Updated: Jun 11
As a mum of three, I love a playful invitation that takes minutes to prep and uses random bits from the house. The less effort (and money) I use to entertain them the better!
Even with just the one child, sometimes you just need a playful way to distract them while you actually run a brush through your neglected locks, have a HOT coffee for once or, God forbid, paint your nails 😂
Toddlers are particularly tricky as they have that combination of high energy and short attention span - this is where something playful but simple comes into its own!
This animal tape game will give you a smug little feeling when it takes almost ZERO time to prep but your little one gets all kinds of fabulous learning and play from it.
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I love this activity as it literally took me 3 minutes to grab a tray and tear up some tape. It was really easy to set up and it gave Mr 21m something fun to do before his lunch.
He is so into playing with animals at the moment. I have a tiny box of them we take out and about just in case he needs entertaining. His favourite thing is to make them eat and sleep and he does super little sound effects with it!
He couldn't wait to get stuck in and carefully took of the animals one by one, pulling of their tape and passing it to me.
Often with a setup like this, it naturally extends into a really fun learning experience. I knew that it would help with fine motor skills (using his tiny finger muscles), but something I didn't plan for is that we would start making animal noises for each animal Mr 21m 'rescued'. I have to admit there were some questionable noises for goat, lizard and giraffe from mummy, but it was great for communication as we made the noises together. He is behind on his speech, so anything we can do to help this is a winner in my books.
To make this super easy activity you will need:
- Large tray or baking sheet
- Mini toy animals
Place a selection of animals on your tray, take some tape and stick each animal on.
We have a nice big tray in the kitchen I turned upside-down, but I have seen this done with baking sheets as well as they are nice and flat.
I used electrical tape as it stretches over the animals nicely, plus you can re-use it once bubba pulls the animals off, but masking tape would work just as well. Any tape you can get your hands on really!
You need just enough to cover the animals and stick each side - I used about 2 inches per animal as they are the mini kind you get in Safari Wild Toobs.
Mr 21m got stuck right in, using his little thumb and forefinger (pincer grip) to free the animals.
Mr 21m was a little put off by tape getting stuck to his fingers (he has some sensory issues), so I was on hand to take them from him. But he really enjoyed rescuing the animals, and we got lots of 'oos' and 'wows' - he doesn't really talk yet so this is some amazing vocalisation from my little man!
He enjoyed it so much that I used the saved tape to stick the animals down all over again.
Have you tried the animal tape rescue? Comment below!