I love February because it’s the month to celebrate love, friendship, and kindness. I also love it because there are so many fun holidays we get to celebrate in February. You know I love a good reason to do a STEM challenge with my students. That’s because they get to play while being creative, thinking critically, and they practice concentration. These five STEM Challenges for February do just that!
I’m going to show you five fun STEM challenges for February that I like to do with my second and third-graders. If you teach another grade level, keep reading because they might fit the bill. Plus, I have even more STEM Challenges for kindergarten through second grade that I’ll share towards the end.
#1 Groundhog’s Day STEM Challenge for February
Groundhog Day is the first holiday in February. I love it because it’s a sign that winter is coming to an end and spring is thankfully approaching. Hallelujah!
I love doing the following activity because it’s a game of chance, which is what Groundhog’s Day is all about! If you teach partitioning shapes or modeling and comparing fractions, then you’ve got to try this STEM activity for February!
For this activity, each student will need five math counters, a cup, a pencil, and a recording sheet from my TPT shop.
Place your counters inside the cup.
The yellow represents spring, and the red represents six more weeks of winter.
Students shake the cup and dump the counters to create a fraction for spring and a second fraction for winter. Then they compare their fractions to see which is more likely to happen – early spring or late winter.
This activity includes modeling and comparing fractions. If you teach younger students, you can modify it by having them write the total number of yellow counters in the top square and the total number of red counters in the bottom square. Then have students compare the two whole numbers.
There are several more STEM challenges in this bundle which include more STEM activities for February.
Along with this activity, I also included science experiments with shadows and habitats in this resource. You’ll also find reading passages, suggested stories, and more in this resource. You can get this resource from my TPT shop.
#2 Valentine’s Day STEM Challenges
Our next holiday is Valentine’s Day and I love this STEM challenge for February because you likely have all the materials in your classroom already!
This is a STEAM activity called Heart Art. Students create a carnation using rotational symmetry with a heart. Students rotate the heart as many times as they want, and trace the heart to create a carnation.
We did this in my STEM club, and it was so much fun! Once my students finished creating their carnations, we cut and pasted them onto construction paper to create a Valentine’s Day card for their special adults.
I have many more Valentine’s Day STEM Activities, but this one you can do with almost any grade level, and it’s great for exercising fine motor skills.
#3 Mardi Gras STEM Challenges
Mardi Gras is so much fun and super important to my fellow Louisianians. I have two STEM challenges for Mardi Gras, and both require a ton of concentration. I like this one because it’s something students can take with them after school.
Oftentimes, they don’t get to take home their creations, and it makes it so much better when they can.
You know how beads are a huge deal during Mardi Gras?
Well, I thought it’d be fun if students could create their own personalized beads using tap code.
Tap code is a way to encode text messages on a letter-by-letter basis in a simple way.
The message is transmitted using a series of tap sounds, and fun fact, many prisoners of war used tap code to communicate with one another through their cells.
In this STEM challenge for February, students learn about tap code.
Then, they create necklaces using the colors of Mardi Gras to create their names. Once they’re finished, you may hear them tapping their name on their desk. It’s pretty neat!
#4 President’s Day STEM Challenge for February
President’s Day is so much fun. In California, we actually get an entire week off from school. I’m so thankful for that. I like to teach my students about the perseverance our Presidents endure with this fun STEM activity.
We all know that Presidents have a challenging job to do. They are faced with problems that aren’t always easy to solve. In this STEM challenge, students get to act like a President and solve hard problems!
Students work to decode messages using clues that they are given. These are tough! They require a ton of critical thinking to solve, and they introduce students to more types of codes.
This bundle of Presidents Day STEM Challenges is great because it includes two more Presidents Day STEM Challenges like a wax resistance cake, a gift for the President, reading passages, suggested literature, and more.
#5 K-2 Valentine’s Day STEM Challenges
Now, if you’ve been around a while, you probably know that I was a STEM coach for the only K-2 STEM team in NC for seven years. Our little ones are fun. I was so excited to partner with my friend Lisa Taylor Teaching the Stars to create the STEM Challenges for February specifically for our younger students.
Our February STEM challenges include:
- Candy Heart Towers
- Candy Heart Experiments
- Cupid Challenges
- Candy Heart Sling Shot
- Cupid Catapults
- Eiffel Tower Challenge
Try this Candy Heart Tower STEM Challenge for FREE! I’ll send you the procedure, printables, and more when you sign up for my newsletter here.
Finally, if you have a Valentine’s Celebration, make sure you check out my Valentine’s Day Celebration Ideas. I share five fun ideas for math, science, STEM, and crafts so that you can have a stress-free and fun celebration with your students. One of my favorites is creating a Valentine’s Day bag like below.
Have fun celebrating the holidays with these STEM challenges for February!