Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Play Time: Sensory Baskets

Today's 'Play Time' is a blast from the past so before you're wondering,  No, Freddie hasn't been hammering the Oil of Olay, he's only 8 months in the photograph! 

We are talking about Treasure Baskets or Sensory Baskets or even Baskets of Crap as Mr C refers to them. 

They are quite simply, baskets of 'treasure' for your baby. Although before you rush to empty your family heirlooms, let me explain. They are full of items that your baby can use their sense to explore.

We first discovered the idea at our locals Children's Centre where we learnt about the Monteserri Education Theory that children learn using all 5 senses rather than just listening. It makes lots of sense if you think about it.

You can put a range of objects in a sensory box and you can even adapt them to particular themes such as nature, seaside, colours, kitchen items etc. 

Or you can do what we did and throw bits of everything in. As long as things are safe & non toxic then there's is no reason to not chuck them in. Things with different textures to touch, are ideal as they stimulate the senses. Items such as loofahs, sponge, silky material and pine cones are wonderful.

Take care to ensure that there objects aren't sharp or choking hazards to baby. Items that make different sounds provide great entertaiment and keep them amused for a long time. I'd recommend objects such as sets of measuring spoons, keys, rain sticks (homemade with a sealed beaker & rice) and hand bells.

I used one basket with around ten items in which I changed every few days as Freddie got older. I found that changing the items was like giving him a new toy every few days without the cost and inconvenience of having to shop for them.

Being a first child and grandchild, he had lots of toys but treasure baskets were by far the best.

This Article provides lots of useful information and an extensive list of items to include.

I'd really recommend making a treasure basket for your baby. It's cheap & cheerful, provides hours of entertainment as well as stimulating baby and aiding their development. 

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