Just Add Water! 9 Fun Ice Games And Activities For Kids


With the weather getting warmer and nothing yet open to actually go and do - you may be struggling to find activities to enjoy at home.

That's where ice comes in. Who knew something so cheap and easy to make could create so many different fun games and activities? We've rounded up our nine favourite ways to have a blast with ice, check them out!

Painting With Ice

Equipment needed: An ice cube tray, paint or food colouring, and wooden lolly or skewer sticks.

A great way for kids to get creative and make some (very unique) gorgeous paintings is to use ice cubes. Start by filling each cube in your tray with around a third of either paint or food colouring - using a different colour each time. Then, top of the other two thirds with water, insert a wooden stick and place in the freezer for a few hours until solid. Lay down some plain white paper, and using the wooden sticks to avoid messy hands, your kids will be able to paint on the paper whatever they'd like.

Free the Toy

Equipment needed: An empty ice cream tub or container, toys or figures (we'd recommend dinosaurs or animals), and some utensils to break the ice.

This super simple game is so much fun to play, especially in the garden on a warmer day. The evening before your kids are going to play, you'll need to place a few toys in each container, fill them with water, and place in the freezer overnight or until completely solid. Place down some plastic/newspaper to soak up any excess water, pop the frozen block from the container, and you're set to go. The game works as follows: your child/children need to try to find and free their toys from the ice using whichever utensils or methods they wish to - the winner is whoever manages to do it the fastest!

Knock Down the Target

Equipment needed: An ice cube tray, a flat surface or table, and toys or figures.

This game is so much fun to play for both younger and older children and is definitely addictive. Fill your tray with water and leave it in the freezer until frozen. When your kids are ready to play, simply line up a group of toys (these could be lego people, animal figurines, or even mini cars) on one end of the table, and let your kids take turns sliding the ice down from the other end to knock over as many over as they can. Whoever knocks over all of their figures in the least amount of turns, wins!

Icy Boat Racing

Equipment needed: An ice cube tray, cocktail sticks, coloured paper, glue, and tin foil.

If your little ones are at all competitive, then this may just be one of the best activities for you. Start off by filling your trays with water - these will be your boats. Then, you're going to want to make mini sails. You can do this by taking a cocktail stick, cutting out a triangular bit of coloured paper and glueing this on. Allow it to dry, insert it into the water, and place these in the freezer for a few hours or until solid. In the meantime, you can fashion your tin foil into a race track, on a slight slope. When your boats are ready to play with, run some water down the slope, and release them all at the same time - cheering your mini boats on and seeing which one makes it to the end of the slope first. Your kids will love this super fun game - and you'll certainly get some giggles out of them!

Fizzy Ice

Equipment needed: An ice cube tray, vinegar, food colouring, and baking soda.

Colourful, interactive, and exciting - this is a great way to get your little ones learning more about science whilst feeling like they're playing a game. Begin by freezing some ice cubes in a tray, then mix up several little containers of vinegar and food colouring so that you're left with a few different coloured liquids. Place your frozen ice into a container, sprinkle baking soda over it, add more ice and repeat until you've got a mound of baking soda covered ice. Now, it's time for the experiment to begin. Gently pour a few drops of coloured vinegar over the ice and watch the fizzling reaction. Take your time experimenting with different colours and discussing what happens - your kids will be mesmerised!

Painting On Ice

Equipment needed: A large container, paint, and paintbrushes.

For a great sensory experience, and a very unique way to paint a picture - this activity will be a winner amongst the kids. Fill a large container with water and place in the freezer overnight. When your children are ready to get painting, simply let them wet their brushes, dip them into the paint, and use the giant frozen block as a canvas. They'll be able to make some gorgeous swirly patterns and pictures, even if they can't keep them forever.

Melt the Ice Game

Equipment needed: Ice cube tray.

This super fun game is perfect for both older children and your little ones - and is great to play as a family.  After you've frozen your ice cubes and removed them from the freezer, you'll need to split up into two groups of at least two people. Then, it's time to compete! The first person in the group must try to melt the cube as much as they can in their hands. When they can no longer hold it because it's too cold, they must pass it on to the next person, and back and forth, until it's completely melted. The first group to melt their cube wins!

Dissolving Hands

Equipment needed: Rubber gloves, food colouring, and salt.

Whether you view this as a game or a science experiment - your kids are sure to love this activity. Mix some food colouring and water in a jug and pour this into your rubber gloves, making sure to leave space to tie the gloves tightly at the top. Place these in the freezer overnight. When your children are ready to play, simply snip off and peel the glove off - you'll now be left with some amazing colourful hands. Not only do these make for a fun way to play - but you can also have fun sprinkling salt on them and seeing how they react and melt.

Ice and Spoon Race

Equipment needed: Ice cube tray and spoons.

You've most certainly heard of the egg and spoon race, but did you know you could also play it with ice? Simply freeze your ice cubes, pop them out of the container, place one on each spoon, and take turns racing without letting the slippery block fall on the floor. The game is so exciting and will have the whole family laughing!



At Kidadl we pride ourselves on offering families original ideas to make the most of time spent together at home or out and about, wherever you are in the world. We strive to recommend the very best things that are suggested by our community and are things we would do ourselves - our aim is to be the trusted friend to parents.

We try our very best, but cannot guarantee perfection. We will always aim to give you accurate information at the date of publication - however, information does change, so it’s important you do your own research, double-check and make the decision that is right for your family.

Kidadl provides inspiration to entertain and educate your children. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. Our recommended activities are based on age but these are a guide. We recommend that these ideas are used as inspiration, that ideas are undertaken with appropriate adult supervision, and that each adult uses their own discretion and knowledge of their children to consider the safety and suitability.

Kidadl cannot accept liability for the execution of these ideas, and parental supervision is advised at all times, as safety is paramount. Anyone using the information provided by Kidadl does so at their own risk and we can not accept liability if things go wrong.

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