The super quick and easy ice excavation is an excavation style that is often overlooked and underrated. With just a little imagination, this activity can really entertain and educate in countless scenarios. 
All you need are some ice trays or containers, items to be excavated, some tools with which to excavate your super easy ice excavation and a little creativity. 
1. Ice trays - Nowadays the sky is the limit when it comes to ice trays. A simple set of the cube shaped trays are easy to find at your local dollar store. For those looking for something a little fancier, you can find silicon ice trays online in pretty much any shape you can imagine. For example, you can find really cute dinosaur shaped ice trays that you could use to create dinosaur ice age excavations!
Use ice trays to make your easy ice excavation
2. Containers - Do not feel limited to simply using ice trays. Pretty much any container that can hold water and freeze without cracking or breaking will work. You can use little small plastic bowls or even large containers to create mega excavations! For these larger excavations, you could freeze the items in separate layers so they do not all settle at the bottom.
Pro tip: You can also make frozen water balloon excavations. Just add your items to the balloon making sure not to puncture the balloon. Fill with water. Tie the end and freeze. You can even add a little food coloring to the water to add even more fun! 
3. Items - As with all our excavation tutorials, you can pretty much pick whatever you want to go into your excavation. You could use fun little plastic polar bears, penguins, seals and so forth to make a fun glacier excavation.
Use little plastic cold weather animals in your easy ice excavation
Our Outrageous Rocks Excavating Adventure contains an awesome assortment of rocks that have super cool, weird, and down right strange properties and characteristics. One of the rocks is pumice which actually floats. An awesome easy ice excavation would be to freeze some pumice in ice. The ice excavations could then be dropped in warm water and the participant would be in awe as the ice melts away and the pumice rock continues to float! 
4. Tools - As with most excavations, you will need tools or some way to excavate the item hidden inside. As mentioned above, warm water that isn't too hot to injury participants could be used to reveal items from the ice. You could also use straws or pipets to drip warm water on the ice or a small hammer and chisel to safely and gently chip away at the ice excavation. Be sure to use goggles to protect those eyes! A spray bottle filled with warm water is another great way to excavate your easy ice excavation. 
Pro tip - Add a little food coloring to the ice to give it some character. Just be sure that wherever the excavation melts is stain proof so the food coloring does not cause any damage. 
Silicon ice trays come in many shapes and make great easy ice excavations
The easy ice excavation is a super simple, inexpensive, and fun way to utilize the excavation concepts of discover, identify, and collect to inspire and teach. You are only limited by your imagination so have fun and get freezing.
The kiddos will love this activity on a warm summer day and the easy ice excavation makes a great activity to use in homeschool lessons. It is also an inexpensive classroom activity for all those amazing teachers out there that are looking for ways to convey important concepts to eager young minds! 

Cool Facts About Ice: Exploring its Impact on Geology


  1. Ice is the solid form of water and is essential for shaping the Earth's surface through various geological processes.

  2. Glaciers are large masses of ice that move slowly across the land, carving out valleys, creating lakes, and shaping mountains.

  3. Ice plays a vital role in weathering and erosion. When water freezes in cracks and crevices of rocks, it expands, causing the rocks to break apart.

  4. Ice wedging is a common form of weathering, where water seeps into cracks in rocks, freezes, and expands, gradually breaking the rocks into smaller pieces.

  5. Glacial erosion occurs when moving ice scrapes and carves the land, shaping valleys and leaving behind distinctive features like cirques, arêtes, and U-shaped valleys.

  6. Ice can also transport rocks and sediments. As glaciers move, they pick up rocks and carry them along, eventually depositing them as the ice melts.

  7. Ice can cause the formation of frost heaves, where the freezing and thawing of water in soil cause the ground to lift and crack.

  8. Ice can create unique landforms, such as ice caves, icefalls, and icebergs, which add to the diversity and beauty of Earth's landscapes.

  9. Ice is responsible for shaping coastlines through the process of ice erosion and deposition. It can create stunning features like fjords and barrier islands.

  10. Ice has played a significant role in the Earth's history, especially during periods of glaciation, where large parts of the planet were covered in ice.

  11. The study of ice and its effects on geology helps scientists understand Earth's past climate patterns and provides insights into future climate change.

  12. Ice is not only important for geology but also plays a crucial role in supporting ecosystems by providing freshwater habitats and regulating Earth's temperature.

Remember, while ice can be fun to explore and observe, always prioritize safety when engaging with frozen bodies of water or icy terrains.

If you love excavating as much as we do, be sure to check out our Excavating Adventures monthly subscription by clicking the link below and get an awesome new excavation delivered each month loaded with rocks, minerals, gemstones, fossils, and more!
  1. What is the process where water freezes in cracks of rocks, causing them to break apart? A) Melting B) Erosion C) Weathering D) Sedimentation

    Correct answer: C) Weathering

  2. What are large masses of ice that move slowly across the land, shaping valleys and mountains? A) Icebergs B) Glaciers C) Ice caves D) Frost heaves

    Correct answer: B) Glaciers

  3. How does ice contribute to the shaping of coastlines? A) By creating ice caves B) By causing frost heaves C) By forming icebergs D) Through erosion and deposition

    Correct answer: D) Through erosion and deposition