Fun activities to safely explore and learn while in the bath tub
Bathing is an essential part of a child’s daily routine. Why not jazz up your bath time routine with some fun activities that will aid in your child’s overall development? We asked our licensed therapists to give us a list of their go-to bath time activities that aid in the development of motor skills and sensory integration.
Please note that bath safety is of the upmost importance. Accidents can happen in an instant and it is VITAL that all children be supervised by a parent or caregiver whenever they are in or near water. Young children lack coordination and strength which can make it easier for them to slip in the tub. Consider using a slip resistant plastic mat that suctions to the bottom of the tub to provide more traction during bath time and reduce the risk of slipping. Also, regulate your bath temperature and make sure it is always less than 120 degrees.
Now that we’ve discussed basic bath time safety, let’s get to the fun stuff! Here is a list of simple activities to try during bath time to stimulate your child’s overall development:
1-Fishing for letters or objects: Drop magnetic ABC letters in a bathtub. Use a fishing pole with a magnet tied to the end to let your children fish for the letters. This works on letter identification AND fine motor skills. If the letters are different colors, have the child find the “blue” letter or “red letter” to help with color awareness.
2-Bath time painting: Use water color paint and a paint brush to paint your bathtub walls during bath time. This inspires their creativity and fine motor skills. Ask your child to follow simple commands such as “draw a yellow circle” to build their listening skills.
3-I spy-Drop water friendly objects/toys into the bathtub and have your child find the object you describe. (i.e. find the animal with a tail that says “woof”). This helps develope their language skills and understanding. Then, Ask your child to describe an object for YOU to find.
4-Ice Fishing-Freeze simple toys in ice. Drop them in the water and have your child try to catch them! This is a great sensory experience AND works on fine motor skills.
5-Shaving cream bath painting: Use shaving cream as paint for a great sensory experience.
6-Bath “Simon Says”- Have your child follow commands with toys and actions such as “put in, take out, put up, put under, spin around, hide” during bath time to work on your child’s listening skills for overall comprehension and following multi-step directions.
7-Pool noodle blocks-Slice pool noodles into small sections and use them as stacking blocks to work on those fine motor skills. Cut up a different color pool noodles and have the child find the noodle by color, then stack them in a tower to build listening skills.
8-Bubbles in the bathtub: Blowing bubbles with a bubble wand while in the bath tub! This works on breath support and fine motor skills for holding the bubble wand.
Bath time can be a really fun experience for children AND their parents. If your child is struggling or cries often during bath time, it may be because your child is struggling with the sensory experience that bath time presents. If you are concerned with your child’s development, please call our office to speak with one of our licensed therapists at 704-821-0568.