Trying to keep my 10 month old son occupied and discovering new things is a full time job but a quick internet search bought me to the wonderful imagination tree site. The site is run by mum of 2 Anne who was a primary school teacher for nearly 10 years, there is age specific crafts and activities to help with your child’s numeracy, literacy and other skills. Today I tried some of the sensory bottles and a posting toy.
Anne lists some sensory bottles she made for her daughters here.
I took a little inspiration from the list and made two sensory bottles for Jack. Bottle 1 contained water, blue food colouring, glitter, ripped up foil and a little rice (for sound effects). I used a round bottle so that when it is rolled the weight of the water carries it further,perfect for my little crawler. This bottle teaches Jack about how the movement of water can affect an object and how he can affect it too.
Bottle 2 contained ripped up pieces of different coloured tissue paper, tin foil and cut up pipe cleaners. This bottle is more visual and teaches Jack about different colours and how he can effect the movement of objects. Jack likes to tip this bottle upside down until all the paper has reached the bottom of the bottle then he tips it up again.
Both bottles are clean and dry before use and once the objects have been placed instead they are sealed shut using strong duct tape (strong glue or sealant can also be used). Have a go at making a sensory bottle for your little one, anything colourful, shiny, interesting, noisy or intriguing that is too small for your little one to explore on its own works great in a bottle.
Jack has reached the stage of babyhood where he likes to put objects in a container and take it back out again over and over. He also likes to make as much noise as he can and can often be heard thumping different objects to see what sounds they can make (I’m too blame for that with my musical influence). So what could be more perfect that a posting toy?
All you need is a container (hot chocolate or coffee canisters work best) and something to post (I used jar lids).
Wash and dry your chosen container then cut a slit in the lid wide enough for whatever you are posting. Then just simply make sure there are no sharp edges.
Jack had great fun ‘posting’ the lids then pulling the top off and tipping them out again.
He also loved the sound the lids made when he tipped them out or banged them together.
As Jack gets older I will add numbers to the lids so he can learn to count while playing but for now he just enjoys making as much noise as possible :).
Other ideas using lolly sticks, ribbon and other materials can be found here.
I took more inspiration from the wonderful Imagination tree and a few weeks back made Jack a treasure box with items to explore, touch, taste and help him learn about the world around him. They can contain anything you think your little one would find interesting, Jack treasure trove had socks, his pair of little crocs, a rubber egg poacher, wooden spoon, dried pasta in a bottle and various other objects but Daddy’s banana man boxers were the funniest.