Baby crawled over and climbed straight on top of the box, where she remained all afternoon until bedtime (give or take having her dinner and bath!) She was totally mesmerised by the light and loved being able to play at such a convenient height. Because of the size of the box, all three of them were able to play at the same time with enough room each, which is a huge bonus for us.
We added the gorgeous liquid colour blocks that they got for Christmas and this was the perfect way to explore them. When stacked together new colours can be made and the big girls had fun predicting which ones would combine to form which new colour.
Colour Water Blocks
Then I remembered the lovely coloured bingo chips that we have in our cupboard full of bits and pieces, and they looked gorgeous against the light. Cakie and Pop counted them, lined them up, made patterns, scooped them into cups and layered them up.
Baby loved these too, and under close supervision not to eat any, she was able to use a pincer grasp to pick them up and drop them into clear plastic cups and on top of the liquid blocks. She returned to that activity all afternoon and seemed to love the sound they made as they fell!
At one point we had trapped a low branch from the Christmas tree under the box lid by mistake, and Cakie pointed out that it was making a silhouette (we’ve been looking at Winter tree silhouettes this week in nature!) I grabbed some left over tracing paper and suggested she used it to trace the outline.
She loved this new drawing activity and I think there are many exciting new things we could try together using this method. Some crafters and tattoo artists use light boxes for very similar purposes.
After we have finished the initial burst of play with our new toy, I will pack the lights into a bag and store them inside the box ready for another day. There are hundreds of possibilities for light box play and learning ideas and it is suitable for all ages, from babies to much older children.
What they are learning as they play:
sensory:investigating materials using all the senses
science: understanding silhouettes, shadows, light, colour mixing
maths: counting, sorting, pattern making, filling and emptying
motor skills: developing hand-eye coordination, pincer grasp, scooping, pouring, tipping, moving, stacking, balancing