In many places around the world, kids and grownups wait all year for great summer weather, and the opportunity to have fun outside. For an outside play-of-the-day, how about a toy wash?
The magic ingredients are soapy water in a big bowl or container and lots of little things to wash. Plastic cars, dolls, blocks, figurines, and other toys could maybe all do with a wash, especially if the weather is warm enough for a quick dry. If there are some big towels in the rag bag, spread them out on a flat surface close to the washing area. Gather ups some toys that can be safely immersed and supply kids with some cloths, scrub brushes, or sponges.
Oh, and maybe bring the cat into the house. Cats do not appreciate having a turn with soapy water and a sponge.
Much of children’s play is based on what they see others around them already doing. Kids do not make the distinction that adults do between play and work. What we call work may be play for them and it is part of fun, learning, kindergarten readiness, and life skills. Sometimes, kids even see these activities as so important that they insist that they get a turn too.
Not only are even quite young children capable of helping, it is important that they do. Kids need to learn that caring for toys is part of playing with them. Giving children some chores to do helps them learn to be responsible. Being responsible doesn’t come automatically with birthdays, it’s a skill that develops from practicing. Children also feel like they are part of the group when we give then jobs to do and completing something gives them a sense of accomplishment. Part of ownership, is taking care of things. To kids, taking care of their toys by washing them is another way to play with them.
What needs some washing at your house?
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