How do I Make Bathtime a Learning Opportunity?
Bathtime is an opportunity for your baby to learn more about the world around them. Read how to make every bathtime a learning opportunity.
How to make the most of bathtime with your child
We’re huge advocates of making the most of bathtime and grabbing every opportunity to learn with both hands. Being in the water in itself is a whole sensory experience, and adding in one or two games can really enhance that experience for your baby.
We’ve teamed up with Babbu again to bring you some great tips for turning bath time into a wonderful opportunity for your baby to learn more about themselves and the world around them. Babbu are the UK’s first online nursery, designed to support, reassure and empower parents and their children in the first critical few years. Here are their top tips for making the most of bathtime with your child.
Babbu told us that many parents are held back from really enjoying bathtime with their toddler thanks to a previous bad experience in the tub. Sound familiar?
“Yes, your little one might have had one of these in the past and now is not very keen on hopping into the bath now. This could be down to a few reasons, such as the loud sound of the water, it might have been too cold or too hot, having a fear of going down the drain with the water, or that they once got bubbles in their eyes. To encourage your little one to step back in, keep it short and sweet, and allow them to choose what to play with and for how long. Encourage pretend play and switch up the person who does the bath if you can!
When your little one feels a bit more confident to take a bath, here are a few ideas as to how bathtime and washing can support their key areas of development:
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
As your little one begins to learn how to clean themselves, this can provide them with a positive sense of self and encourages a ‘can do attitude’. This greatly supports the development of their independence, as they begin to understand that they can achieve things by themselves with an adult to do things for them.
If your little one enjoys you washing them, you could always give them a toy doll or animal in the bath, and encourage them to clean their toy instead. Learning to look after other objects can support their personal, social and emotional development!
Count your little one’s fingers, toes, arms and legs together! This will support their mathematical knowledge of numbers, counting in sequences and recognising fixed quantities, meaning that they will soon begin to associate the number name with the number of fixed objects e.g. their toes!
Your little one may begin to be reacting to the sensation of bubbles and the water on their skin. Try to use descriptive words during bathtime play, such as “Can you feel the soft bubbles, pop, pop, popping on your skin?”, or ‘“Is the water warm, or cold?”
Talk to your little one about hygiene and the importance of keeping clean. For example, you could say that if we don’t wash, we might get ill and then we will have to stay at home and not go and see our friends. Let them know that they can keep themselves clean throughout the day.
Communication and Language
Reading stories to your little one is a great way to extend their vocabulary, practice their listening and attention skills, and spend
some quality time together! When your little one hears you reading a story or just sharing general chit-chat, they will be learning new words and hearing the different tones in your voice. Not only this but talking about how they can use their body to make things happen, like popping bath bubbles on top of the water or using their hands to make a big splash!
Our activities respect children’s individuality allowing them to be true to themselves, help develop their respect for others, the community and the environment. We provide tailored educational activities and content to support parents, at home – our aim is to make Early Years Education easy, accessible and fun.”