One thing I noticed in our house: it’s very hard to get our girls to clean up things after playtime is over. If putting away toys is presented as a chore and a must, they are more likely to protest and usually, this ends with dramatic tears. So, I try to present chores as something fun to do! And in today’s activity, we also used CDs for a bit of fine motor practice!
This image looks familiar?
Every time they want a different cartoon, they simply take out the previous one and pile one on top of another until they start to slide of the DVD player! We tried the trick with: “You can’t watch another cartoon until you don’t put away the one you took out!” but it didn’t work. So, I decided to use this as an opportunity for a playful learning moment.
Invitation to play – set up
I have laid down all CDs and DVDs on the table and placed empty CD spindles beside them. CD spindles usually come with empty CDs or DVDs (like these). And let them be. It took a few hours before my toddler noticed something was on the table, and it’s possible to play with it.
She played (and worked on her fine motor skills!) sliding CDs and DVDs through the holes and placing them on the spindle. She filled higher spindle (holds up to 50 CDs) and moved to lower one (can hold up to 20 CDs). When she placed all the CDs on their places, she took them off and got ready to put them all back again. This time, I suggested to place DVDs with pictures on top on a higher spindle and those without pictures on a lower spindle. So, she played while separating DVDs and slid them through the holes on spindles according to the picture on top of DVDs.
All of this took around half an hour of dedicated play and she didn’t even realize she was really putting things away! A chore she would protest against if I asked her “to put away those DVDs where they belong!”.
What unlikely toys your toddlers like to play with?