Pom poms are a fantastic way to develop fine motor skills and dexterity and the perfect addition to any type of sensory play. Sensory play is extremely beneficial for children. Simple activities like this have been shown to build nerve connections in the brain that assist children completing more complex tasks in the future. Your little one will love the eye-opening experience of an ice cube and the surprising texture of a pom pom.
- A tray or baking pan
- Pom poms (you can reuse the same pom poms after freezing, too!)
- Ice mold
- Fill the ice mold with pom poms.
- Add water and freeze overnight.
- Place the baking pan or tray on the floor and add the frozen pom poms.
- Set your child a few inches from the pan to encourage crawling, which will help build strength in their arms and legs.
- As your child reaches the pom poms, let them reach, grab, and play with the frozen pom poms as desired. They’ll be intrigued by the cold and texture and this play enhances hand-eye coordination, improves focus, and builds fine/gross motor strength.
- Point out and describe what they are doing to increase vocabulary. For example, “That is frozen!” “Isn’t that cold?” “The ice is hard.”
- When you’re finished, you can leave the pom poms out to dry and reuse them for another activity.
- Make sure you are present during this activity for younger children: pom poms can be a choking hazard, depending on the size you use.
Skill areas addressed:
- Gross motor skills
- Temperature recognition
- Language skills
- Social skills
Extensions & Adjustments:
- If your child is older, you could add spoons and buckets to create a transferring game.
- Add two pans with different temperatures of water.
Author: Analisa Carrillo