When trying to entertain babies, parents want to buy them the newest toys that work on their motor and cognitive skills. For some parents, they spare no expense with what they buy for their kids because they want nothing but the best. But what these parents find is that it is the packaging that intrigues the babies more than the toy itself. And if it is not the packaging, it is babies losing interest quickly in the fancy toy for a household item that catches their eye. As such, parents can skip the toys and instead give babies household items that will entertain them for hours.
Until people have babies, they do not realize the treasure trove of items they have on hand that double as toys. But, when nothing seems to keep a baby’s interest and parents need little ones to occupy themselves for a moment, it is quickly learned just how beneficial kitchen, toiletry, and recyclable items are when it comes to making this happen. And from that point forward, many of these items are used with frequency to keep infants’ interest peaking.
Here are household items you can give babies that will entertain them for hours.
10 Measuring Spoons
Once used for baking, when people have babies, measuring spoons take on a new life. And that new life is that of a stacking device.
According toARK Therapeutic Products, when babies practice their stacking skills, it allows them to “stabilize their core” while working on their gross motor skills. But this does not mean that fancy stacking toys need to be purchased to achieve this. Instead, give babies measuring cups and spoons and watch them not only stack them but nest them as well. Both of which are beneficial to overall development.
9 Plastic Cups
Plastic cups may not be the best for the environment but if parents have some tucked away in the pantry, giving them to babies allows them to work on their stacking skills.
If babies have stacking down to a science, then giving them items to pick up using the pincer grasp is a way to add difficulty to the exercise by continuing to use household items to do so.
8 Filled Ziploc Bags
Parents take for granted how easy it is to open Ziploc bags. But, putting some of a baby’s favorite toys into a Ziploc and sealing it will make infants have to work to get the items out. And because it uses fine motor skills to open the bags, it will take some time to make this happen. Something that comes in handy for parents when trying to cook a meal, get dressed, or even use the restroom in peace.
7 Ice Cube Trays
For infants who are working on their pincer grasp, ice cube trays make for a great receptacle to transport items being picked up.
If babies like using a spoon, then giving them one to scoop up the objects makes the task a bit more difficult. And by continuing to make the task challenging, babies will not lose interest quickly. Instead, they will be determined to figure out how everything works. Something that cannot be said for all baby toys purchased.
6 Egg Carton
To make snack time into a game, all that is needed is some baby puffs and an egg carton. Both of which parents likely have around the house.
According to Baby Play Hacks, parents place a few puffs into each spot in the egg carton. Then, it is the baby’s job to take each puff out to eat.
By doing this, the pincer grasp and motor skills are being used. And the sooner that babies have these skills honed, the easier life becomes for them.
5 Wipes Containers
Babies love to pull tissues from a tissue box. As such, make one that they can use over and over again using household items.
According to A Spotted Pony, a faux tissue container is made using a wipes container and leftover fabric around the house cut into squares. Babies will work to not only open the container but then to pull each piece of fabric as well. Something that will keep little ones entertained for hours.
4 Muffin Tins
Muffin tins are a great household item for babies to use. And the best thing about it is how versatile they are when it comes to activities.
If parents give their babies muffin tins and a wooden spoon the tin can be turned upside down and drums are made. If babies are working on their motor skills, they can pick up and put objects into the tins. The possibilities are endless. And loads of fun is had by babies with no money spent.
3 Wooden Spoons
Wooden spoons are one of the best objects that babies can be given to play with. Of course, they are going to want to chew on it to determine what it is that they are playing with but once they have it figured out, let the fun begin!
From scooping up objects to playing drums, clapping the spoons together, or even painting with them, there are a lot of ways that wooden spoons can be used by babies. It truly is just a matter of imagination on the part of parents and babies alike as far as what will be done with the spoons for entertainment.
For those babies who are crawling along, using some pillows will make for a fun obstacle course that works on balance at the same time.
Depending upon how long babies have been crawling, parents will want to adjust the difficulty of the obstacle course accordingly. However, when have to crawl over the pillows, they are strengthening their babies core and their shoulders even more than they would by simply crawling alone. And because it is something different for babies to do, they will have so much fun figuring out how to navigate the course over and over again.
1 Salad Spinner
A great kitchen gadget that will hold babies’ attention for a decent amount of time is the salad spinner. This is especially true when babies figure out how to make it work.
Initially, it may be difficult for babies to manipulate the salad spinner. After all, they need to have the strength to push the button down to make the inside spin. But, once this is accomplished, the time will be spent making the whirring sound happen for an extended period because it is fun and because they can.
Source: ARK Therapeutic Products, Baby Play Hacks, A Spotted Pony