Sunday, 26 July 2015

"Crystal Maze" box

Sometimes it's funny - I do an activity for Iz and completely underestimate how much D will like it. This is a prime example!

I've written about baby-specific sensory play before (for example the ribbon play for babies) and I do try to do activities that both her and D can enjoy, but invariably there's a lot more scope to do things with D so sometimes I feel bad that she gets left out... so it's nice to make something specially for her.

All you need is a shoebox and some string/wool.
Punch some holes in the box and thread the wool in what ever pattern you want.
Simple :)

Ooooo what's this?

Then add a few objects to the box and let your baby have fun trying to get them out!

Trying to get the duplo blocks

Balancing a giraffe on a string crossroads

She quickly worked out it was easier to get to things when the box was on it's side...

Yep it even got used as a giant shoe!

D quickly adopted the box as "Elsa's bed" and we all had to be quiet whilst Elsa slept... I'm never going to complain about D enforcing quiet time on everyone!! Lol

"Ssshhhhh Elsa's in the box!"

After they'd both played with it for a few days I decided to make it a bit more challenging and added another layer of wool below the first so there was now 2 layers of criss-crossed strings. This introduced a whole new layer of complexity and it was very cute watching Iz explore how much harder it was to reach the bottom now.

Showing her how it's done :)

Uh oh she's trying to get Elsa!!

Adept at getting past multiple string layers now


So there it is - a very simple sensory play idea that's enjoyed by both babies and toddlers. You could easily make it harder by having even more additional wool layers as each one will add to the complexity of the movements they need to do to reach the toys. It is great fine motor practice, logical thinking, task flexibility and problem solving (lots of executive function skills) - who knew a shoe box could be so educational?!

PS. If you're wondering about the name I chose for the box then you are obviously either too young to remember the Crystal Maze or aren't from the UK!

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