A water transfer activity that’s all business
My son and I were having a difference of napping opinion yesterday. Once nap time ended as a total bust, we were left with a difference of attitude opinion. It happens. Not all days go perfectly.
He needed something calming to do. Something quick and easy to focus on that would allow him to relax. In my world, nothing says relaxing toddler more than doing a water transfer (obviously, right?!).
This water transfer activity was exactly what we needed
My goal for this activity was to give my son something to do that was quiet, engaging and required oodles of focus and concentration. Once I spied my mini turkey baster, I knew exactly what kind of activity he would do.
Watching me set up this activity, my son was a buzz of excitement. What was Mom doing with that little turkey baster? Why was she getting out baby brother’s food jars?
Oh my little toddler friend, just you wait.
And then it became a 3 part activity
I was shocked that even though this was a very simple activity, it ended up having three distinct parts to it.
And I couldn’t have been happier!
The more an activity can be like an Ogre/onion – the better. We want layers and layers to peel our way through.
How we stretched water transfer into 20 minutes
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- Empty baby food jars
- Mini turkey baster
- Storage container to catch spills
- Food coloring
- Ice cube tray
The best advice I can give for this activity
You need to model, model, model how to use a turkey baster. Channel your inner Julia Child and explain the ins and outs of using a baster. This is a tough tool to learn to use.
Oh and second best advice: start with primary colors only.
I gave my son a little parameter in this activity: only put a single color in each cube space. You can have however many yellow, blue, or red spaces as you want but don’t mix them. That’s come next…
This made him concentrate so hard!
He was laser focused at slowly and steadily transferring this water. It was amazing to watch him.
Once he finished, I gave him his step 2 instructions. Now, pick a new color to mix into each of the colors you transferred. So where he had transferred red – now he added yellow and you know what he made.
That’s what he made. Because changing colors is a toddler magic trick. He went through slow and steady AGAIN mixing up his secondary colors and was so proud.
He loved experimenting with hue. Seeing light green and dark green come to life was amazing.
And now the 3rd part.
After finishing his secondary color mixing, I showed my son how to “suck back up” each slot in the ice cube tray and transfer the water BACK to the jars. And he did this by color.
When all was said and done, he had three jars: purple, orange, and green. We were right back where we started, but with three new colors.
He called them his potions and he lined them all up to proudly show Dad.
It’s amazing how a spoiled nap time can sometimes lay the groundwork for a perfect little activity. I’m keeping this one in my back pocket for future missed nap days. The quiet, the concentration, the laser focus: you can’t get much better than that for an easy water transfer activity!