July 31, 2015

Making rainfall

This activity involves water and kids are sure to love playing this one.

Items needed: Soap dish, Bowl, water.

Just push the soap dish in bowl of water and take it out in a second. You see gush of water flowing through the soap dish that looks similar to a rainfall.

Show the same to your toddler and make her feel the water flow with her hands.

Told her there were pores in the soap dish and that's the reason water was flowing down. She is observing the pores. 

Do I need to say separately that she had a blast with the water towards the end of this activity?

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Segregating activity

This one is loaded with both fun as well as crucial thinking ability. Also, the touch or feel with various kinds of stuff available opens up the neurons and helps grow the neural network.

I have offered my toddler, rajma seeds and kabuli chana both mixed in a bowl. I explained to her what each one is, asked her to touch and feel how it is and showed her that they can be segregated into two different bowls based on the category.

That's it, she got busy for some time now.

And later, I put some of the seeds in plastic box and another few in steel box. Showed my toddler how it sounds when we shake the box (also termed as sound shakers).

Needless to say, she enjoyed the sound, the mess and had fun overall.

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Experimenting with dropper

This activity makes use of a dropper, usually comes along with medicine/syrup. 
Items needed: Water, bowls, dropper

Show your toddler how water can be pulled into a dropper and then released slowly. 

My toddler, initially, found it hard to pull in the water, but thoroughly enjoyed releasing water by pressing the knob of dropper.

Seeing how the dropper feels to touch

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July 18, 2015

Wall painting

Kids just love playing with water, So try offering an organised play with a couple of things to take away here and there.

Materials needed:
                Paint Brush (The one used to paint walls)
                Wall on the backyard

Ask the child to dip paint brush in a mug of water smear on the wall. The kid will actually be amazed at how things happen.

Points observed while my toddler was doing this one are:

  1. She tried holding the paint brush in various angles as she was checking her comfort level - exploring various ways to hold things to do a specific thing and deciding upon which one is the best.
  2. She dipped the brush in water and pressed its bristles and laughed - noticed that the bristles hold some amount of water and that it flows down when she presses. 
  3. Tried smearing over the wall using various pressure points. She held the brush at a pointed angle for a while, in an inclined angle for a while and observed how the lines are coming up on the wall. 
  4. Immense happiness.

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Scooping out -2

Materials needed:
               Medium size scoop spoon
               Box containing any tiny things(I use plastic ABCs and 123s)
               Another tray or box(I use a tray)

Ask the child to scoop out the tiny things from the first box and put them into the other.

I also hooked the tray to the wall and asked my toddler to put the scooped out things into the tray.

Needless to say, she enjoys what she does and claps after completing the activity. Just looking at her expression makes me happy and contended.

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Stacking blocks

This is a made-up game that I had to create because of mishandling during shipping of the actual item. The original item consists of blocks of A, B, Cs and 1, 2, 3 etc. with a corresponding picture at the back of each block, woven into a 6*6 matrix and fixed to a stand. It being disassembled by the time it reached me and not being able to put it back in shape has paved way to make up this activity.

There are like 6 rods/sticks into which blocks are inserted, You can ask your toddler to hold the stick in one hand and insert the blocks one by one with the other,

This, again, is an art for them and they get excited seeing what they are actually capable of doing!!

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Moving beads

This activity too can be created with things available at home.
Materials needed:
         wall hooks - 2
         Thread/wire (reasonably strong)
          beads - medium size, preferably coloured

Stick the wall hooks on the wall not very far from each other. The distance between the two should be so much that the child can perceive. Child may lose interest if they are very far from each other.

Thread the beads together and just tie the thread to both the wall hooks.

Ask the child to keep moving each bead from one end to another. This one is sure fun to play, also teaches numbers and counting. My toddler gets excited as she holds on to each bead and keeps moving to the other end.

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Free hand sewing

This can be played with things available at home. I chose to make my toddler play with a small tray and wool thread.

I cut out a piece of wool thread and guided my toddler to sew along the void space in the tray.

She was excited about holding the thread and sending it into the orifice, getting it along and sending into the next orifice.

The ability to hold a thread with fingers and send it across an orifice is a key thing to take away in this activity.

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Stacking cups

This can be played by simple cups/bowls available at home.

You can keep calling out the number as the child picks up the cup and puts one over the other. The child is sure to learn counting, having good grip of holding objects.

If you look at the minutest detail, observe how child holds things. For example, when she is stacking the cups, one hand surrounds the cup with thumb on one side and four fingers on the other with the palm stretch across a bit. Another hand grips on the brim of cup with thumb on one side of the brim and other four fingers on the other side. All this is like dummy for us, like when we are working we don't even care to notice how we are holding things.

But, for a child, it is an art, an art by itself and the child really feels happy when she realises that she can actually grip on to a cup and put it into another so perfectly. It is an achievement for them that calls for our appreciation. Remember to keep cheering the little player by sharing her excitement and giving her a 'yay! feel' when she's done.

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Cloth hanger

This is funny, but I asked my child to hang tiny hand cloths onto a thread I arranged for play.

She held the thread with one hand and tried to balance the hand cloth with another hand as she was placing it across the thread.

She couldn't do it in first few attempts.

But, the moment she could do the balancing, she clapped her hands. And this is what makes me introduce her to many more creative plays.

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Making water bubbles

Ask the child to place her hand under running water and move it out in around 5 sec. You can observe tiny water bubbles on the hand that vanish away in a while.

Touch the bubbles.

Repeat with another hand.

Touch the bubbles.

My child loves making bubbles whenever I take her for cleaning up after a meal. And then, she tries to stop the water flow by holding her palm tight against the tap opening, the water spurts out, she laughs.

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Writing on a balloon

I always keep a handful of balloons at home. They can be used in many ways to keep the child moving.

Here, I was writing over a balloon and also asked my child to do. She noticed the airy feel when you write on a balloon.

Also, she used a sketch pen to write whose ink does not stay on the balloon. It can be wiped off with hand. And sure enough, she messed herself with all the ink.

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Scoop out

This one is interesting for a toddler. Firstly, she loves water. Secondly, she loves anything that resembles a bat. And to top it, she is given the freedom to handle on her own.

Materials needed: Trays/ Bowls - 2
                              Mesh Ladle
                              Small objects that can be taken out using mesh ladle

Place those small objects in a tray filled with water and ask your child to scoop out each object with the mesh ladle and place in another empty tray/bowl.

My toddler loved doing this and she clapped each time she finished one round.

You can ask the child to scoop out the shape that you call out.

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Pass it down the pipe

This one is interesting and can be made from empty cardboard boxes. I used empty toothpaste boxes to make this and was thoroughly enjoyed by my child.

Materials needed: Empty toothpaste boxes - (at least 2)
                              Small ball that fits into the toothpaste box
                              Wall adhesive (double sided tape)

Stick the empty toothpaste boxes in various inclinations such that when ball is dropped into the top box, it flows down and comes out of the bottom one.

I stuck one vertically and the other inclined.

Dropping a tiny ball into the top opening.

Observing what is really happening at the juncture. How can an item that is dropped into the top opening come out of the bottom one?

Observing the bottom opening.

1. 2. 3. Repeat. You can sit back and enjoy your child's reaction. Of course, do not forget to add a background voice on what is happening and how or why that item is behaving so.


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Mess around with paper

Yes, kids love messy things.
If things are not messy, they love to mess around and make things messy. And, I love offering messy activities in an organised way for play.
OK. Enough of the mess, let's clean up!

This activity can be done with old newspapers, magazines etc.

Ask the child to just keep tearing papers. Enjoy her expressions as she enjoys doing this.

Next, ask her to take heap of crumbled papers in palm and hold tight and then release.

Next, ask her to collect all the tiny bits of paper and make a lump.


(I could not take pictures at all times, but, I hope the sense of play is understood well)

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Matching the shoe pair

This one is played just by shoes. Also, this one could be played in a couple or more number of ways, like:

  • You can show one in a pair of shoes and ask your child to find the other one
  • You can ask your child to get a pair of shoes (matching one, of course)

My toddler started with getting a single shoe and then moved on to pick a pair of shoes at a time. 

She is looking for a shoe to start with.

Arranging one by one.

Got bored of getting single ones, getting a pair instead.

This is the final result:

And, she's done. Hip Hip Hurray!

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