While there are endless toy options available for toddlers, parents know that kids somehow always prefer either regular items like boxes, bottles, etc. Despite an abundance of toys, Bug loves playing with kitchen items and "cooking" more than almost anything. She also loves scooping things--usually whatever meal I've served her off of her plate. Because toddler.
I bought a plastic baby pool at the beginning of summer hoping to have a lot of water play opportunities. The weather hasn't really been hot enough to accommodate, so we needed to find another use for it. Bug had been asking for a while to play with a bag of beans she found in a box while we were unpacking her room. We'd done some sensory play in our last house and the beans always ended up every.where.
Plastic pool to the rescue! We had an open morning recently so I put the pool in the backyard, gave Bug a bucket of dry beans, an empty bucket and various "tools," and she went to town! She spent a good 30 minutes scooping beans from one bucket to another, into cups and bowls, then starting over. The simplest things are always the biggest hit, right? Bonus points for the sensory experience and the strengthening of a number of motor skills.
The next time you need to entertain your little one, or you need a little break during the day, just hand your kiddo a bucket of beans! Easy, cheap, and if you have a pool to contain the mess clean-up is a breeze. (**Please exercise caution and know your child when it comes to putting things in his/her mouth.)
While you can use things like spoons, small cups, measuring cups, and small bowls, Bug really loves
- these silicone popsicle molds
- these toddler tools