Toddler School

Sensory Play & Gross Motor Fun {Texture Walk}

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Boy did we get some serious ‘traction’ out of this
lesson! 

We started building our walk {or crawl} right after Christmas when I needed something to entertain the boys while cleaning up, un-decorating and deciding where to get next with Toddler School. If you’re looking for a fantastic Transition Lesson for between your Toddler School Units, THIS is it!

I began with only the Dollar Tree door mat and bubble wrap. Both I already had. The door mat I picked up earlier to use as a felt back drop and the bubble wrap I had laying around after Christmas {upcycle bonus!} I used my trusting masking tape to secure them down to the floor.



 The boys were fascinated for hours, upon hours. Cash eventually brought his new dinosaurs out for a stomp contest on the bubble wrap. He wants to determine which dinosaur could pop the most with their feet. The T-rex won… he had the biggest feet!


Days of entertainment passed and eventually the bubble wrap depleted.
I eventually added in tin foil for the slippery, reflection surface. Wyatt
really likes mirrors and I thought this would be a fun addition. He did like
pressing it into the hardwood floor which produced an unexpected bonus texture
of the wood grain!
Next {to replace the bubble wrap for awhile} I added in two
pieces of scrapbooking paper I had in my inventory. One is a page of glitter
clouds where the glitter is raised off the page for a fun scratchy feel. The
other is a piece of burlap paper… because I don’t know anyone these days
{especially my wedding planning friends} who doesn’t have a piece of teal
burlap just lying around!

We spend a few fun days with this runway to the window. Cash
and I began playing hopscotch on it and working on our gross motor balancing
skills including a one-legged hop, in and out jumping from square to square,
like a jumping jack, and just two foot jumping.
We have enjoyed lots of stomping, crawling, running and
entertainment for a week straight. We are now 20 days in to our Texture Walk
and the boys are still really into it!




My next step was to turn the corner and expand. I really liked where Cash was going with the gross motor play and I saw an opportunity to give him more exercise indoors during these cold winter days.
Every athlete mom I know who played a gym sport at any time
in her life is familiar with LADDER conditioning. Right? So I built one. I use
it too, right along with Cash before bedtime and it wares us both out. I needed
another Mommy Muscles opportunity too! I show him how to do fast feet, hop on one leg and active plank exercises.

Download your FREE Mommy Muscle Ladder & Plank Workout HERE

Wyatt is also very interested in how things feel on his face…. and of course he needs to try things in his mouth to get the full affect of the situation…good luck buddy! Momma taped it down! 

 

We took a right angle at the tin foil, which gave us a great
turn to make in our ladder workout. I readjusted in some places by reducing the
bubble wrap {but also bringing it back for fun!} and adding in a piece of felt
{Dollar Tree pack} a piece of foam paper {Dollar Tree pack} and a square of
that no slip grip mat you put down in your cupboards {also Dollar Tree!}
We now had 8 textures {for LESS than $3 total} to jump,
play, poke, scratch and crawl over. Wyatt was even more motivated to learn
walking skills as he watched Cash and I jump around all morning. Cash likes to
run across the bubble wrap still and count how many pops he hears as he runs.
The benefits of this fun and easy Texture walk are endless.
What I thought was going to be just a simple Sensory {keep them busy} activity
turned into our own little workout station. I was able to assess where the boys
are physically. Cash has seriously increased his vertical jump by a whole inch
in just 20 days! 
Watch Cash’s jump video on Instagram HERE
His balance and overall physical skill for movement has
improved. Before, he was not coordinated enough to do a jumping jack, now they’re
effortless. Wyatt can also not only walk with more balance, but he can stand up
in the middle of the floor on his own and stomp on bubble wrap without falling.
This activity will likely exist in our home for a long time!
I highly recommend building your own! It goes far beyond
sensory play! 

Share the Sweetness
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