Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Learning Along The Way With Fun Water Play

     I've said it before, and I'll say it again (just in case you missed it the first few times). Playtime IS learning time! Late last night I came across a wonderful play time challenge, 30 DAYS TO HANDS ON PLAY hosted by Hands On: As We Grow and The Imagination Tree. The idea is to spend at least 15 minutes of uninterrupted playtime with your child each day. The fabulous ladies behind this challenge issue a daily play idea but you are encouraged to add your own touches to really make it yours. 
     I made it to the play party a bit late, but better late than never, right? The day 8 challenge is "Water Play."  Oh how little drenched B loves his mommy tonight! We took today's challenge out on the deck and experimented with colored water. 
      We filled three clear containers with red, blue and yellow water. Then I gave B plastic bottles, funnels and scoopers and told him to "Have Fun!"  He looked at me a bit skeptically at first (note to self: remember to ease up on the directed play) but then he dove right in. After he apologized for the first big spill and I said "that's okay, that's why we are doing this outside," he was all smiles and bigger spills!
     I initially just sat there next to him and talked to him while he splashed, scooped and transferred the colorful water. To my surprise he started talking about how mixing two colors made a new color. He discovered this fact quite awhile ago, but he always seems excited to experiment with color himself. After a few minutes I asked if I could play too and he eagerly handed me a scooper and told me which container to use.
     For the next 20+ minutes we splashed and talked together happily. Although the challenge is meant to  encourage a relaxed and uninterrupted, engaged play session, I was happily surprised when B brought up the idea of colors and asked "why?" nearly a hundred times. Today my little guy made playtime learning time all by himself! 

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