Do you ever notice that babies and toddlers would rather play with the odd makeup brush, an old spatula and the remote more than all the wonderful toys you have collected for them?
Why would you bother then?
It’s simple really. These kids are fascinated by the world around them. They don’t really need you to go out of your way to find interesting things for them. BUT if you do you might be surprised by what they latch on to. I mean have you ever REALLY inspected a loofa? Or thought about how cold and smooth a soup ladle is?
It doesn’t matter if it comes in a bin, box, tray or basket. Whatever you call them they all serve the same purpose.
Okay, But what is it?!
A discover basket is a collection of items usually grouped by some sort of theme for the kiddo to explore as they see fit. Often a textural, visual, or real world theme is how these are pulled together. Often these are an early sensory experience for babies or more of a loose parts invitation to play for toddlers.
Discovery baskets help to teach a baby about the world around them and help to teach toddlers classification. For example; everything in the tray is wooden even if they are different colors or all these things are balls even if they are different sizes.
How it works for us
I didn’t truly start discovery baskets until Bitty was a toddler. (All those wasted baby days! So sad. lol)
I find that these baskets work best when it is items that she doesn’t get regular access to but that are of course safe for her to play with. I also tend to put them out about mid toy rotations so she is starting to get a little stale with her play options and suddenly we inject some new life into playtime.
I’m always surprised by what items she latches on to. Her constant favorites are some silicone straws and a couple of old Mardi gras necklaces. What is something that your kids latched onto that you just don’t know why?
Have you ever done a Discovery basket? What was one that your kiddos loved?