Little Miss Gwen (17 months) is getting obsessed with the ritual of hand-washing. A pump of soap on each palm, then rubbing of hands together, followed by lots of splashing and rinsing... she almost always asks for "more" soap.
So this activity can't be more perfect for her at this stage! She gets to wash, wash, wash to her heart's delight!
Duplo Bricks Mud Wash for Toddlers!
You would need the following materials:
- Tub of "mud" and "dirt" (I used cocoa powder mixed with a little bit of water)
- A couple of plastic toys (Duplo lego bricks are perfect, easy to wash off before little bits of grime stuck everywhere)
- Tub of bubbly water (I added a few squirts of baby body soap to water, followed by a few drops of blue colouring)
- Tools for pouring and scooping of water
It's best to play your regular clean-up song in the background for this activity, so your little one can associate the activity with tidying up mess and keeping things organised and clean.
I would also recommend this activity to take place in a bath tub or inflated swimming pool pit so all the mess is contained in one place!
Benefits of this Mud Wash Activity
- Varied sensorial experiences (murking about in the "muddy water", dipping hands into soapy water)
- Fine motor practice (object transfer, the action of scrubbing the lego duplo bricks, scooping, pouring)
- Instil a sense of task accomplishment (for cleaning the grime off the lego bricks)
- Early education about hygiene and cleanliness (this is a precursor to teaching your little ones to help you with the dishes in the future!)
- Vocabulary building (especially if you keep a conversation going throughout the activity about the state of the bricks!)
Description Words for Muddy Water Tub
Description Words for Soapy Water Tub
Gwen's Play Experience
I demonstrated tossing the Duplo lego bricks into the mud and dirt, while describing how the bricks became dirty in the process. Then I asked Gwen to choose one of the lego bricks for a soapy wash and I dipped it into the soapy water and described how the dirt got off and how clean it had become.
Then I let free play happen, while staying at the side to supervise. Gwen imitated what I did, but soon became engrossed in trying to mix the contents of both tubs. It must have been very fascinating to see how the colour and texture of the tub contents changed with every scoop.
I recall Gwen used to get quite affected by sticky gooey stuff that gets stuck on her hands but with this activity she could wash those off on her own with the soapy water tub so she kept up with the independent play for quite some time.
Finally, I extended her 15-min play with addition of more colours and my little mixologist really had a great time. The best part was - all the mess was easily washed away in the bathtub and after a quick bath, she knocked out for her afternoon nap!
To follow Gwen's play adventures, check out @miraculove_sg (Instagram) or A Toddler Activity A Day Facebook Group.
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Hi! I am Yunnie. I am the newly minted mama to a little baby girl and a mum friend to everyone on this special (and many times scary) journey of motherhood. Also a graduated bride with a penchant for weddings.