Splish, Splash- Water (and Sunshine!) Based Sensory Play

I think almost every toddle baby loves to play in the water, so this week we did some super fun (and soggy) water play activities! Don’t forget the sun block!

Bunch O Balloons: I am obsessed with these things! They come with 3 bunches of 35 water balloons that you just slap on your hose and they all fill up at the same time…AND they tie themselves when they’re full! Both of my kids love them and they’re so much fun to toss around on a hot summer day! Plus you can use the hose attachment for other activities (see below!)

Sprinkler/Car wash: I left the last Bunch O Balloons filling attachment on my hose and let the water fall on the boys as they played car wash. Then I let my toddler play with the hose and hold it himself- he loved exploring the reaction of the water as he moved the hose around!

ABC soup scooping practice: Since his big brother was doing ABC soup letter practice, I thought my toddler would enjoy playing with his own “soup” so I made him one too! He had a great time splashing in the water, dumping it out, scooping the letters out and putting them back in! You can talk about the color of the letters or their names in a casual way as they play- it’s never to early to start pointing them out!

Faded paper art: I did this with my preschooler but I’m sharing it here because I think a 2 year old would love it too- I’m an adult and I was pretty amazed (plus it’s easy enough for a toddler to set up!). Just take a piece of construction paper (we used Crayola brand and it worked great!), place some toys on it and leave it in the sunshine all day. The sunlight fades the paper leaving behind a silhouette of the toys!

Color change slime: This was SO COOL and insanely easy to make- did you know they have this magic thing called “slime activator” that you just mix with glue and presto-changeo you have slime?! It’s more expensive than contact solution and baking soda (it ran about $6), but this one had little “crunchies” in it, so I thought we’d give it a try! We used Elmer’s color change glue to make the slime and it was amazing to watch it go from purple to blue and back again! I think I had more fun playing with it than the boys (particularly my toddler who doesn’t like his hands messy- I ended up giving it to him in a Ziplock bag later and he liked it far better that way!)

DIY water table: For this one we just dumped out one of our storage bins in the closet onto the bed, filled it with water and scooping toys and let the kids play! They both loved it and my toddler stayed occupied for like 45 minutes! They also love playing in a sand bucket full of water, or if it’s a rainy day, in the kitchen sink!

BUBBLES: Both of my boys love bubbles- blowing them, chasing them, popping them- so I decided to get creative with the DIY bubble wands and just go play! I’m going to list them below with captions on the pictures describing how to make them-

Bubble Snake Maker
Cut off the end of a water bottle, attach a piece of felt to the end using a few rubber bands, dip it in bubble solution and blow to create 2 to 3 foot long bubble snakes! This one was definitely our favorite!
Bunch O Balloons Mini Bubbles
We used the filling attachment from our bunch o balloons as a bubble blower! It makes a whole bunch of really small bubbles!
Giant Bubble Maker
Cut the end off of a water bottle and use it to blow bubbles bigger than your head!

Supply/Shopping list:

  • color change glue
  • slime activator (we got the “crunchy” kind)
  • Large plastic tupperware bin (or kiddy pool/sink/sand bucket)
  • ABC magnets
  • Large bowl
  • scooping instruments
  • water play toys
  • bubbles
  • bunch o balloons
  • hose
  • old water bottle (the kind you usually recycle)
  • washcloth or small square of fabric
  • rubber band
  • bowl or pie pan
  • toys with interesting shapes

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