DIY Sensory Play for Baby

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All parents want their baby to explore and experience new sensations, but let’s be honest: babies can act a bit like cats sometimes – you spend large amounts of money on a fancy toy that includes all sorts of bells and whistles only to find your child (or cat) is much more interested in the cardboard box and packaging it arrived in! We have gathered DIY sensory play tools that you can make yourself for very little cost using inexpensive materials that you probably already have in your home, so if baby does get bored you can just recycle the toys you’ve made.

Sensory Bags

We love this activity because everything stays sealed in the bag so there is no mess and no danger of baby swallowing anything.

  • Fill a large, heavy duty, re-sealable bag with hair gel, glitter and small brightly coloured objects such as toys, buttons and foam shapes.
  • Seal the bag and then reinforce the edges of the bag with duct tape to ensure it cannot be opened.
  • Let baby squish and squash to their hearts content.

Sponge Fun

This is a great activity for hot days, your child will get wet so have fluffy towels and a change of clothes on hand for when playtime is over.

  • Cut clean cellulose type sponges into different shapes like hearts, circles and diamonds.
  • Set out a shallow tray of water with the sponges floating in them.
  • Baby will love the feeling of picking up and squeezing the absorbent sponges.
Some tips for sponge fun
  • Use different colours of sponges for added stimuli.
  • Use sponges that do not have a scrubbing surface or remove this material before giving to baby.
  • As always, keep a very close on eye on baby as they play with water and make sure they are supervised at all times.

Painting with Flowers

Exposing your baby to nature from a young age is important and with this activity you can create a beautiful keepsake as well. If you don’t have easy access to flowers we suggest ordering a bouquet from Bloom Magic, let the adults of the house enjoy it for a few days and then turn it into a sensory activity for your wee one. The sensations of paint and petals will be a new one for baby and will also allow them to experiment with pressure and motor skills.

Not all plants are safe for baby so be sure to research non-toxic plants before starting this activity.

  • Look for large leaves and blooms that hold together well.
  • Trim stems to about 2 inches long so baby can easily hold them.
  • Gently coat the petal side of the flower and one side of leaves in kid-safe paint.
  • Allow baby to press the flowers and leaves onto paper to make beautiful prints.

Make Music

Similar to the sensory bags, this activity is completely mess free and sealed up for safety.

  • Collect an assortment of tubes and containers, clean them out well. Pringles cans and yoghurt pots work extremely well for this activity.
  • Fill a clean Pringle’s tubes 1/4 full with rice, replace the lid and seal with duct tape
  • Fill one clean yoghurt pot 1/2 full with dried beans, place an identical yoghurt pot on top of the bean filled one and tape the two together securely with duct tape.
  • Let baby shake, rattle and roll!
Some tips for making music
  • Different sized containers with differs amounts and types of filling will make unique noises.
  • Cover the outside of your container with patterned contact paper or wrap with coloured twine to make them more decorative.

With any DIY toys, be sure to regularly check items for wear and tear and always supervise your baby when they are playing.


Baby’s first steps – with or without shoes?

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Around 1 year, baby starts to take the first steps… An emotional moment for the whole family! But should baby wear shoes straight away? Here are the tips from a specialist.

At birth, baby’s foot is essentially composed of fat and cartilage. It will take 21 years to completely ossify! For now, the foot’s arch is completely masked by a thick fatty cussion which makes the feet appear flat: no panic, it actually is only the case for 10% of children. Continue reading

How do I give medicine to my child?

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How do I get baby to swallow safely with pipettes?

The smaller baby is, the smaller its protection reflex is. Which is why there is a risk of foods and liquids going the wrong way. Instead of heading for the oesophagus, the medicine goes to the bronchial tubes, keeping baby from breathing, which can vasovagal response.

You want to administer drop by drop. Place the baby is semi-seated position, not lying down. Position the pipette against the cheek and not in the back of the throat. The baby often has the reflex of sucking on the pipette and aspirating the product himself/herself. So you have to very gently press on the pump to go with the suction. You can also put the product in a bottle teat and have baby suck the teat.

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Be careful not to get confused with the pipettes. Each medicine has its own dosage, and its own pipette. Even if in both cases, weights are indicated, the ibuprofen pipette must not be used for paracetamol and vice versa, as posologies are different.

Water, bottle, what are they to be administered with?

You can dilute the medicine in a water bottle, but only if you put a tiny bit of liquid: if the child only drinks half the bottle, it won’t have all the product. This preparation should not be made too much in advance as you could lose efficiency in the product. However, it is not recommended to mix the medicine with milk. Some active ingredients (fluor, some antibiotics etc ) would not be absorbed by the body. Be careful not to combine several drugs, as certain interactions could harm the good assimilation of the active ingredients.

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Syrup, sachet, suppository, what galenic form should I choose?

You should choose a galenic form adapted to each age. From 15kg for example, paracetamol will be more adapted as a sachet than a syrup. As for suppositories? They are not   recommended because it it difficult to measure what quantity has been absorbed. There are some sub-dosage risks. The oral way is preferred.

Make sure you store medicine away from children’s reach. Once open, syrups are stored in the fridge.

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Baby has a big bump! How do I take care of it?

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Oops, baby bumped his head/knee/bum! No panic! It’s probably nothing bad, but definitely not a good experience for the little one. Here are some tips for quick relief.

Cold. After a choc, there are good changes that a bump will form. And to avoid a hardening of the bump into a big fat pigeon egg, cold can help. At cold’s contact, vessels will contract themselves and blood flow will be reduced. You can apply an ice cube in a washcloth or shower glove, so as not to burn baby’s skin upon contact. Another softer solution: fresh water soaked pads. Continue reading