Have you noticed that from a young age, babies and children are immediately drawn to balls? Balls are a fascinating and responsive object that instantly promote early cognitive and motor development. When added to a ball pit, many more benefits are created!
Open Ended Play
A ball pit can become anything your child imagines it to be. As a parent, allow plenty of opportunities for your child to explore at their own pace and decide how they want to play! Today it might be a deep sea ocean, tomorrow a volcano!
Cooperative Play & Social Skills
Ball pits provide amazing opportunities for cooperative play. Whether it be with siblings or friends, children can play together with shared goals! This gives young children practice with communicating their needs, empathy, sharing, turn taking, setting roles, and being imaginative together.
Improve Motor Skills
Another huge benefit of a ball pit is that they can improve gross motor skills (large muscle strength) as well as fine motor skills. When referring to fine motor skills, we are talking about the small muscles in childern’s hands, wrists, and fingers in coordination with their eyes. Besides jumping in, playing in a ball pit promotes a sensory experience where children grab, throw, catch, roll, count, and sort the balls as they play. These are all key to improving both fine and gross motor development in children.
Balance and Coordination
Ball pits encourage movement. Outdoor games and play can be weather dependent. Having a ball pit set up indoors for play, allows for ongoing daily balance and coordination development. You can set up a slide, a jump, or an obstacle course with your ball pit, to promote these skills even more.
Most importantly, children will be benefiting from all of the above while having tons of fun!
Amanda is the owner of A Balanced Childhood, a website where she shares the activities that she does with her children, aimed to foster children's learning, creativity and other skills. Check her out on Instagram @abalancedchildhood as well!