Sensory Play All Day
By: Alexa Moffat, Youth Associate
As the name suggests, sensory play incorporates your senses of sight, smell, taste, touch, and hearing, as well as your senses of balance and movement. While you might think of preschool or your local children’s museum as being the only places to supply your kiddo with sensory play opportunities, you can easily provide them at home on the cheap using everyday materials that you may already have! Some ideas:
Slice a pool noodle into inch-wide segments. Have your child thread them onto a jumbo pipe-cleaner. This will provide experience with different textures, as well as time to practice their fine motor skills.
Grab a few foam tiles and items with different textures like ribbons, pom-poms, loofahs, and faux-fur. Use a hot glue gun to attach them to the files to create a textural walkway. As your child walks or crawls on the walkway, describe the different textures they might feel: soft, bumpy, fuzzy, smooth or scratchy, for example.
Spread pom-poms across a placemat. Have your child sort them by size or color using their pointer finger and thumb or giant tweezers. This activity will encourage your child’s fine motor skills, as well as require them to cross their mid-line, an important pre-requisite skill for handwriting.
Give your kiddo a colander and pipe-cleaners. Have them thread the pipe-cleaners through the colander to work on their fine motor skills.
Use yogurt and food coloring to make edible finger paint to engage your child’s senses of touch and taste.
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