Sunday, 30 March 2014

Exploring the Sea Toddler Activities

Under the sea themed toddler activities
Happy Monday everyone! Before we get on to today's topic, I just want to quickly get something out there - today is daylight savings time in the Netherlands. I finally managed to get my behind out of bed before the rest of my family ( at 5am) for the first time in just short of a week. I'm tired. If this post is a little jumbled, please bear with me, the coffee isn't even ready yet! I've also been working on some behind the scenes stuff on the blog and if the format is wonky or things look a bit strange, please do let me know! 

Okay, now, let's get onto the good stuff! I have so many fun activities to share with you guys, and for once, I don't feel underwhelmed by what we managed to accomplish.



Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

Muffin tin toddler activity

This muffin tin activity was a hit. I continued on with our  blue and green theme and filled the tin with materials that we had on hand: 


Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities 


Then I taped it up. Very thoroughly so we could put those fine motor skills to work.

Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

At first, he was unsure of what to make of it, and poked at the materials he could see. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

And then, he saw that underneath the clear tape, there were fun things to explore! He went to work removing all that tape! Look at him go:

Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

He also had a blast pouring the materials into a bowl, and talking about what we discovered underneath the tape. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

Sorry for the mess, folks! You can tell that it was a busy Tot School day by all of the extra stars on the table, the mess on the floor, etc. That happens. A lot, but we're busy making memories! 

Anyhow, this activity was very successful. We really had a blast and I know I'll be doing something like this again, maybe even this week. The Toddler was entertained by it for about an hour and we got to work on developing all of these skills:
  • Fine motor skills
  • New vocabulary: star, bead, shell, soft, tape, sticky, paper
  • Color recognition (blue and green) 
  • Sensory exploration
This idea was inspired by Amber at Rick a Bam Boo.

Sensory play 

I set up three under the sea themed sensory activities: 

A wet sand mixture 


Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

This consisted of grated chalk, water, and flour.

Water 


Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

Homemade sand


Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

You can visit my post about this activity for the homemade sand recipe.

The Toddler typically loves sensory activities and these were no different - he had so much fun! We kept the sand out and played with it the next day. The Toddler spent about forty five minutes playing with the water and wet sand until he and everything around us was soaked! 



Under the sea felt board


I quickly made up this simple felt board that we used to practice counting. I glued down a few sea shells, the sun, some seaweed, and the treasure chest in the corner that opens up to reveal a small gold collection. 

 Under the sea felt board

The Toddler was supposed to put the corresponding number of crabs underneath each number. He couldn't get it, but I helped him and we practiced talking about the numbers, counting to three, and talked about all of the aspects of the board. 

Sand colouring arts and crafts activity 


This was a very well received activity, but the mess - oh the mess! We had sand everywhere. I mean, it was worth it, but be prepared. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

I purchased a few little packages of colorful sand (definitely going to make it at home next time), got out a glue stick, and a page from a coloring book. The Toddler put some glue on the paper (with my help still), then dumped the colorful sand over it. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: under the sea toddler activities

Our final product proudly on display for Daddy to see when he gets home from work: 


This is definitely happening again, but with homemade sand or glitter, and perhaps printables, too so that they match our weekly theme. We practiced and fostered:

  • Vocabulary: pink, orange, green blue, fish, water, seaweed 
  • Sensory play from exploring the sand
  • Creativity 
  • Higher thinking skills 
I love that exposing kids to arts and crafts helps to encourage their self esteem, their cognitive and emotional development, along with non verbal communication! I loved drawing, arts and crafts, and doing all sorts of nifty little projects as a child. I'm so glad that I can do the same for my son. 

In addition to these activities, we also spent quite a bit of time outside, going on walks or to a park near our home. The Toddler loves being outdoors and I'm so happy that the weather here is gorgeous. However, here in Holland, a beautiful spring tends to mean a summer spent wearing my winter coat, so while I am loving all of the sun we are getting, I'm getting nervous about what the summer time will be like. We'll see! 

Would you like to see more Tot School ideas? Stop by my Tot School Pinterest board for some Pinspiration: 


For more fantastic Tot School posts, visit the Tot School Gathering Place, hosted by Carisa at 1plus1plusequals1

Tot-School-Gathering-Place_thumb1

Thank you so much for reading, 
Yuliya