Monday, September 19, 2011

The Life Cycle of a Snowman

In 2nd grade we are learning about the states of matter: solid, liquid, gas.  What better way to learn about this than to have a snowman visit our school and melt away throughout the day? The students really enjoyed watching him change but were a little sad when we "cooked" him into gas ;-)

Click HERE for instructions and recording sheet.

Fill balloons with water  - small, medium, and large - and place in  bowls with the tied  side down so  it will create a  flat surface.  Lay something on top of the  balloons to create a flat surface on top. Once frozen, remove balloon and stack balls using salt to help them adhere to each other. Cut out decorations with felt and stick to ice.

Students recorded the changes throughout the day .

We also kept a data chart with the water measurements  - as the snowman got smaller, the water got deeper!

Poor Frosty ;-(

The final stage
Frosty enters the atmosphere as a gaseous memory of a fantastic day!
**Check out this awesome sequencing activity page 
created by Lauren Lynes!

***Brooke Gravett has also created this wonderful instruction and recording product on her TpT store. Click HERE to download.

Photography:  Ginny Limer - my awesome curtain partner!


  1. Awesome! Passing link to all my 4th grade colleagues. Thanks!

  2. Unreal! You know this lesson will stay with them forever!
    Thanks for sharing,
    Fern Smith’s Classroom Ideas!
    Fern Smith’s Pinterest Boards!

  3. Love it!
    Thanks so much.

  4. What a great idea!! I cant wait to try it.

  5. I LOVE THIS!!!! Thanks for sharing! I love your blog : )

  6. Thank you!!! This is great, and my 3rd graders will be doing this next week. I know I have some balloons in a cabinet somewhere.

  7. Great idea! Can't wait to share with my class!

  8. If you keep melted Frosty in your classroom he will 'eventually' disappear through evaporation... no additional heat source required.

  9. Oh, how great this would be for my ELLs! Thanks!

  10. LOVE this! I also teach 2nd grade. Come check out my blog sometime. I am having a giveaway. :)
    Diving Into 2nd Grade

  11. Hi! I saw your melting snowman on Pinterest! I am teaching my students about the scientific process and wanted to illustrate the states of matter with a melting snowman. I came across your pin and had to reach out to you because apparently, we love the same idea :)

    I am linking you up to my blog. Come check it out - email me if you want the Snowman Science packet...It's a freebie for you! I am your newest follower!

  12. Hi! I just wanted to let you know that I saw this activity on Pinterest last year, so I did it with my kiddos, and plan to do it again this year :) I teach 2nd as well. I made a record sheet to go along with this activity, and have given you credit for the idea! Check it out here:

    1. Lauren, I love it! Thank you so much. I have included a screen shot and link to your product in this post and in the post I did this year: The Life Cycle of a Snowman 2012

  13. Dear Louise,
    Thank you so much for sharing such a creative and fun activity. I hope you will not mind, but I have created a lab recording sheet with vocabulary, room to draw and record hypotheses and observations, and am offering it for FREE on, giving you full credit for the project. When I create something I know will help my 2nd graders, I feel almost compelled to share it with the world, but would never want to take credit for your work, creativity, or ideas!

    1. How wonderful! Thank you for creating such a great companion to this fun activity!