I sometimes forget that the best games for a toddler might involve the simplest things. This game, which I’ve pulled out twice in the past week, is a huge hit and easy for us moms and dads to set up.
Save your next paper towel tube roll and tape it to a door or cabinet. Present your little one with a bag full of large pom poms and let them go to town!
Travis started out dropping the pom poms down the chute, as I expected, and that was fun in and of itself. But his two favorite variations on the game were trying to fill the tube from the bottom up:
And, stuffing multiple pom poms down the tube at once, while crying out, “So many!” We’d squish them and then see how long it took for the clogged pompoms to get squeezed all the way down the tube so we could start pulling them from the bottom.
For slightly more intellectual play, I later presented Travis with mini pom poms in a muffin tin. Much to my surprise, he asked for tongs to move them from cup to cup, but when this became frustrating he had no problem using his fingers or a spoon. He clearly had some imaginative game going in his head, because he told me the pom poms were “still warm” and then “perfect temp” and that we had a to wait a few minutes, so I know he was imitating the way he plays with toy food (and also mimicking the things I say at dinner time, haha).
My favorite moment, though, was when he spied a blue in the green bin – and made sure to place it back with the other blue ones! When we had fun dumping all the pom poms out, (which of course we did multiple times), he would sort them back into the tins by color.
At long last, the concept of sorting!