How Sensory Play Can Stimulate Your Little One’s Senses
From a very young age, babies will use all five senses; touch, sight, hearing, smell and taste to start exploring the world. Simply put, these senses send information to the brain to help your little one understand more about themselves and the things around them. Commonly, parents and caregivers will use sensory play to stimulate babies' senses, and sensory toys and props can help with brain development.
There are so many different sensory toys on the market and there are numerous sensory experiences you can create for your little one, all of which will be incredibly beneficial and help them to reach their early developmental milestones. If you’ve never tried sensory play before, below we have explored how sensory toys, props and activities can stimulate and enhance some of your little one’s senses in the first few years of life.
Sense of touch
The sense of touch is the sense that is most commonly associated with sensory play. Lots of baby sensory toys are specifically designed to be intriguing shapes and feature various textures, encouraging little ones to play with them. Simply exploring sensory toys with their hands can help babies develop their sense of touch, which will go on to affect their overall development in a number of important ways.
Commonly, sensory toys for babies are ideal for improving both fine motor skills and gross motor skills. By holding, squeezing, throwing, pushing and pulling different toys whilst they’re playing, your little one will be strengthening the muscles in their body. Not to mention, sensory play is great for tactile stimulation too and using props like ribbon rings to tickle different body parts can help build self-awareness.
Sense of sight
Sensory play is about so much more than just the sense of touch. Even though babies can only see black, white and grey shades for the first few months of their lives, there are a number of sensory toys that feature high contrast black and white patterns that can be incredibly beneficial to play with. Sight is one of the least developed senses when a baby is born and it is important that you’re stimulating this sense through play.
When you use high contrast baby sensory toys with your little one, you can support their early visual development. These toys will encourage things such as visual scanning and tracking, strengthening your baby’s eyesight and also improving their attention span. Sensory play is often used to help with hand-eye coordination too and developing both the sense of touch and sight can be really advantageous in this regard.
Sense of hearing
Unlike the sense of sight, a baby’s sense of hearing is actually quite developed when they’re born, however, you should still continue to stimulate it through sensory play. There are lots of different musical instruments for babies that can be used to develop their sense of hearing, but a simple egg shaker rattle or even just a crinkly foil blanket will allow them to experiment with and explore different sounds.
It isn’t uncommon for sensory play to be used to teach the basics of cause and effect, and playing with something like a rattle will help your little one understand that actions have responses. This is really beneficial for developing their early communication, cognition and problem-solving skills. Of course, noisy baby sensory toys are engaging and create curiosity too, helping to develop your little one’s attention span.
Purchasing baby sensory toys
There is no denying that sensory play is a brilliant way to stimulate all of your little one’s senses and if you’re keen to support their development, playing with baby sensory toys is definitely something you should be doing. If you’re searching for somewhere to purchase sensory toys for babies, take a look at the My Little Goody Box online store today.
We supply a brilliant range of sensory toys and props, all of which can be used in a number of different ways to help your baby reach their next milestones. All of the products on our website have been handpicked based on things we have or would have used with our own children and we are passionate about providing a vast range of baby sensory toys to parents and caregivers. If you’re really interested in making the most of sensory play, why not purchase one of our baby sensory boxes, these come with useful play guides full of sensory activities to try.