Most children love the water and bath time is one of their favorite times; it can also be a great time for learning and fun! Put on some children's music and make it a party!
Bathtub fun allows children to experience full body play. Water can be refreshing and stimulating, buoyant and resistant. Measuring and pouring are early times of mathematical discovery, so assign a set of measuring cups to the bathroom. Use your beach toys, floating foam letters/puzzles/blocks, plastic animals for additional fun.
Soap foam and soap crayons are a great way of using bath time to promote fine motor skills and provide tactile stimulation. Children can also work on balance and gross motor skills. With very close supervision, I let children stand on a bath mat in the tub before the water is drawn and color on the bathtub walls with shaving cream, soap foam, or soap crayons. Standing and reaching up is a good activity to develop “core control”—trunk strength that gives our bodies stability for other activities. When the play is done, bath time starts and all the mess goes down the drain.
Bath time is a great one-on-one time with an adult. Social interaction, singing, imaginative play and relationship building can occur. Language skills develop. Young children can learn the names of body parts. A song that I created is set to the tune of, “Skip to My Lou”. I sing, “Nose, nose, where is your nose? Nose, nose, where is your nose? Nose, nose where is your nose? Where is _________’s nose?” Then, “Nose, nose, here is your nose….. Here is _________’s nose!”
Bath time is part of a great bedtime routine (see our article, “Beat the Bedtime Battles”) It is one of the ways to let children (and parents!) unwind before heading to bed.
Children need to be bathed. Don’t make it a chore, make it a delight!
Blog Administrator: Trisha Roberts
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