When Kay got up from rest-time, I told her that someone needed her help and she might need her toolbox. She immediately thought that her daddy had come home early, so I had to temper those expectations by telling her it was actually something that needed her help. During the day I had frozen little plastic dinosaurs in ice. It needed to be done in layers, so it took several hours to be ready. I also threw in a marble and a little pretend jewel, just for variety. I had a table salt-shaker and a condiment squirter filled with warm water ready too.
I brought everything out to the water table and told her, "Once upon a time, dinosaurs were playing outside when it got really cold and they froze in the ice. Can you help get them get out?" I presented the ice block and she got right to work, barely listening as I explained that the salt and warm water "might" help to melt it. She squirted away, sprinkled - and then poured - on the salt and eventually got her hammer out too. Every once in a while she would call out, "I'm coming, dinosaurs!"
She was most fascinated by the salt.
When she got the first dinosaur out, she ran over to me, all excited."I did it!" she exclaimed, beaming with pride. When all animals were free again, the first words out of her mouth were, "Can I do it again?"