Activities for babies and toddlers
Fill a large container with a variety of accessories and empty soap bottles. Children will enjoy exploring empty shampoo, body wash, and dishwashing liquid bottles. Add dishcloths, facecloths, and laminated pictures of different types of soap. Let babies and toddlers manipulate the empty bottles as an introduction to this soap theme.
ROUTINES AND TRANSITIONS
A clean table
After lunch, invite babies and toddlers to help you wash the table. Spray soapy water on the table and give each child a small cloth. They will enjoy scrubbing the table with you.
During diaper changes, take a few minutes to combine a few drops of liquid soap with lukewarm water in your hands. Massage children's hands and feet. Rinse well.
SENSORY ACTIVITIES (smell)
Scented hand washing
Purchase liquid soap with a strong scent. When you help children wash their hands, hold their hands close to their nose and encourage them to notice the scent.
SENSORY ACTIVITIES (touch)
Soap bubble bin
Soap bubbles are fun for little ones. Pour a very small quantity of water in the bottom of a large container. Add bubble bath and stir vigorously to create a thick layer of soap bubbles. Hide toys among the bubbles. Let babies and toddlers plunge their hands in the bubbles to find the objects.
ARTS & CRAFTS
Let toddlers paint their own faces. Note that red and black makeup is more difficult to wash off, it may therefore be best to avoid these two colors. Offer small mirrors. After a while, encourage children to wash off the makeup using a facecloth moistened with lukewarm water. Repeat as many times as you wish.
Variation with dolls
Face painting on dolls is an activity that is perfect for babies and toddlers. At the end of the activity, have children clean the dolls by bathing them in a small tub or sink or simply with moistened facecloths.
Here is a recipe for body and bath paint that was created by Caroline Allard.
- ¼ cup of tear-free baby shampoo
- 1 tablespoon of cornstarch
- 2 to 3 drops of food coloring
- An ice cube tray
- Combine baby shampoo and cornstarch in a bowl.
- Add a few drops of food coloring.
- Divide the mixture among the ice cube tray sections (this will make it possible to create several colors if desired).
- Children can paint their body using their fingers or a paintbrush.
To be used outdoors in the summer (with a small swimming pool nearby for easy cleanup).
Safe for use on faces.
MORAL AND SOCIAL ACTIVITIES
This is a great imitation activity that allows little ones to perform a common task. Fill a container with soap and water. Let babies and toddlers scrub plastic dishes using tiny dishcloths and sponges. Show older children how to dry the dishes when they are done.
Purchase several small soaps in different colors. For example, you may buy fruit-shaped soaps. Have fun admiring and naming the pretty colors. Variation: Smell the soaps and name the different scents.
Liquid and solid
Introduce children to the difference between liquids and solids. Invite them to wash their hands using liquid soap. Later in the day, give them a bar of soap they can use to wash their hands. Both types of soap offer interesting sensations for little hands.
PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND MOTOR SKILLS
During summer months, fill large buckets with soapy water and deposit them in the yard. Invite babies and toddlers to wash fences, slides, swings, etc.
It's raining bubbles
To encourage children to move their entire body, have fun creating tons of bubbles. Invite older children (or parents) to help you blow as many bubbles as possible.
Learning to stir and whisk
Fill a container with a small quantity of water. Pour bubble bath in the water. Give babies and toddlers whisks. Show them how to stir and whisk the water to create bubbles. If you wish, you may also add tiny containers. Children will enjoy filling and emptying them over and over again.
To encourage children to speak, create an original soap-themed picture book. Collect pictures of bathing babies, animals taking a bath or washing themselves (a cat licking itself, a bird in a birdbath, a dog in a tub, etc.), two people washing dishes, and pictures of colourful soap. Simply glue them on construction paper and laminate.
Early childhood educator
No element of this text may be copied,
reproduced, distributed, published, translated, downloaded, posted, or
transmitted, in any way, without prior written authorization from
Educatall and the copyright holder. Elements may be posted and/or
downloaded solely for personal and non-commercial use provided no
modifications are made and all notices of intellectual property are
fully shown (name of the author, title of the article, name of the
website, date the text is used and the date of the part in question).