I'm Amelia! I'm a qualified early years professional, mum to 14 month old Lily and the founder of “Learn with Lily” sensory kits! I have worked and studied in Early Years settings for the last 18years which is where I really grew and developed my love of play based learning and all things sensory.
Each month I shall be sharing with you on the Baby Bear's Den play blog, simple activity ideas that you could try at home using ingredients you’ll no doubt have in store already.
My activity of choice for this month is Pea Play! Yes that’s right! Peas!!
Peas are infact a brilliant way to incorporate food based play into your home activities, keeping play taste safe whilst providing lots of opportunities for open ended learning. It’s also suitable for children from as little as weaning age as it helps to encourage positive relationships with food. (Just make sure you are confident they can orally manipulate peas before attempting this)
Simply dig out the frozen peas, cook up a large batch, drain off the water and then add to a low level dish or tray so that your little one is able to reach in and access it. It’s that easy.
Easy peasy infact!
There are lots of ways you can explore the peas together but my top tips for promoting learning and discovery would be:
picking up individual peas to strengthen fine motor movements and coordination ( this is infact called the pincer grip and perfecting this skill early is essential for mastering writing skills as they get older!)
Using simple scoops or spoons to transfer and fill empty containers ( great for promoting mathematical concepts such as emptying/ filling/ pouring/ excavation/ retrieving)
Explore the peas using whole hands and feet by squeezing, squashing, poking and splatting to ensure plenty of tactile stimulation
Add in pots, pans and cooking utensils to enhance imaginative skills and engage in role playing scenarios such by mixing, stirring and sieving.
Incorporate counting out loud and colour recognition as you play, to maximise the learning benefits of all those little peas you can see
Add some water to the tray and observe how the peas float and move in the water - then let the splashing commence!
Why not have a little taste too!? It’s all about the multi sensory experience after all!
I hope you like this one everyone - Have lots of fun little explorers!!
See you next month for another exciting activity for you to try at home!
Lots of Love,
Amelia at Learn with Lily