Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Science for Babies - Make a Sensory Basket


When I think of science the first images that pop into my head are images of test tubes and bunsen burners, skeletons and space. But science is actually all around us and used every day with our senses. 

One of the first things we learn in science is about our senses and we start to learn these from birth. Our Senses are Touch, Smell, Taste, Sound, Sight. 

When Lily was only a few months old I started to put together a sensory basket for her. I started with a few touchy feel items and rattles and I added more and more as she got older. 

A Sensory basket is a great way for a baby to explore there senses and experience a range of exciting items that are new to them. As they get older they will understand more and more about the objects they are holding. Are they soft, hard, bright, dull, noisy or quiet. 


Now at nearly 16 months her sensory basket is packed full of items for her to explore. The only things we don't have in there are things for taste or smell.
Ive put all her old rattles in there and her contrasty books as she no longer plays with them on a regular basis, but they work great for a occasional sound making instrument 
to play with when we get the basket out. 



So here are a just a few ideas of what you can put in your basket. 


TOUCH 
Wash Cloths 
Sponges
Toothbrush
Nail Brush
Hair Brush
Sensory Balls
Bean bags
Wooden Spoons
Spatula 




SOUND 
Rattles
Drums
Musical instruments
Shakers
Rustling Sounding Paper
Bells




SIGHT 
Contrasting Books
Bright coloured toys / teddies
Mirror
Pictures
Sensory Tubes (seen in top of picture)








A lot of items can also be used for more than once sense. For example the some of the things you can touch, like a tooth brush, can also make a great sound if rubbed against something. Some of the musical instruments may have interesting things to look at like the blue drum we have with the balls inside. Or maybe the bean bags make a noise as you scrunch them. 

One of Lily's favourite things to do with things in the sensory basket is make noise. She loves the musical instruments and will often bang the drum we have with lots of the different items in the basket.


She also loves the Mirror that we have that is by Galt Toys who have a great range of items perfect for sensory boxes. She really like looking at herself in it and now will point to her nose while looking in the mirror. She also has given her self a few kisses while holding the mirror. Hence the lovely smear marks on it Haha. 


Not all items for the sensory basket have to be shop bought though. You can make things to put in yourself. One idea is to make sensory bottles. Here are 2 examples of ones we have. One is filled with pasta and so makes a great rattle noise, and the other is filled with water and sequins which looks really nice and interesting and is also great to shake. 


Lily Loves her sensory bottles and will often pull them out of the basket to play with. 


If you have never made a sensory basket for you child I really hope that I have encouraged you to want to make a one. But I must stress as a lot of the objects in the sensory basket are not toys, you must always make sure that your child is fully supervised when playing with them.

I would love to know your thoughts on sensory play.

Have you ever made a basket? What would you put in yours? 

Happy British Science Week!

48 comments:

  1. I used to love making sensory tubs for my kids when they where younger. My favourites where the coloured themed ones

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  2. I'd never thought of something like a sensory basket but it makes complete sense x

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  3. oh yes we had something the same as I had 3 under 3s and they used it a lot and loved it and learned so much

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  4. This sounds really interesting, I will share this post with my friend who's just had a baby! :)

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  5. My daughter is disabled with Hydrocephalus and loves sensory items and doing this is very good.

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  6. I actually made one for my little sister who is disabled and has special needs and she loves it. Up until recently she found it hard to use her sensory skills but she is getting better now.

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  7. This is very informative. Thanks for sharing this post.

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  8. Aw this is such a good idea. I like that it covers all of the senses. You've definitely covered everything that I could ever think to put in! xxx

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  9. This just goes to show you are never too young for science! How awesome :D

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  10. I love this idea! It's good to teach young children (esp girls imo) about science from a young age.

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  11. I have been reading a lot about sensory for babies recently, and there looks like there is everything you need in here. It's never too early for science!

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  12. I think sensory games and tasks are a great learning tool for babies. I'd be doing the same when I have children

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  13. This is fantastic! No matter what age they are, they can benefit from this kind of sensory exploration.

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  14. What a great idea, introducing science to babies as well as helping their development. Such a huge benefit! x

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  15. I highly recommend sensory boxes for little ones - love that age. I think I read somewhere that the recommended amount of items to have in at any one time is 5-6.

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  16. Aww I remember doing this with my son, he loved it!

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  17. This is a cute idea, the pasta in a bottle is the oldest trick in the book. So much fun and so simple

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  18. I've read so many articles about sensory baskets but never really gotten around actually doing one, I will get on it now and sort one out for our little lady

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  19. Its so important for kiddies to use their senses so a sensory basket is a great idea.

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  20. When we babysit our little granddaughter we try to entertain he with things we have around the house, so that our daughter does not have to lug a big bag of toys over to our house. We have made a sensory basket, but you've given us a few more ideas of what to use. The other thing we have made is a very primitive shape sorter out of a shoe box. We just cut a 2 different sized circles out of the lid, and gave our granddaughter balls in different sizes (golf balls & a tennis ball) to sort.

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  21. Great for exploratory play
    Don't have to be expensive -you've just proved that perfectly

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  22. Great for exploratory play
    Don't have to be expensive -you've just proved that perfectly

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  23. Love these ideas. Though my little one is too young to try this at the moment I am planning to do this when he is ready

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  24. my youngest grandchild loves going to sensory classes.

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  25. My youngest still loves her sensory/heuristic basket I made her when she was a baby. They are great fun for inquisitive minds aren't they and show imagination has no bounds. A lovely read!

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  26. This is a great idea. My 18 month old daughter Poppy has sensory issues and we have similar for her.

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  27. That's a lovely idea and a great experience for Lily .I suppose you could use a cloth sachet of dried lavender for smell if it was sewn tightly and securely . I suppose it would have to be replaced very often though! (Kim Styles)

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  28. I made a sensory bag for my little one and a box similar to this though it's contents keep changing. I add some metal spoons and pot lids too.

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  29. Since seeing this I have made a lovely sensory basket for my daughter who has developmental delay. I wish I could post photos x

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  30. Good idea - I'm sure some things will go missing though and turn up in the strangest places.

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  31. great ideas here my son might like some of them x

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  32. This is such a fabulous idea! I will definitely be making one of these for my daughter!

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  33. This is a brilliant idea!

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  34. Love these ideas

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  35. Fantastic idea. Just shows you don't really need lots of toys

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  36. This is a great post thankyou. I have a nearly 10 month old you've inspired me to create one of these for him.

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  37. I've done something similar for my baby :)

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  38. I love these ideas, i did something like this for my Son

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  39. Will be trying this with my little girl brilliant idea

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  40. Ashleigh Allan30 July 2017 at 17:01

    Great idea with lots of things in it

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  41. Great learning and fun, lovely....

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  42. great ideas ! show how important sensory play is x

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  43. Some really good sensory ideas in your basket.

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  44. These are fab for kids of all ages... you can adapt as they grow as to what you put in them. Were always a favourite when I worked in Nursery

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  45. My son is Autistic and I have made him a Sensory Basket which he loves!

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  46. My pre-schooler has really overcome various sensory issues by using a sensory basket. Those prickly balls are amazing. We have various sizes.

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