Ocean Life Activities for Babies & Toddlers

8:04 AM

“It is true that we cannot make a genius. We can only give to teach child the chance to fulfill his potential possibilities.”  Maria Montessori

Three years ago I fell in love with Montessori method of pedagogy.  I read extensively on this subject and decided to base my teaching style on the Montessori method.  Two books I utilize daily are Montessori from the Start  by Paula Polk Lillard & Lynn Lillard Jessen and Basic Montessori by David Gettman.  Currently we are focusing on the development of oral language, concentration expansion and sensory play.  

Water Table

Water table is great for quality sensory exploration.  Sensory play is very important because children retain most information when they engage their senses.  Montessori believed that it is important not to add too many items because toddlers can get overwhelmed with too many items and they quickly lose interest and their concentration.  I added rocks and shells that we collected during our beach vacation to the water table.  Kole really enjoyed examining the texture of the shells and rocks, and seeing the cause and effect when rocks were dropped down.  

Felt Board/Flannel Board

Materials Needed:

Felt Board/ Flannel Board ( I added felt material to our easel with Velcro)
Sharp Scissors
Glue Gun
Permanent Markers
Googly Eyes

Felt board play and storytelling has many benefits in teaching babies and toddlers.  Felt board storytelling helps with teaching visual literacy, especially to children that have speech delays.  Both Cici and Kole enjoyed our felt stories and they keep on coming back to play with our ocean wildlife.  To make the felt pieces, I used felt purchased at our local art supply store and I drew ocean wildlife.  Googly eyes were attached to felt with a glue gun and details were added with a permanent marker.  

Object Basket

Object baskets are great for language development.  Materials needed are a basket and model version of ocean wildlife.  Best toys for this activity are ones that look very realistic.  This activity is very simple, yet it does wonders for language development.  When Kole picked up a toy animal, I mentioned the name of the animal and let him examine the model.  Babies and toddlers need lots of repetition; therefore, we will keep this basket on our shelves until Kole loses interest in them. 

Sand Transfer

Materials Needed:

Scoop-shaped spoon
Glass Bottle

This activity required Kole to scoop sand and drop it down the funnel and into the glass bottle.  Not an easy task for a 14 month old toddler; however, he enjoyed every minute of it.  It took great concentration to scoop sand and transfer it to the funnel.  


Kole loves magnets!  These is something so intriguing about them and he can stay busy with them for a long time.  We gathered our collection of sea creatures and Kole arranged them on the board.  While he played, I introduced the name of each animal.  This activity is great because it builds fine motor skills.  However, it is crucial never to leave a toddler unattended while they play with magnets since magnets are very dangerous if ingested.    

Have a great weekend!

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