Beach Science Experiments That Will Make Your Kids Love Topsail


Beach Science Experiments That Will Make Your Kids Love Topsail | Ward Realty Topsail Island

While beach activities such as building sand castles and hunting crabs are certainly a lot of fun, at some point the kids are going to want to do "something else." Cleverly capture their interest and turn their plea into a entertaining teaching moment with these fun and easy beach science experiments.

Our staffers here at Ward Realty have rounded up six great science experiments that can be conducted from the comfort of your Topsail Island rental or even right on the beach! While most of these experiments do require some supplies, most are quite minimal and you probably even have them on hand.

Prepare to be the coolest mom on the sand this summer when you help your kids conduct these awesome beach science experiments that will make your kids LOVE Topsail island NC!


Mini Tide Pool

This neat tide pool experiment is one that can be customized to the tastes of the mini scientist. 

mini tide pool | Ward Realty Topsail Island

Learn all about how tides impact sea life by creating a realistic NC coastal scene with shells and sea life figures or get creative and design a prehistoric tidal environment with dinosaurs! No matter what kind of seascape your little researcher constructs, the lessons remain the same.

After you've run through the experiment once or twice, take a walk along a Topsail Island beach and look for natural tide pools near the surf line. See if the results of your experiments match with those designed by Mother Nature!


Beach In A Bottle

This beach in a bottle activity is a great option when the kids are done playing in the surf and are tired of building sand castles. 

child with beach in a bottle | Ward Realty Topsail Island

All you really need for this one is a clear plastic container (a wide-mouthed water bottle is perfect) and basic beach-y materials such as sand, water, and small shells. Adding additional found elements such as driftwood or seaweed will enhance the experiment but are not necessary.

Small scientists will enjoy shaking the bottle over and over and watching what happens within the container. They will be fascinated by watching how the individual components in this capsule can be repeatedly combined and separated, similar to what happens within the turbulent ocean.


Sand Volcanoes

These sand volcanoes are so much fun for budding scientists and very well may be the most immediately gratifying experiment of the bunch! 

child with sand volcanoes | Ward Realty Topsail Island

The instant chemical eruption that occurs when the ingredients combine within the volcano will draw gasps and giggles every time, so be prepared to draw a crowd! 

The primary variable in this activity occurs within the cone of the volcano. Test different cone depths or wall thicknesses to see what happens. You can also experiment to see what happens when you add more or less of each active ingredient. 

Add interest and make this beach science activity even more enjoyable by incorporating the volcano into a larger beach sand castle scene!


Sand Slime

Put all that sand in the bottom of your beach buckets to good use beach at the vacation rental with this easy sand slime experiment!

sand slime | Ward Realty Topsail Island

Slime is all the rage these days, and for good reason! There are seemingly hundreds of easy-to-make and fun-to-play-with recipes percolating throughout the internet, and chances are your budding scientist has made more than one.

That said, we think you should make at least one more batch of this delightfully stretchy stuff. Topsail Island Vacation Edition Slime is a great after-beach family activity, offers a unique way to commemorate your trip, and even makes a cool gift to give others upon your return home!


Salt Water Buoyancy

Discover why it's easier to float in the ocean than it is in the pool with this cool salt water buoyancy experiment!

sal water buoyancy | Ward Realty Topsail Island

This activity can be done both at the beach and at your Surf City rental. If you plan to do it at the beach, we recommend that you remove some ice from your cooler and let it melt to create the freshwater control rather than using your drinking water.

Once you've tested the buoyancy differences between the waters at the beach, consider taking your experiment to the next level back at your rental. Bring home a bottle of ocean water and use it in place of the freshwater control. Mix up an extra saturated saline solution by heating water and adding tablespoons of salt until the salt stops dissolving. Do the buoyancy results change? If so, how?


Seashell Crystals

Put your shelling treasures to work with this seashell crystal experiment!

crystal seashells | Ward Realty Topsail Island

This experiment works best if you initiate it at the start of your Topsail Island vacation week, or because of the time and ingredients involved, you may opt to wait to conduct this test on a special shell after you return home.

Conducting the experiment with shells that your mini researcher found along the Topsail Island coastline is a fun way to create a living memento of your vacation. Test the crystals on different types of shells to see if changes in their surfaces impact their growth!

IMPORTANT PARENT NOTE! This particular recipe recommends the use of Borax. You may prefer to swap out this ingredient and use salt or sugar to grow your crystals instead, as detailed in this post about alternative crystal growing methods. The primary result difference is that the non-Borax crystals generally take longer to form and growth may not be as dense.


⭐ Topsail Island Science Bonus ⭐

Maybe you're thrilled by the idea of beach science but not so excited about the planning and execution responsibilities required for each experiment. If that's the case, we recommend paying a visit to Ecological Marine Adventures in Surf City.

Ecological Marine Adventures offers all sorts of cool activity options for the science-minded members of your group. From day camps (single and multi-day) to nighttime ghost crab hunts to free community seminars, you are sure to find something here that matches your interests as well as your budget! 

The best thing about this bonus suggestion? It's all of the fun and none of the work for you, making it a totally vacation-worthy idea!


We know that you and your small scientists will enjoy each and every one of these fun beach science experiments, and we'd love to hear all about it. Feel free to share your results and any experiment notes that you record in the comments below!

Beach Science Experiments That Will Make Your Kids Love Topsail | Ward Realty Topsail Island

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