Designing activities for your toddler can be so effective when the play is kept simple. This Tape Animal Parade is the perfect example of a simple play idea being engaging, inspiring and loads of fun for your toddler!
Tape Animal Parade
You must give this activity a go! It is so quick and easy to set up! While it looks plainly simple for us adults, all three of my kids love it! The Tape Animal Parade is super simple with its brief. This simplicity makes it so easy to be a solid foundation to inspire more organic, creative play.
What you need to set up your Tape Animal Parade
- Masking / Painters Tape
- Animal figurines
This activity is really versatile! If your toddler isn’t keen on animals, swap them out for what they do like – exploit their interests! If you are victim to learning all the names of all the dinosaurs, you are allowed to use their love for dinos to engage them in play – without the guilt!
It would be worth checking to ensure your tape does not react to the surface you are planning on adhering it too. Perhaps test a small, inconspicuous section before going crazy with long lashings of tape.
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How to set up your Tape Animal Parade
This is where you can either keep things simple or add an extra learning element to your child’s play.
Using your tape, create your runway! Now, you can either keep it as simple straight lines or get creative. You could create shapes, shorter/ longer lengths, numbers, letters, use different colours and so many other configurations!
Why not have your toddler assist in setting up their activity? The sense of ownership is so fulfilling for them and helps with
Once the tape is down, supply your toddler with their toys and ask them to line their toys up on the tape.
This is the part I find really interesting. This afternoon when we set this up at our place, Miss 3’s first instinct was to line her animals up so she could fit the most on the lines without any tails or limbs hanging over the edge. Miss 6 took a different approach by lining hers up by their country of origin.
How did your little one line up their toys?
Ways to Parade
While this activity brief is quite structured, for some children it may still be too open ended. For those who thrive with a bit more direction, here are some play suggestions for you.
- Number of legs
- Fur, feathers, scales
- Carnivores / Herbivores
- Fly, swim, slither, run
- Preference / Favourite to least favourite
These are also great ways to explore grouping of objects by similar attributes – an important mathematical skill!
Other than participating in the activity, the next best thing to develop an understanding of the activity is talking about it. Talk about what they think the activity will involve before they start.
Discuss and ask questions while they are playing.
Reflect on the experience after they have finished playing.
All these questions and conversations will help them understand what they are doing and build their vocabulary to be able to communicate what they are thinking.
Here are some open-ended questions that will assist your child in comprehending this Tape Animal Parade
- What do you think we are going to do with a roll of tape and your toys?
- How many animals do you think will fit on the line?
- Which tape shape do you think would work best for this activity?
- Who else do you think might like to make a tape parade?
- When have we done something like this before?
- What do you think is going to be the most challenging part?
- Why are you starting with that animal?
- What has made you chose to line them up like this?
- If you had to walk across a tape line, how long do you think you could walk before falling off?
- How are some of these animals the same?
- What are some things that are different about these animals?
- Would you do something differently next time?
- How could you make this activity more challenging next time?
- Would you do something different next time?
- What else could we do this activity with?
While setting up your Tape Animal Rescue may be simple enough, there are a huge number of skills that are able to be developed through engagement with this activity.
Here are some skills that your child could be exposed to through play with this activity:
- Hand-eye coordination
- Crossing the midline
- Identifying similar attributes
- Fine motor skills
- Cognitive development
- Higher order thinking
- Identifying patterns
Learning through play – it’s so much more than just having fun!
I would love to learn what your toddler does with their Tape Animal Parade! Please feel welcome to share your experience with this toddler activity in our Play Inspired Mum Facebook Community.
Dani D x
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