Sensory exploration is important at all stages of development and there is no reason that can’t include infants. It is true that most infants will put things straight in their mouth. Guess what they are doing? Sensory exploration! Keeping this in mind, we will use mainly things that are edible for infants under a year old. But please use common sense on keeping watch over your little one.
Erin from Chronically Sick Manic Mother shares five easy sensory baby activities her infant loves that are great sensory explorations for children under a year old.
This post is part of the Sensory Summer series, hosted by The Jenny Evolution in partnership with The Sensory Spectrum. I encourage you to follow us all summer and visit our Sensory Summer landing page to get the latest sensory fun for your kiddos! This post contains affiliate links.
5 Easy Sensory Baby Activities
1. Scarf play
Scarves can be easily washed and are unlikely for an infant to swallow. They are light and easily moved around. Babies capable of grasping can hold and play with scarves. As they get older you can do more and more things. Peek-a-boo isn’t as scary when they can still see you. Scarves are wonderful visual and tactile sensory items.
2. Baby food sensory play
There is bound to be a jar of baby food that your baby does not enjoy. By dumping it out on the tray of the high chair, they now have a tactile sensory item. They can mash it between their fingers. They can spread it around the tray. Best part is afterwards its straight into a bath for even more sensory play with water.
3. Real Food
Real food is great to explore with not only for the textures but also the smell! Instead of balls use oranges, lemons, and limes. They smell different, they roll different and all three have different textures. While not exactly pleasant the rinds won’t actually hurt them and even contain some nutrients. Large carrots and parsnips are great for teething six month olds and up. Throw them in the refrigerator for a cold treat on those budding teeth. Out to eat with friends with baby? Let them play with a baguette. The outer part is hard enough they will enjoy working on it and chances are by the time they actually get any bread it is a soggy mess and easily swallowed.
4. Go outside!
Very young babies can enjoy being on a blanket with their feet touching the grass. Such a fun new thing touching their feet! As they learn to sit up this is also a fun activity and it gets you out of the house! Keeping an eye that they don’t put it in their mouth, but let them play with it and crinkle it in their little hands. Crawling on a blanket spread over some grass is also a new fun sensory experience for a crawling infant.
Sand is fun outside and even inside too. Playground sand can be bought at any home improvement store, a simple storage container and a tarp is all you need. Even infants that are not crawling will enjoy their feet being put in the sand. Digging their little toes around. As they get grow and start sitting, of course they will end up eating some. What a new texture to have in their mouth. Playground sand is nontoxic and keeping it in a storage container will keep out any animals or bugs.
Of course, if you live in Florida like we do there is sand everywhere.
Chronically Sick Manic Mother is about life with chronic illnesses while also being a parent and a wife and how all the little things turn into big things, so it all matters! One kid, one husband, one dog, three cats. Insanity!
Sensory Summer Series
This post is part of the Sensory Summer series, hosted by The Jenny Evolution in partnership with The Sensory Spectrum. I encourage you to follow us all summer and visit our Sensory Summer landing page to get the latest sensory fun for your kiddos!