SENSORY PLAY ACTIVITIES:
Colored Oats – 6m+
Ice Ice Baby: 6m+ or when they can sit up and hold things
Bubble Wrap Walk Way – age 6m+ or as soon as they can crawl
Water Play – age 5m+ or as soon as they can sit up
What is sensory play and why should you do it?
Sensory play for babies is basically any activity that allows your baby (or any toddler or kid) to safely explore using any combination of their senses.
THESE ARE THE BODY’S SENSORY SYSTEMS:
the auditory system – the sense of hearing
the olfactory system – the sense of smell
the oral sensory system – the sense of taste
the vestibular system – how we sense where our bodies are in space
the proprioceptive system – our sense of the way our bodies move
the tactile system – the sense of touch
the visual system – the sense of sight
the interoceptive system – the general sense of our body’s physical condition, such as hunger, thirst, and internal discomfort.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF SENSORY PLAY FOR BABIES?
By providing a variety of baby-friendly, open-ended activities through a variety of every-day materials, they have the opportunity to discover how their senses work through imagination-based play and new experiences.
Research has shown that sensory play for babies actually plays an important role in the development of babies’ brains and bodies, building nerve connections in the brain’s pathways, which lead to the child’s ability to complete more complex learning tasks. (source)
Sensory play supports their coordination, dexterity, and muscle strength. They increase fine motor skills when they have the opportunity to manipulate materials in a variety of ways. (source)
It enhances their vocabulary as they learn various sensory attributes such as hot, cold, slimy, wet.