Thursday, July 14, 2011

Water Play Wonderland!

To celebrate being able to play outdoors again after three days of being stuck inside with air quality warnings and heat advisories, I created as many fun water play activities as I could think of yesterday! Ty had been seriously upset about not being able to go outside (try explaining air pollution to a 22 mos old!) so I wanted to make it up to him. He had a blast!

First we had his water table with some new and old toys and containers, and I also filled it with dish soap bubbles! We don't do bubble baths due to urinary tract infection concerns, so the concept of playing with soap bubbles was new to him.

We also used an old Brita pitcher full of water tinted with food coloring. I provided a few different containers to put the water into. We started with red water then made blue. The water was barely tinted when out of the pitcher, but I was scared to use too much and stain our clothes. 

I filled his baby pool with water and fun toys. Not new, but added to the theme!

I filled-up some water balloons for him to use for the first time.

I also provided some chalk to chalk on the wet driveway with, though I can't say these were used for more than ten seconds!

I also planned to let him play with the hose to see what he would do, as well as to squirt him with it myself!

His favorite activity proved to be the Brita pitcher, which didn't surprise me at all. He loved putting water into different containers, dumping the big container on the driveway and pouring the smaller containers back into the pitcher. I caught him filling a small cup under the Brita faucet too, which made me think about a pitcher for his own water in the kitchen. I realized while he was playing that the funnel and giant water bottle would fit perfectly under the faucet and he enjoyed doing this after I showed him. I typically don't step-in and invade his play when he's so focused,  but once in a while I slip in fast to demonstrate something new if I think it's worth it.

I wish I could have captured his face when I put the hose in his water table to activate the dish soap; he was amazed! He often decided to take handfulls of the bubbles and put them into his baby pool. He filled and dumped with several containers, used his water wheel as well as a parmesan cheese container. He knows from a milk jug with slits cut in it that we play with in the bathtub (couple pics of this are below as well), that if you put something that has holes in it under water, it will bubble and fill, then you can lift it and create a shower effect. He spent a god chunk of time experimenting with that.

The water balloons didn't last long! I didn't get a chance to show him what to do with them so he took them out, dropped them on the driveway, and they instantly popped. He wasn't quite sure what that was all about and just moved on without much interest. Next time I will demonstrate things like playing catch or throwing them in the grass or other containers. I disposed of the balloon pieces immediately as they are choking hazards.

His baby pool was mostly just fun to sit in for a moment then get in and out of constantly, but he did play with some of the toys, stomped around, liked putting objects in the floating box (wipes container), and put bubbles from his water table into it to watch them float around.

I didn't really know what Ty would do when I handed him the hose, and he surprised me a bit with how much he experimented with it. He would have played with it the rest of the day if I didn't eventually turn the water off! He enjoyed filling containers, trying to stop the water with a hand or foot, holding the hose at different angles, spraying me a bit, and watching the river of water he was creating go down our driveway.

Of course, when he dropped the hose and decided to do something else for a moment, I had to turn the hose on him! We did this a few weeks ago on a whim and he couldn't get enough! So many giggles!

What fun ways have you found to play with water this summer?

1 comment:

  1. My 23 month old daughter *loves* water play. Whether it's playing with a little water in the sink or filling up the kiddy pool outside, she loves it. One of her favorites if to just fill my mop bucket (outside) with water and then play with scooping and pouring water from one container to another. It's definitely nice on these hot hot days!