Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Baster Water Work

I recently purchased these basters on a trip to Lakeshore for under $3 for a set of 3. They are smaller than regular kitchen-sized basters. I've also seen the small ones at kitchen stores such as Sur La Table for around $2 each. The smaller ones are easier for toddler/preschool fingers to squeeze than the bigger ones....

To begin with, I got out two bowls. Filled the first one (on the left) with water and asked Q to transfer the water (using the baster) to the bowl on the right. It takes a little while for children to get the hang of using a baster--the process must be practiced--squeeze, submerge, release, hold over other bowl, and squeeze. She doesn't yet have the hang of it, but we'll keep practicing.

Other extensions:
Vary the temperature of the water provided--warm, cold, etc.
Put a few drops of essential oil (peppermint, almond oil, vanilla, eucalyptus, lavendar, etc.) in the water
Get out an ice cube tray and allow child to fill each compartment
Add a little bit of watercolor to the water to make it colorful

You can also use an eyedropper or medicine dropper if you want even finer motor practice.

Once again this activity works the muscles in the hands, arms and fingers--that team of muscles that is so important for writing later on!

It also encourages following a process, science skills (properties of liquids), and practical life.

For babies, they will enjoy just playing with a baster--exploring it with their mouth. We kept one in the bath for Q as a baby and she enjoyed when Daddy squirted her with it! Made her giggle like crazy!!
Posted by Picasa