Thursday, August 9, 2012

Discovery Basket - Cups & Spoons

I saw a similar idea on Pinterest the other day and thought that Z-Rex would really enjoy it.  With the extreme summer heat we have been spending much of our days inside. This was just the thing for an afternoon of quiet, in depth exploration.  

The set up:

 I used a large plastic bowl to present Z-Rex with an assortment of cups and spoons. A wide mouth plastic bottle, paper cup, solo cup, and a metal cup. 
I also included a plastic spoon and a metal spoon for him to bang on the cups.


Baby Rex took his time taking out one item at a time and investigating each one in turn. 
He squeezed, smacked, and shook everything.


I think his favorite was the metal cup. He really liked the sound it made when he banged on it with his hand. Rex LOVES things with handles that he can hang onto and shake!                      

Baby Rex also thoroughly enjoyed the paper cup, it was easy to squeeze and crush. I said squeeeeeeeze every time he did, and this was extremely funny to him! As you can see he also needed to used his head for additional leverage.   



When Z-Rex seemed to be loosing interest in the activity, I showed him another way to use the materials. He picked up very quickly how to use the spoons as a drum stick to bang on things. I loved watching his expression as we experimented with different spoons and different cups. Again his favorite was the metal cup & spoon combo that made the most interesting "ting-ting" like a bell! 

Fine Motor Skills!

Check out that concentration! Z-Rex was so PROUD when he got the spoon out of the bottle :)

Moments like these are PRICELESS! 
I am so thankful I was 
able to capture it.

Baby Rex really has the hang of  it now. He spent several minutes putting in and taking out the spoon.

Another great way to explore with these 
materials is as nesting or building blocks. 
Rex loved knocking over a tower of cups!  

Z-Rex really enjoyed playing with his cups and spoons. 

This is such an easy and great way to promote 
in depth exploration of common items or toys. 

I already have a few more ideas for our next discovery basket! 

Tips & Tricks:
  • Create a space with few distractions. We cleaned up all our other toys, then sat in the middle of the play carpet.
  • Limit the number of objects, too many will be overwhelming. 
  • Offer a variety of objects. Each of our cups/spoons were made of different materials. Each felt and sounded different.
  • Verbally illustrate what your child is doing, feeling, hearing, or seeing. ("Do your feel how cool and smooth the metal cup is?")
  • Allow you child to explore at their own pace in their own way.
  • Show different ways to use the items.
  • Have fun!

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  1. This looks awesome! He looks like he's in hog heaven! We need a mini band bc Olivia has a baby drum, finger cymbals, a tambourine and loves to play them! I can't wait to try this with Osie! Thanks for posting so we can pillage your research!

  2. Happy to share & hopefully inspire :)