Fill the Bucket Race


Racing to fill water buckets or containers

Materials Required

  1. Cups
  2. Water
  3. Buckets, containers or bowls


Prepare a clear space in your yard that is free from trip hazards and obstacles – A towel to dry your child off when finished the activity.

Method (or Ideas)

  1. Set up one line of buckets or containers at one end of yard.
  2. Fill buckets/containers with water with your child.
  3. Place cups beside the buckets/containers.
  4. Place buckets/containers in a line at the other end of yard (or a reasonable space away).
  5. Encourage your child to fill a cup with water and then walk quickly or run to the other end of the yard and tip into buckets/containers. Don’t forget to participate too!
  6. Encourage your child to keep going in this process untill the bucket or container is full.
  7. Talk about how much water is now in the bucket.
  8. Cheer each other and have fun!

Facilitation Tips – What To Say


  • Water
  • Cold
  • Splish and splosh and splash
  • Drip and drop
  • Empty and full
  • High and low
  • Fast and slow
  • Talk about volume and capacity – How much water do you think is in the bucket? How can we measure it?.

Extend the Experience

  • Use cups and different kitchen utensils to measure water and other liquids.
  • Egg and spoon race

WHO Guidelines for Physical Activity & Sedentary Behaviour

This activity encourages your child to be physically active.

Early Years Learning Framework


  1. Children develop their emerging autonomy, inter-dependence, resilience and sense of agency
  2. Children become aware of fairness.


Principle 1: Secure, respectful and reciprocal relationships. Through a widening network of secure relationships, children develop confidence and feel respected and valued.


Practice: Learning through play. Play can expand children’s thinking and enhance their desire to know and to learn. In these ways play can promote positive dispositions towards learning. Children’s immersion in their play illustrates how play enables them to simply enjoy being.

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