Little Miss G loves a good treasure basket/box/bag and it is always a sure way to keep her engaged and entertained for a few days of intermittent play. Treasure baskets are a fantastic way for young children to explore and discover using their senses. The way the children play with them is completely open-ended and can be interpreted however the child so wishes. The beauty is that each time a child plays with the same box, they will play in a different way. View other Treasure baskets suitable from birth to school age we have made here.
For this ‘Recycled Treasure Box,’ I used six yoghurt pots, a shoe box and some of G’s and J’s colourful toys.
To give the box some more interest and ways of playing, I cut holes out of the box lid and slotted the yoghurt pots into the hole. I made them big enough for G to be able to pull them out if she wanted but not so big that they fell out.
I wanted G to experience and discover colour through play and by saying the names of the colour as she plays, eventually she will pick them up without it being a chore.
Inside the box included: (you can easily adapt the objects in your box to suit age and your child and whatever theme you choose)
- two rainbow scarves
- two large pompoms (obviously adult supervision required here!)
- two plastic stars from her birthday balloon
- four small, plastic balls
- some Megablocks
- some Clementoni blocks
I left the box with all of it’s pieces in for G. During the first play, I put the box on the footstool so that G had to play standing up. Positioning toys at different heights means that baby/toddler plays differently and gets a full gross motor workout at the same time, developing their muscles and control from head to toe!
Giving G a variety of objects with different colours is the beginning of her colour learning adventure but I also put in objects with different textures. The pompoms are soft and fluffy, the Megablocks are hard and smooth and the Clemontoni blocks are squidgy and rubbery.
During her first play session, G loved emptying the items from the box and exploring them one at a time; finally flinging them across the floor. She also discovered that the yoghurt pots came out…
Once she had made this discovery, she sat down for a closer inspection! She pulled and pushed the pots out and also squished them; enjoying the sound they made as she did so.
For G’s second play session, I put some of the items inside the yoghurt pots. She enjoyed pulling them out; especially the rainbow scarves.
Other babies may also figure out that you can also put things in to the pots. G hasn’t done this yet but I’m sure with a few more plays this week, she will discover that too!
Not only does this treasure basket allow for discovery and play with the lid, also the other part of the box forms a more traditional treasure basket. Not only this but it means you can store the items away when not being played with.
G’s favourite part of this ‘Recycled Treasure box’ today has definitely been the pulling the pots out of their holes. Again, older babies/toddlers, would also be able to put the yoghurt pots back in but G doesn’t quite have the control and coordination for this just yet.
Another thing older babies/toddlers may do with this is match the coloured yoghurt pots with the objects. G is holding the yellow star below and reaching for the yellow pot but I know that this was certainly a BIG fluke!!
G finished off her play session again by squeezing and squishing the yoghurt pots; she’s such a noisy madam!! What you can’t hear from the photo below is the constant babbling she was coming out with! Bless her… she was very excited! I’d love to see how your little ones enjoy this recycled treasure basket and what you decide the theme and objects should be to go inside. Happy Discovery Babies!