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Sensory Development Activities for Toddlers

Toddlers love to explore things and sensory play is a great way to expose them to new experiences, materials and textures. Sensory activities, such as those focusing on the sense of touch, are a vital aspect of learning and it is incredibly calming for many toddlers.

It’s also a great way to strengthen those little hands and build fine motor skills. Just take your toddler outside and allow them to explore their five senses and you will be amazed by how much your toddler will love it. Additionally, it comes with several benefits such as:

    • Independent play skills
    • Math skills
    • Imagination
    • Tactile learning
    • Life skills
    • Fine motor skills
    • Developmental self-control
So, what are sensory activities?

Sensory activities involve any type of play of action that stimulates the senses. Actually, toddlers engage in sensory activities whenever they move, touch, jump, taste, see, hear or smell but you can give them a better dose of engaging with their senses by getting them involved in sensory activities.

But why should toddlers do sensory activities?

Good question. When toddlers engage in sensory activities, it improves their brain function and development, which is particularly important for toddlers. In the long run, it can make them better readers and stronger individuals as they grow up too.

Easy sensory development activities

Time consuming activities or complicated ones may not be the best option for toddlers. This is why you have the option of going for quick and fun sensory activities, such as those listed below:

    • Messy play

Making play dough, playing in the sandbox, finger painting or making mud pies in the backyard are all some ideas of messy play. Sure, the mess may be overwhelming, but toddlers benefit immensely from it from a sensory development point of view.

    • Sensory bins

Sensory bins or boxes are filled with a texture for the toddler to play in. It can contain anything from shaving cream to dry cornmeal. Put in some cups and plastic toys inside it to ensure that your toddler is getting a lot of tactile input to enhance their sensory processing.

    • Jumping on pillows

This is an incredibly fun activity where you pull the couch pillows off and get your toddler to crawl and jump over them. The sensory input they would get from jumping, crashing and climbing will also keep them thoroughly enjoyed. Other than pillows, a small trampoline can be used as well.

    • Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball requires the toddler to use their vision, learn balance and improve their hand-eye coordination. However, be sure to use a larger ball so the toddler finds it easier.

    • Climb the slide

Under very close supervision, allow your toddler to climb small slides and slide back down. It triggers the sensory system and helps improve core strength and motor planning.

    • Walk on bubble wrap

Use some tape to stick some bubble wrap on the floor for your toddler to walk and jump on it. Many senses are getting input over here: they can hear the popping sounds, feel the bubbles under the feet and improve the body’s ability to sense its location, movements, and actions.

When it comes to sensory development activities for toddlers, the sky really is the limit. You can experiment with some DIY activities and enjoy playing with your toddler. While it is definitely great for their development and growth, it also serves as a great opportunity for some precious bonding time.


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