7 artistic activities for sensory play in child care

7 artistic activities for sensory play in child care

As a childcare worker, you want to do your very best to enhance your children’s development. A great way to achieve this is by incorporating sensory play into your daily activities.

Sensory play has an integral role in children’s development by enabling them to explore the world in different ways. It has numerous benefits including:

  • Building confidence
  • Encouraging creativity
  • Improving physical skills
  • Supports brain development
  • Can have a calming effect
  • Promotes exploration and a willingness to learn and discover

It is also a fundamental way of teaching young children to problem solve using their five senses as a guide.

We’ve rounded up seven artistic activities that you can use in child care centres, family day care or any classroom to develop children through sensory play in child care.

Play dough with lemon rind
Take your normal play dough to the next level by adding lemon zest to the mix. By playing with this play dough, your children will be using their sense of touch, smell and sight.

Smelly jars
This fun activity involves taking five separate jars and filling each with something with a strong scent. Vanilla essence, peppermint, lemon and cinnamon are good jar fillers. Ask the children to close their eyes, smell what’s in the jar and guess what it is.

Fabric sticks
Take paddle pop sticks and cover them with different textured fabrics and materials. Examples of good textures to use are silk, cotton balls, denim, velvet, sandpaper and carpet.

Finger painting
Finger painting is a fantastic way to stimulate children’s senses. It combines the senses of sight and touch and also allows children to express their creativity through art.

Musical statues
Not only is musical statues great fun, but it is also a sensory play activity! Musical statues is the perfect way to get children physically moving while stimulating their senses of touch and sound.

Cotton balls in water
This activity is as easy as it sounds. Simply fill a bowl or tray with water and throw in a couple of cotton balls. Children will use their senses of touch, sight and sound during this activity as they watch the cotton balls absorb water and learn as they squeeze the cotton balls and hear the water trickle out.

Animal noises
Print out images of animals and place around the room. Now, ask the children to make the sound of the animal you point to. Conversely, you can make an animal sound and ask the children to name the animal whose sound they hear.

Get creative by adapting these ideas or create a list of your own and enjoy all the benefits of sensory play in child care.

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