I was looking for toy fish for J’s small world in jelly a while ago and came across reusable ice-cubes. I was intrigued as I’d never heard of them and as it was scorching weather I ordered them thinking they’d be a cleaner, easier ice-play option for baby G. Since they arrived, the weather has been rubbish! You can blame me entirely! However, as I was rummaging through my resource box today (looking for inspiration for a game with G) I saw the ice-cubes and ‘Ice Ice Baby Pirate’ was born. It was so simple to set up and took three minutes (if that) once the cubes were frozen. For a super quick 60 second set-up activity go to the bottom of this post. The bonus with these reusable ice-cubes is they do not make a mess or leave water behind at all! So they can be played with on your carpet indoors!
You will need:
- reusable ice cubes
- a mat
- stacker cups
- a scarf
The idea behind the game is perfect for babies and teething toddlers as there is a peekaboo reveal and the ice is soothing on their gums. G is enjoying the ‘peekaboo’ concept at the moment, so I hid the treasure (ice cubes) under the stacker cups and hid the cups under the scarf. She is also teething so she LOVED chewing on the ice. You can tell by the look on G’s face below, she literally couldn’t wait to get stuck in. She’s getting a big girl now!
It wasn’t long before G managed to pull the scarf off the treasure chests and get to the good stuff!
I loved watching her explore the sensory element to the cubes. She obviously wasn’t expecting them to be so cold and she actually looked shocked! She practised her ability to grip those cubes and passed them from one hand to the other. Another good thing about the cubes is they are small enough for baby to hold and really grasp. It goes without saying that baby and toddler MUST be supervised at all times with these ice cubes but then I wouldn’t leave them alone with any toy to be honest.
A funny thing happened as J kept stealing the cubes! Little menace! He liked the feel of the cold blocks too. He built towers and generally had an explore with them. He then said, ‘look Mummy I’ve made a J for my name.’ It’s back to front but I was SO delighted with him. I’ll refreeze them today and let him play with them too. Just wish I’d bought more!
To change things up for G and model different ways of playing for her, I put the ice cubes in a pot to see what she’d do with them…
… I was not expecting her to swipe them out the way with utter determination and force! Ha! She did this again and attempted to several times after but kept missing! This was a great way to develop G’s hand-eye coordination.
Sixty Second Set-up Idea:
To enjoy the sensory element with these ice cubes and for teething baby/toddler to have a good play whilst soothing their gums, simply freeze the reusable ice cubes and pop them on their high chair tray.