Sunday, August 1, 2010

Bath Time Is Learning Time

Making bath time fun? Not an easy task? Does every task associated with bathing and hair washing seem truly torture for your kids; getting their hair wet, getting water or soap in their eyes, refusing to hold washcloths over their face when you're trying to rinse... Bath time can be fun or it can be a real hassle if your child does not like it. So, we as mums, try to make it a fun time for our little ones! Then the problem will be getting them out!!! Admittedly I struggle with all of the above night in and night out with both my boys, and am the first to give a"silent yippee" in the air when their dad makes it home to do bath time(which is not too often!) Bathing one is fine, as I'm sure you agree, bathing two or more can end up feeling like an octopus wrestling Siberian tigers!!

So to overcome this battle, bath time in our house has predominately become learning time.... all of which is fun and interactive and involves all the tedious tasks that need to be done. We even manage to cut our nails in the bath as we are tigers getting ready to go hunting!! Below I have put together some ideas that I use with the boys when it is bath time. I have found it a wonderful opportunity to teach colours, numbers, shapes, science concepts (floating & sinking - not the kids!!), maths concepts (full and empty) etc


  • Sing Songs Together
    Kids love to sing and to be sung to. Bath time songs like "Rubber Ducky" and "Splish Splash I Was Taking A Bath" are great bath time songs. When my children were very young we played "This Little Piggy" as I washed each toe.


  • Measure It
    Measuring cups are fun for pouring and filling in the tub and if you have an old set they are a great free fun set of toys for the tub. They can stack and pour to their hearts content and maybe even learn to wet their hair for washing. Control gives many children the power to overcome fears such as getting their hair wet for washing.
    Learning time can be created through the use of measures. Take the one cup measuring cup and ask the child how many of each cup it will take to fill your big cup.


  • Color It
    Bubble bath can be irritating to little ones causing urinary tract infections, yeast infections, as well as skin irritation. A few drops of food coloring is a wonderful solution adding interest and fun to your child’s bath. You can also turn each bath into a learning experience; drop one color in, such as red, then ask your child what they think will happen if you add a drop of yellow.


  • Counting down from 10 or 20 during rinsing


  • Soap bubbles - mix liquid soap, food coloring, and soap flakes together in a bowl. Let the children paint with the soap bubbles on the tiles around the tub or on the insides of the tub. This mixture can be used like finger paint and will wash off easily.

  • Food coloring in the water - two or three drops will turn the water different colors and will not harm the children. Mix colors together to make new colors.

  • Pails and paintbrushes - "paint" the tub, tiled walls, faucets, and tub toys with water.

  • Floating and sinking - gather items of different sizes and weights and place them in the tub one at a time while playing the game "Sink?" or "Float?"


  • Fishing pole - make out of paper towel cardboard or other safe material, and "go fishing" in the tub for toys.

  • Ice cubes - put one or two in the tub to play with and to watch as they melt. Talk about water and how it can be frozen to make ice and how ice can be melted to make water.

  • Boats - make out of empty milk cartons or plastic bottles.


  • Buy some bath time letters A-Z and numbers 1-10 that are scrambled around all sides of the bath. After asking about Master 4's day and what he did, we move onto a little bit of revision I guess you could say. But simple things, simple words, like cat, dog, etc that he can use the letters to make the word.


  • Alternate bath toys as much as possible so that the kids always find something which is fun to play with.


  • Sculpture from shaving foam is also bath time fun activity and you can squeeze some large splotches of shaving foam on the hand of the child or the bath and let the child imagine after that.


  • You can take the opportunity at the bath time for kids to introduce them to different types of music as well as to story on CD’s or tapes.


  • Read bath books to your child - great for when your little one is very tired and may not stay awake for a story that night.


  • You can give the kids a special treat at the bath time for kids, by having bubble blowing mixture in the bathroom, but be careful that it does not get into the eyes of the child or anyone else.


  • Buy bath crayons to draw with, learn to write your name.


Remember that not too soon your child's bath time will not be there as your kids will grow up and will take their own shower and will not like your interference. The things you do to add magic and fun to the kids bath time during these times will be repaid many times over in making fun memories for your kid and you for the future.

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