What’s all the fuss around sensory play???

Hello, Mommies and Daddies!

Sharing with you this week about: Sensory Play & Brain Development

It seems to be all over social media these days. What is all the fuss around sensory play? Why is it important?Sensory Play is ANY play that engages the senses of sight, smell, touch, taste, and sound. So it covers pretty much…everything, right? Yes it does! BUT…

We can help support their play experiences in such a way that their senses are more thoroughly engaged, by setting up types of play they don’t ordinarily encounter every day because of limitations of space, mess, and parental sanity (we kid not).

By presenting our children with a variety of sensory experiences, as well as the FREEDOM to explore, and discover, we help support their holistic development. Sensory play touches on cognitive skills, fine motor skills, gross motor skills, eye-hand coordination, body control and balance, spatial awareness, and language development, among other things!

Our little ones’ brains are rapidly expanding every single moment, which is why they simply absorb everything (whether we know it or not). Their senses are receptors, picking up, and processing the information they absorb, allowing for the building of neural pathways in the brain, which will assist them in learning in the future. These neural pathways have to be stimulated and used, and we take advantage of this special time in their lives when their brains are simply exploding with making these neural connections. This process of neural growth slows down, and only the connections that are used are retained.

You can imagine sensory play as an exercise in brain development, and such a fun type of exercise little ones willingly engage in! You can see those little connections being made and it’s thrilling to witness!

A wonderful example of sensory play at its best is through nature play, getting out in the grass or sand, walking over logs and watching water travel through creeks and streams. These times make it very challenging for us to take our kids out to experience these in nature, and good way around it are through sensory materials. This play set up provides the opportunity of presenting different mediums for our little ones to explore. They need not be expensive or elaborate—a simple bin filled with uncooked macaroni, and explored with measuring cups and tongs might keep some toddlers fascinated for a period of time (while expanding those minds). Playing with ice and paint or a simple tub of water with some floating toys all show cause and effect, and allows children to problem solve and create their own play ideas. We’ve previously discussed language development along side this kind of play, the benefit list is endless. It’s so much fun too!

We love sharing our play ideas with you and we hope that you’ve been trying them out at home. Most of the activities we post have been tried and tested our own little tots. Please follow us on our social media and drop us a line, it’s a wonderful way to connect until the time is safe to meet again.

Sharlyn & Marielle

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