Rolling Around

by Deb on September 10, 2010

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Babies are all about cause and effect, and big kids have a bit of fun with it too 😉  This is a really simple one we used to play with a lot, and still do with a slightly different rig.

Get a large piece of material of some sort, a wrap is perfect.  In fact wraps are second only to balloons in my all time essential resources because they can be used for so many things.  If you have two people or an older toddler you can hold one side each.  Otherwise tuck it under a couch or chair cushion.  Then put something small on it like a ball or balloon and use the cloth to roll it around. There are so many variations:

  • Different things,
  • Different weights,
  • Different sizes,
  • More than one thing,
  • Bouncing,
  • Hitting from underneath

And if you have two adults and a strong cloth (or one adult and a small baby), put the baby on and roll them around!

It’s simple, but there is a lot going on in this activity.

Babies get to experience different weights, develop co-ordination and see how they can affect things indirectly.  This is part of developing a sense of cause and effect.

For toddlers and preschoolers it is a fun way to test what they know about gravity and how movement and forces work.  They can make predictions of the form “If I want it to go over there, I should do this” then test them and get immediate feedback and a chance to change or refine their ideas.

Older kids can move on to more sophisticated testing, comparing different objects and coming up with their own informal rules of which will bounce the highest or roll the fastest.

None of this needs to be discussed, just giggled over! This post is part of the We Play linkup at Childhood 101.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Maxabella September 10, 2010 at 10:05 am

We have lots of fun with balloons around here. They are the best fun and now I see that they’re educational as well. Yay! x
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amandab September 14, 2010 at 12:30 pm

The balloons have been out at our house this week, but we have never done this. May be something for a little later today 🙂

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maryanne September 14, 2010 at 9:59 pm

This is a great idea – learning through play is the best way to learn!
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Kelly B September 19, 2010 at 2:47 pm

Did someone say balloons? Such a fun way to learn.
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Christie - Childhood 101 September 20, 2010 at 8:48 pm

What a great idea. Immy loves taking balloons, small balls or soft toys on the trampoline and experimenting with what happens as she bounces. Recently her monkey lay on its tummy and its tail flew up and down with each bounce, she thought it was hilarious.
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