Sensory Water Play to Beat the Summer Heat

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As far as summer activities go, sensory water play is one of my favorite things to do with my baby. With one heat wave after another, I found myself searching for creative ways to keep my adorable little munchkin cool and entertained outdoors.

Unfortunately, we don’t have ready access to a pool, so I needed to look for alternatives. I came across the delightful world of sensory water play, which proved to be very popular with my little one and a great way to beat the hot summer weather.

What is Sensory Water Play?

Imagine a mini aquatic wonderland where your baby can explore, discover, and play to their heart’s content while cooling off! Sensory water play is all about creating a sensory-rich experience in a baby pool or a large plastic bin filled with water, textures, and toys. Your little one can dip their toes or dive right in. Either way, they’re in for a wet and fun treat!

I love exposing my little one to all kinds of sensory experiences as early as possible. Due to the setup and cleanup involved, I won’t do water play every day but will add it to our daily sensory activities when it is particularly hot!

Setting the Stage for Aquatic Fun

Creating a sensory water play zone is a breeze. And the best part is that it doesn’t need to break the bank. This activity is best for infants who can sit up alone but aren’t avid walkers yet – roughly 6-18 months of age.

Here’s how you can set up the ultimate water adventure for your baby using just simple household items.

  1. Baby Pool or Plastic Bin: Choose a shallow baby pool or a sizeable plastic bin that’s comfortable for your baby to sit and play in. Make sure it’s safely placed on a flat and stable surface.
  2. Fill ‘Er Up: Time to unleash the H2O! Fill the baby pool or plastic bin with just enough water to ensure your baby’s safety and comfort. Remember, they’re little, so just 2-3 inches of water will do the trick.
  3. Floating and Non-Floating Toys: Spice up the aquatic party with an assortment of floating toys. We’ve added colorful balls, a pouring cup and plastic bottles to float around. Add some non-floating toys like water-safe rings and teethers for variety and to keep those little hands busy!
  4. Texture Bonanza: Make it an ultimate sensory experience by adding various textures to the water. Toss in some squishy sponges and soft fabrics for added water fun.
  5. Safety First: Always keep a watchful eye on your baby during water play. Never leave them unattended, even if the water level is shallow. Keep the pool out of direct sunlight to avoid too much sun exposure.

The Benefits of Sensory Water Play

With everything set up, I gently placed my baby into the pool, and watched her go! She was immersed in a world of sensory exploration, giggling, and splashing with pure joy.

Not only is sensory water play a fantastic way to beat the summer heat, but it also offers a plethora of benefits for your baby:

  1. Sensory Stimulation: Water play engages all their senses. The touch of water, the sound of splashes, and the vibrant colors of the toys create a sensory wonderland.
  2. Motor Skill Development: Reaching for toys, splashing, and pouring water helps develop your baby’s motor skills and hand-eye coordination.
  3. Language Development: Narrate the watery escapades and describe the textures and toys, boosting your baby’s language skills.
  4. Bonding Time: Engage in the water play with your little one. Share giggles and create precious moments and a stronger bond.
  5. Coping with the Heat: Sensory water play is the ultimate summer savior, keeping your baby cool and happy even on the hottest days.

Let the Water Fun Begin!

Our sensory water play adventure turned out to be a hit! Whether your baby splashes with glee or simply gazes in awe at the floating toys, this activity is sure to be a summer hit. My baby’s laughter echoed as she explored the toys and textures and splashed water everywhere. From touching the squishy sponges to chasing floating toys, every moment was filled with happiness and wonder.

As the summer heat continues, I know that sensory water play will remain our go-to activity for staying cool and having fun. So, fellow moms and caregivers, I urge you to try this refreshing activity with your little ones. Remember to capture those priceless moments and share them with family and friends to spread the joy of this fantastic summer activity. Let the water sensory fun begin! Happy splashing! 🌊👶😊

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About The Author

Julia Billings

Hi, I'm Julia! I am a working mother, matricentric life, career & business coach, ex-international HR expert, and motherhood studies practitioner. In my work as a coach, consultant and facilitator, I help other moms tackle negative emotions such as guilt, fear, anger, and overwhelm and create a roadmap for their lives, businesses and/or careers, so they can mother with confidence and focus on family life first.

My approach integrates my experience as an international career & leadership development professional, my personal journey as a mother, and my certifications as a Certified Professional Coach (CPC), Motherhood Studies Practitioner, and a Master's in Education.

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