May 18, 2010

Treasure tank

Just a quick one today. Nothing too involved ;) We don't have a paddling pool at our place for the kids, so I just let them play with water outside in a couple of storage containers and they seem perfectly happy with that. Today was a nice sunny day, so with five kidletts we filled the biggest storage box with water, added a bit of blue food colouring to make it look more oceanish, and then I gave them a load of random craft leftovers to throw in. We had some craft foam shapes that they could cut up or hole punch bits out of and of course those floated.

I also gave them some sequins and other random bits to chuck in, like some left over foam beads from the Dollar Tree. They added some sand from our sandbox and that made a kind of cool ocean floor. The littlest girls were really in love with the pretty floating flowers, and they managed to find a host of different things to do with this set up, the favourite of which seemed to be a make believe game of collecting sunken treasure on the ocean floor. I gave them some of the seives we have to sift the floating treasure with too, and they figured out that they could "suck" the floating treasure into the bottles we had in the recycling bin too, which was pretty cool.
It wasn't rocket science, but it was enough fun that I thought I'd share it here, because I'm sure people have a lot of random craft bits and pieces knocking around the house, that they just aren't sure what to do with. I'll pour it all through a collinder later and collect all the "treasure" for another go at it again some time.

19 comments:

MaryAnne said...

Fabulous, I especially like the blue food coloring and sand additions. I love this type of free play!

Christianne @ Little Page Turners said...

Love it! She's right - the blue food coloring is a stroke of genius. Going to file this one for summer fun.

Catherine Hansen Peart said...

I love simple playtime like this. Brilliant. So glad you share it!

Crystal @ Semi-Crunchy Mama said...

Love this! Fun, sensory, open-ended...so wonderfully, deceptively simple!

A fun twist is to freeze tinted water and odds & ends in a large container. Once it's frozen solid, dump the ice block into a larger tub. Let the children drip salt water with eyedroppers, or pour it onto the block from small measuring cups, and the ice will melt away, revealing the treasures hidden inside. This takes a bit of time, but it's fun to check back on periodically to see how the melting progresses!

Teacher Tom said...

I especially like the floating flowers too. I want to play with them. I think I have a bunch of those somewhere. I'm doing it for our final week of school . . . I have foam cars too. =)

Kiruthika Curic said...

The ice is a nice idea, but my kids always seem to catch a cold after I let them play in ice. They love it though

Sherry and Donna said...

You're absolutely right it's NOT rocket science, It play based learning at it's very best!! Donna :) :)

Bonnie said...

Small world. I had done the same activity with my 2 yo grandson yesterday, except he added a large digger that scooped up water and beads and dumped them into a container. Boys will be boys! LOVE your blog!

Eva said...

looks like so much fun!

Scott said...

Throwing in random leftovers and letting the kids experiment - genius! I'm imagining all kinds of fun treasures to drop in the water. (And I really liked coloring the water.)

Elle Sees said...

Is it wrong that I want to play with this myself?

Amy said...

Love it. We've done the ice thing but never this big of a tub. We'll be adding one to the back porch shortly!

Whimsical Creations said...

What a cute idea.

Megan (tandem teaching) said...

Woah - this is great. They must have felt like mermaids. Love this.

Lena said...

So simple and effective. I have three girls who are going to love this. Unfortunately we have to wait a few months as we are nearly in winter. What a wonderful idea.

amy said...

we just did this yesterday! so much fun! my son was making lego submarines and the other kids were playing with the sequins and glitter and tube and tubs. living in fl where it is so hot, we do the ice thing alot too. thanks!

Crystal said...

This is LOVELY and I think it's the simple ideas like this that are rocket science, because they're easy and cheap for Mom!

MustangShelby said...

So fun! They learn a lot from that kind of play, they can enjoy it for hours, and it's simple for mom to set up and clean up. I likey.

Nadene said...

I love your unique, creative inspiration in your free games. Your children are so blessed. You facilitate such an adventurous life!