Here are the materials we started off with on the shelves at the beginning of January. The shelves are from Ikea and are bolted to the wall. I really like them because there is a separate compartment for each material which makes them easy to keep organised. They are also great for pulling up on and cruising along. Both Baby J and Sweetpea have been shown all of these materials. Sweetpea is cruising so is able to get anything on her own but Baby J still has to be given something unless I put him beside the shelves.
Starting on the top right. A simple empty wipes box with a long silk scarf inside. I thought this would be a bigger hit than it was actually. They both seemed to be more interesting in the lid than pulling the scarf out.
This is a Pringles container which I covered with material. I poked a hole in the lid and the bottom and threaded a long ribbon through and then tied beads to the ends. Both babies enjoy pulling the beads from one side to the other.
Stacking or nesting cups from Ikea. I figured a close up pic wasn't necessary.
This material is one that I ordered on line. It is basically a bead on a serpentine wire. I've put this on the shelf and once they have mastered this I will put out a more complicated one that we have.
Sensory bottles. I bought these plastic travel bottles from the Dollar store. They contain colored water, beans, oatmeal, feathers and dimes.
On the bottom right are soft stacking blocks from Ikea.
A basket of tactile beanbags. Each one is made from a different textured material and filled with rice.
The treasure basket. Each week I change this up. Sweetpea is in the sensitive period for language so I am now doing a theme for each basket and presenting it to her with the first period lesson. This basket is for bathroom things but we've also done one with kitchen items.
I found this on a local used toy website. It comes with a hammer but at the moment I've just introduced it without and the babies push the balls with their hands. The balls roll out the bottom. This is a favorite of both babies. Baby J also loves to hit the balls together as they make a wonderful noise.
The ball or "rolling things" basket. Baby J is desperate to move so I put together this basket of ball like objects for him.
Homemade Imbucare box with cylinder block. To make these I bought three wooden tissue boxes from the craft store. My husband cut a large circle in the side and covered the top with acrylic with a hole cut into it the size of the block. We made three of these but I have just introduced the first one.
So those are the items I started off with. It seems like a lot but I only change one item a week plus the treasure basket so both babies have a chance to become very familiar with the materials and come back again and again to work with them. I will be posting about our experiences with this environment soon. The homemade materials come from ideas from around the Internet.