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Sponge Water Transfer

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This simple toddler water play activity is such an easy to set up activity idea.

Strengthen those fine motor skills with this super simple sponge water transfer play activity. With every squeeze of the sponge, your toddler will be building up vital small muscle groups in their fingers and hands that will assist with so many life tasks.

Sponge Water Transfer

Sponge Water Transfer

Fine motor skills are vital for tasks such as fastening buttons, using scissors, handwriting, and tying shoes.

Many of our kiddies are entering formal school without the basic fine motor strength to use tools such as crayons and scissors.

Developing these skills is so easy to work into everyday play to prepare your toddler for school and furthermore!

Today we had a blast doing just that with three basic household items.

Sponge Water Transfer

What you need for a sponge water transfer activity:

Like all water play activities, you can either prepare for a mess to prevent a bigger one before playing or mentally prepare for the clean-up afterward.

Spills are going to happen here.

While each spill is likely to be an accident, they are all part of learning and a stepping stone to mastering the skill and coordination that is involved in not making spills.

We celebrate spills as a sign that our brains are growing with the new information that they give us and proof that we are trying.

That being said, we have a tray set up under our bowls to catch these little hiccups to save the water and keep our play space safe.

The same can be said for the waterproof play mat that lines the floor under our play table.

Waterproof mattress protectors are another useful alternative that you may already have in the linen cupboard too!

We use a household sponge for this activity. If you are short of sponges, a face washer is a great alternative.

Sponge Water Transfer

How to set up your sponge water transfer activity:

Setting up this fine motor water play activity is a breeze.

Place the bowls onto the tray.

Pour the water into one of the bowls, leaving the second empty. Then your activity is all ready for play!

Before playing, you can introduce your toddler to the sponge and ask them some questions about what it is.

What do they think it does?

Have they seen one being used before?

What do they think we are going to use for today?

They draw their attention to its sensory attributes.

Is it hard or soft, smooth or rough, warm or cold?

These questions are designed to further deepen their understanding of what they already know and then spark their curiosity to build more knowledge.

How you roll with getting started can go a couple of ways.

You could demonstrate placing the sponge into the water until it absorbs its fill of water before lifting it out. Hold the sponge over the empty bowl before squeezing the water from the sponge into the bowl.

Repeat until the first bowl is empty and then start the process again going back.

Alternatively, you could leave the activity open-ended and see where your child’s natural curiosity takes them.

My Mr 3 loved this seemingly simple activity so much that we spent the better part of the afternoon going back and forth, squeezing, and pouring the spilled water from the tray back into the bowl.

Sponge Water Transfer

His favourite part of the entire activity was using the sponge to mop up spills and squeeze the water back into the bowl.

A practical life skill learned through play, transferrable to every day!

Our sponge water transfer activity is a perfect example of simple play often being the most engaging and meaningful play.

Whether you set this up outside on a warm day or add it to bath time play, it’s easy, skills totally transferable to real life and kids love it!

Sponge Water Transfer

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About the Author

Dani is a busy stay-at-home Mum of 3 and an early childhood teacher in training who is passionate about play-based learning throughout early childhood. For educational play ideas that you can do at home and parenting tips visit Play Inspired Mum Check her out on Instagram  andFacebook