Wow! We are already at the end of our first activity plan from the Leaping Lilies curriculum; Bath Time! We’ve had a lot of fun learning over the past two weeks….and boy are we (and our dolls) clean! Today’s post demonstrates how to turn any simple, one dimensional activity (like a craft) into a whole-learning experience. (Meaning that all areas of development are being challenged or addressed in a meaningful way)
On alternating Fridays I blog about the final activity of our current theme
This week’s Theme:Bath Time
Activity Description: Make a soap fish to use in the bath
This Activity’s Main Area of Development: Language, creative, cognitive, fine motor, gross motor, social, emotional
O&M’s Ages (at the time of posting this): 2 years + 4 months
Lets get started!
- Make your soap fish!
You will need:
- Wash cloth
- Bar of soap (oval shaped works best)
- Craft foam sheets
- Elastic band
- Piece of lace or ribbon
- Needle & thread (or crazy glue… I tried it for ease and speed – it seemed to work just fine)
- Use this activity to create a whole-learning experience
The entire process encourages self-expression and conversation. Teach new words as they come up in context. Make conversation around the parts that your tot finds interesting or curious. Ask questions that require an opinionated response.
Have your tot take participate in the creative process (as much as possible). My girls chose the materials; the cloths, the colours for each of the foam elements, the ribbon and they helped assemble the fish.
Fine Motor Skills:
Gross Motor Skills:
Encourage your tots to wash themselves. Give them instructions that are more physically challenging for them. (Such as, wash the back of your neck, under your arms, the bottoms of your feet, use the opposite hand)
Obviously your tot should never be left alone in or near a bath but there are elements of bath time that can be used to encourage self-reliance (such as, undressing independently, testing the water before getting in to see if it is suitable and self-washing). Parts of the activity also help to develop patience (such as, waiting for and adult to do certain parts before they can continue). This is also the appropriate age to start learning the importance of personal hygiene. (What is it? Why is it important?)
In our case, this activity provided exposure to new situations/activities because I am NOT overly competent with a needle and thread so it was something different for them to see me doing. Also, I’m pretty sure they have never seen a bar of soap before (only liquid). In story books, the soap is always pictured as a bar of soap and they are always confused when I tell them that the image/drawing is soap!
First there is the sensory component (touching/feeling all the different materials, choosing colours, smelling the soap..and yes, one of them even tasted it, despite my warnings). It is also necessary to follow instructions (several multi-step instructions) to complete this! Finally, this is a great activity to develop awareness of sequencing (first, next, last) because this is a step by step process that is completed in a specific order.
The girls really enjoyed using the soap fish to wash themselves but, I chose not to share pictures of the girls in the bath.