Whenever Buddy and I have fun with a messy activity, I like to have a water activity set up too. This naturally extends our play time and it means I get get him cleaned up without any protest – that’s a bonus on both counts!
After we had fun with our paper plate painting with edible paint Buddy enjoyed discovering sponges in his water tub.
Setting It Up
Obviously it requires a bit more preparation to set up two plays at once, however I find it reduces tears and tantrums when the messy play is over and the clean up operation begins.
This one was beautifully simple to set up as we played in the wet room. We don’t have a bath in our house and the bucket he is playing with is actually his bath tub. Fortunately he loves bath time so he is always happy to play with his tub.
I set the tub up with a variety of household sponges in the corner of the room. Buddy didn’t even notice it until he grew bored with painting and began to explore other things in the room.
Buddy was excited to see his bath tub filled with objects. He cracked out a huge smile and plunged straight in.
As expected he fished out the cow sponge. He loves that thing and it is always a nightmare to prise it for his grasp at the end of bath time. He loves chewing it, engorging it with water and trying to drink it, waving it…. The list is endless.
He played with it for a good while before (finally) looking into the tub again. This time he located the big shower puff sponge.
He spent some time flapping it about and pulling at the netting. He has never touched this sponge before so it was fun to see him investigate it.
He got soaking wet playing with the sponges but really enjoyed it!
Next I popped him in the tub to scrub up and to explore the other sponges. He enjoyed chewing on the scouring sponge, I think it felt nice against his sore gums.
He enjoyed touching the scouring pad and spent time scratching his nails through it. He seemed pretty impressed by the noise it made.
He then had a good prod at all of the cloths and sponges and enjoyed splashing them in the water, cleaning himself in the process!
This was a really fun way to clean up from an exciting messy play. Buddy had fun and we avoided all melt downs! Now I’m just biding my time until he can help me clean up the mess we make too!
So, does anyone else have any tips on making clean up easier? Comments make me smile so please feel free to share!