This afternoon, baby F and I enjoyed some special time on our own, and I decided to do what i have been meaning to do for ages and let her play with her very own sensory box (without the contents being snatched away and scattered around the house by older siblings before she has finished exploring).
This took a matter of minutes to put together, with literally no forward planning, and F loved it.
I wanted to keep it very simple so as not to overwhelm her, and for F to be able to play independently with it, so I kept small pieces out of it and stuck to a few simple items with interesting textures for her to explore in her own time. It looked something like this:
- A giant pipecleaner (fuzzy and bendy)
- An empty baby wipe packet – these are F’s favourite toy (she loves crinkling them), and inspired this home made sensory toy a few weeks ago.
- A big silky ribbon with a lovely bold spotty pattern.
- A Christmas tree decoration with a rough texture, a bit like sandpaper.
- An unused foot file / body brush which consists nicely of a wooden handle, a soft brush, and a rough edge.
- A silky bow from a soft toy.
- A square of ridged cord fabric
- A fleecy hat
I simply sat F down with the box in front of her and let her explore. She has been so sad recently, with teeth coming through, not sleeping well and really unsettled, so this is the most content I have seen her in days. I was struck again by the magic of sensory play. She explored the objects by herself for about half an hour, which in a six-month-old world is a very, very long time.
You can see here how happy she is.
The concentration on her little face – well, you can see how interested she is. And by such simple things we had lying around just waiting for her to explore them 🙂
All we need to do next is rotate the objects when they no longer hold her interest. I have already found:
- A flannel
- A body polisher
- An empty bottle (could be filled with pasta, coloured water, rice, beans, you name it – or just left as it is)
- A squidgy, squeezy rubber millipede
- A plastic spoon (she seems fascinated by these at mealtimes; more interested in fact than she is in the food)
- A small bean bag
- A small mirror
– and this is without looking particularly hard, or buying anything new. Whilst I try not to buy things especially for these boxes, this gave her such pleasure and is the one thing she can enjoy by herself, so I think this is one toy that would be worth an investment, and that if we run out of objects, the pound shop would replenish F’s box perfectly.
Disclaimer: Whilst I tried to find safe-ish objects, I was always in the room with F and she was supervised, albeit not as strictly as I would with small pieces, or with objects she could bite bits off. Never underestimate these little people’s ability to get into scrapes!