We're all about cheap and cheerful toys in this household. We don't have the space or inclination to buy a whole bunch of stuff. We strongly dislike plastic & battery operated toys and a lot of wooden toys are just out of our price range. So I focus on making toys when and where possible.
This is one of the simplest "toys" I have made. All you need is a tray, a basket, some pom-poms and a pair of tongs. I set the invitation up with the pom-poms in the basket and the tongs alongside. Felix empties the pom-poms onto the tray and then uses the tongs to pick them up and pop them back into the basket.
|Examining the tongs and figuring out the best way to hold them|
|Getting better control of opening and closing the tongs|
|Noticing all the clicks of the camera shutter|
|Obviously the camera is hilarious and I'm very distracting|
|Moved the basket off the tray to pick up errant pom-poms. |
He's reaching pro status now, picking up two pom-poms at once.
|Placing the basket back on the tray.|
|Placing the tongs back on the tray|
|All tidied away, now he's coming for the camera!|
We first tried this activity a few months ago. Felix couldn't quite get the hang of the tongs, though he did try. I think his hands were just a little small! I packed it away and forgot about it for a while. At 24 months, after a minute or two of experimenting, he easily got the hang of it. He really enjoyed it and has repeated this activity a few times since.
I'm planning to put this into our regular rotation of toys but I'll switch out the pom-poms next time for a bit of difference. I'm planning to try coloured ice cubes for a different texture, and as Felix gets better we'll progress to smaller items like pasta shapes or broad beans. Eventually we can use a smaller tongs and then a tweezers.
I'd love to hear if you try this activity. Was it a hit? What other objects do you use?