Fine Motor Skill Development Through Sensorial Play: DB & DIY Edition

The value of sensory play for babies (and toddlers) is quite measurable. When we watch them discover and explore the world around them, their delight is apparent (and contagious). I’ve learned through watching my own little ones that sensory play is how babies can observe, explore and manipulate. It’s a great way to develop their fine/gross motor skills in a natural, joyful way.

Usually sensory play is known to be messy; using materials that an older baby can squish, mould, sort and taste. They are almost always activities that you need to hover over and be watchful of. I’ve rounded up a selection of mess-free DB toys, or toys that you can easily make at home for a baby to play with independently (or with you if you like) – all in their first year. Interesting items that are colourful, boldly patterned and at times, musical. Enjoy this fun selection of toys and books that engage most or all of the senses to stimulate and nurture your baby’s sensory development!

  • Discovery Through Play

    Discovery Through Play

    Where a baby’s natural senses develop through the the magic of sensorial play!

  • Disney Baby Amazing Animals™ Sing-Along Choo-Choo

    Disney Baby Amazing Animals™ Sing-Along Choo-Choo

    This vivid, adorable push train from Fisher Price features 3 darling Disney pals with posable, clicking joints and textured feet, great for little hands to touch and grasp. Lucky the dog has little rattle beads inside, the train lights up and has a wonderful selection of sing-a-long songs! This toy engages nearly all of the senses and is a top-notch pick for fine motor skill development.

    Available at a number of in-store and on-line shops!

  • Sensory Treasure Basket (DIY)

    Sensory Treasure Basket (DIY)

    A lovely idea found over on one of my favourite blogs. You can use safe objects from around the house, in varying size, colour, shape and texture to make up an ultimate basket of sensorial treasures! Ribbons, shells, wooden kitchen utensils, yarn, soft bristled brushes, a little water bottle filled up with rice or beans…use your imagination and have fun with it! They will too.

    Learn more over on Modern Parents Messy Kids

  • Disney It's a Small World: Furry Friends Book

    Disney It's a Small World: Furry Friends Book

    This whimsically illustrated, touch and feel board book will take your baby around the world!

    Available on Amazon

  • Cloud Mobiles (DIY Tutorial)

    Cloud Mobiles (DIY Tutorial)

    Especially during the infancy stage, mobiles are a great way to stimulate your baby’s sight. They are fascinated with the natural sway and high contrast found with most mobiles and eye-sight development is fostered as their eyes follow the gentle movements that come with naturally circulating air. This lovely mobile is one that you can all enjoy for many years to come!

    Get the free PDF patterns and instructions from Petit Poulou

  •  The Lion King Pumbaa 14

    The Lion King Pumbaa 14" Plush

    How adorable is this warthog?! I absolutely love the little plush bugs that baby can take in and out from under Pumbaa’s tongue, inviting your little one to engage in independent play finessing those fine motor skills.

    Available online via the Disney Store!

  • Crunchy Jellyfish (DIY Tutorial)

    Crunchy Jellyfish (DIY Tutorial)

    The vibrant colours, tags, soft textures and cellophane sewed up inside of this plush jellyfish cutie will be an impossible combination for your little ones senses to resist.

    Get the free pattern download and instructions via Kid Independent

  • Board Book: Who's that, Baby?

    Board Book: Who's that, Baby?

    Adorable prose with a little mirror next to your baby’s Disney pals on each page. An excellent way to promote self-discovery, naturally through mirror play. Because, if you con’t know by now…the best toy you can give a newborn is your face! Next up, it’s their own.

    Available on Amazon

  • THE LION KING - Simba's King-Sized Play Gym

    THE LION KING - Simba's King-Sized Play Gym

    The king of all quilted play yards awaits your little one! Cold patterns, bright colours and multiple repositionable toys meet music, lights and mirrors. This one stimulaties all the sensorial bases and engages both your babies gross and fine motor skill development!

    Available at a number of in-store and on-line shops!

  • Wooden Water Blocks

    Wooden Water Blocks

    The warmth of wood meets mess free water play with these unique and pretty blocks.

    Find them on Amazon

  • Plush Baby Blocks (DIY Tutorial)

    Plush Baby Blocks (DIY Tutorial)

    An easy project you can make at home. I found this tutorial a while ago and made the blocks for Abby’s 1st birthday. She loves them, as they are easy for her little hands grab, maneuver and stack. I used a bunch of different scrap fabric, in multiple textures, pattern and colours. You could also add little plastic mirrors on some of the panels and crinkle paper inside to make them really fantastic!

    Find the complete tutorial over on Wren Handmade

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