Child’s Sensory Board
Toys or objects that provide many opportunities for sensory experimentation and observation stimulate a baby and young child to learn while having fun. You can make a sensory board for your own child using household items and that have a variety of textures, sizes, shapes, and movement. When you create your own sensory board, you can personalize it for your child by adding their name, pictures of family members, and other special items. While you play with your child, take time to talk about all of the objects on the board, what they do, and how they work. Count the objects. If you include words or your child’s name, spell them outloud and say them. There are so many ways to use a sensory board. Even if children can’t yet talk, they are listening and soaking in the rich language learning you are providing!
**When making your board always ensure that you use items that are not a choking hazard or can catch tiny fingers. Make sure that items are firmly attached to the board. Never leave a baby unattended while playing.**
- A board large enough to hold the items you want to attach. Boards that can be used include: those found at hardware stores or craft stores; large cutting boards; shelves; old table tops; etc.
Sample items for your sensory board can be age appropriate and include:
- Large swatches of various textured material. (I used fur, a scrubbing sheet, and a piece of carpeting)
- Wooden or thick cardboard letters and numbers, painted in a variety of colors. Letters can be used to add a child’s name to the board.
- Figures cut from sheets of foam or wooden figures found at craft stores in a variety of numbers that you can count with your child (I used sets of 1, 2, and 3 fish cut from foam to go along with the numbers 1, 2, and 3)
- Push button light
- Chalk board to write on
- Castor or other wheel
- Door latches
- Door knockers
- Mop heads
- Paint rollers
- Drawer handles
- Hinges (I attached a tennis ball to a hinge that children can push back and forth)
- Paint in various bright colors
- Paint brushes
- Nuts and bolts
- Super glue
- Assemble your items
- Paint wooden or cardboard items
- Arrange item on the board so that your baby or child can easily reach or manipulate each one
- Attach items with screws, nuts and bolts, or super glue
- Push button lights or other objects that take batteries can be attached with strong Velcro. Ensure items attached with Velcro are large and not a choking hazard.
- Set up board where you and your baby or child can enjoy playing with it together
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