup into one of the cups. Repeat this for the other cup.

Put a thermometer in each cup. Wait a few minutes and then look at the temperatures for each cup. Place one cup outside in sunlight and the other outside in shade. Check the temperatures for each cup after ten minutes, thirty minutes, and one hour.

Do you want to turn this activity into an experiment so your child can follow the steps of a scientific investigation? Use the Sea Surface Temperature lesson plan found inside ei4k’s Community!

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