This experience will introduce your child to pouring from one container to another in preparation for pouring their own drink.
Ensure hands are thoroughly washed after handling the soil.
Prior to sitting down with your child, fill a jug with some fine soil from the garden and find another jug or bowl you can use. Place the jug and bowl down in front of you and show your child the soil in the jug, naming it for them. Pick up the jug and very slowly show them how to pour the soil from the jug into the other container.
Next show them how to pour the soil back into the jug. Encourage your child to have a turn and let them repeat pouring the soil from the jug to the container as many time as they wish.
Use language to describe how the flour flows: quickly or slowly and explain to them that this is how they can pour a drink into their own cup. When you have finished the activity encourage your child to help clear up any spilt soil.
This experience help's develop a number of your baby's senses, particularly touch and sight.
Consider any allergies before completing the experience. Closely supervise baby when completing this experience.
Place some water in a jug and some flour, cornflour may also be used, in two shallow trays or bowls and place the trays on the floor.
Invite your baby to join you by holding your arms out to them. Once you are both comfortably seated on the floor, encourage your baby to place their hands in the tray of dry flour by first placing your hands in it, rubbing the flour in your hands and allowing it to run through your fingers.
Describe how it feels, "This is soft". Now encourage them to place their hands in the flour and explore it, share a range of vocabulary to support your child's understanding.
Next pour some water into the second tray of flour and start to mix it, encourage your baby to place their hands in and help mix the flour and water. Share key phrases with your baby, "This is sticky," or "This is wet".
Back and forth
This experience prepares your child for holding a conversation back and forth in the future.
Consider the size of the item used and ensure this doesn't pose a choking hazard for your child.
Pick one of your child's favourite toys and then settle yourselves comfortably on the floor placing the toy in between you and your child.
Pick up the toy and pass it your child, encouraging them to take hold of it. Talk to them as you do so using familiar words.
Now hold out your hands so they know you want them to pass the toy back to you, encourage them to use their sounds/words, and ensure you talk to them as you take the toy back from them.
Continue in this way, passing the toy back and forth talking to your child as you pass the toy to them and encouraging them to use their sounds/words as they pass it back.
Count as you dress
This experience will encourage your child to develop their one to one correspondence and counting whilst helping to develop their independence.
Be patient and provide your child with child with time to complete the task if trying to put on an item of their own clothing.
Make your child's morning dressing routine into a fun way to practise one to one correspondence and counting.
As you start to dress your child take their first item of clothing and talk to them as you place their first arm into their top saying, "One arm". Then, "Two arms," as you place their second arm in.
This can be repeated for each item of clothing and it can also be repeated when you undress and dress them ready for bed.
You can also use this experience when buttoning items of clothing and putting on gloves and shoes to go outside.
Older children can be encouraged to repeat what you are saying.
Animal flip board
This experience will help your child to recognise animals and give them an understanding of the world that surrounds them.
Check the cardboard is safe and doesn't have sharp corners. Store scissors out of your child's reach.
Collect together a flat sheet of cardboard and some pictures of animals: dog, cat, tiger. Stick the pictures onto your sheet of cardboard and then cut some squares of cardboard to fit over the pictures. Stick the squares in place so they have to be lifted to reveal the pictures.
Sit comfortably on the floor with your child with the animal picture card easily accessible to them. Lift one of the flaps to reveal the animal beneath and name it for your child.
Let your child continue to explore the board continuing to name the animals for them as they lift each flap.
This experience supports your baby's hand muscles whilst also exploring wet and dry textures.
Supervise this activity throughout and ensure any spilt water is promptly wiped up to avoid a slipping hazard. Pour the water out of the bowl once the experience is complete.
Fill a bowl with tepid water and find small suitable sponges or cloths. Once comfortably seated on the floor with your child have the bowl and sponge positioned in front of you.
Invite your child to feel, explore and hold a sponge in their hands. Then, show your child how they can explore placing the sponge in the water and squeezing it so that it fills with water. Encourage them to explore with squeezing the sponge or cloth.
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