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Sensory Citrus Water Play

Young children love to explore things using their mouths so making something taste safe is absolutely essential. Combining water play with taste play is a great sensory experience for babies and toddlers. 

For babies who can sit up unaided and who have established weaning this is a lovely activity. Simply sitting your child in a tab of water on a hot day is a great play activity in itself but adding some citrus fruits is adds a lovely taste and smell experience for your child. Citrus fruits have a very unique sour taste which young children may not have experienced so this activity is a great way for them to explore. 

I chose to use lemons, oranges and limes but you could add whatever fruits you like. I simply cut into quite thick slices and left the peel on so that they would be easy to pick up. I then filled a storage tub with warmish water and placed the fruit into the tub. If you do not want your child to sit in the tub you could make the water colder which would be great on a really warm day. Obviously adult supervision is required at all times. Handy tip is to have a drying area ready and prepped especially if your child is sitting in the water. 

My nine month old is quite sturdy while sitting but just to stop her slipping in the box I sat her on a tea towel. It was a beautiful sunny day so I set this up in the garden in the shade of our trees. At first she just enjoyed kicking her legs in the water, making the water splash. She then started to explore the citrus fruit, firstly just touching and squeezing the fruit. She then started to explore it with her mouth. It's safe to say that she found the taste sour. She had never tasted lemon or lime before so it certainly was an experience. 

This is not only a great sensory activity for babies and toddlers, my four year old thoroughly enjoyed picking out the fruit with tongs. You could also add scoops, colanders, sieves, droppers etc. Also allowing children the opportunity to independently explore can throw up lots of unexpected playing and learning as my four year old made a tower of fruit completely unprompted. 

More sensory play ideas include:

Edible Farm Sensory Play

Valentines Angel Delight Sensory Play

Edible Yogurt Paint

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