Learning through play is so important—especially in the developmental years. Fortunately, you don’t need expensive learning games and toys to help achieve milestones. There are activities you can make with your own household items perfect for tiny fingers and toes.
I used to do a lot of these activities with Brooks, too. Even though they are mostly directed toward children Scarlett’s age, (8 months-2 years) he still gets something out of it. These activities help promote creativity, imagination, motor skill development, and help build awareness of the world. And, let’s be honest—it’s also a great way to keep them occupied!
Before I share with you, be prepared for a MESS for some of these activities. Even though it’s a pain for you, it’s so fun for your kids! A little mess once in awhile doesn’t hurt anyone! Plus it’s a great time for them to help clean up.
These activities I’ve listed below are some of our AB-solute favorites! Brooks and Scarlett both loved them—your kids will too!
Noodle Treasure Hunt:
Since babies put literally everything in their mouth, thick pasta is better than sand or rice. It also has more texture and easy for them to pick up with their little fingers. We hide toys in there for them to dig out. Obviously, the toys should be big enough that they can’t choke on them. I used wooden toys and blocks!
Babies will love exploring the different textures and practicing picking up the objects.
All you need is a box of thick pasta noodles (penne, etc.) + a Tupperware container or baking dish + hidden “treasure” toys.
You know how they always say to just get your children a box for the holidays? That’s all they ever want to play with anyway! Get some quality learning and sensory play out of it but making your very own sensory board.
For this activity, the creativity is all up to you. For our sensory board, I cut out holes in the side of the box (or cardboard) and decorated with colorful pipecleaners, mosaic mirrors, feathers, confetti (in a zip-loc and glued on the back) and pom-poms. Scarlett will play with this for hours!
I am always, always, always looking for new sensory activities for kids! If you have any you’d like to share, please comment below!
Actress, model, active humanitarian, & Mom! Author of 'Everyday Chic'.