Need a fun baby activity? You got it, friend!
Inside this post, I’ll share exactly how to turn an egg carton into an engaging activity for your 1 to 2-year-old baby. Yes, really.
Ready for some easy fun? Let’s go!
Full disclosure: I realize that this doesn’t look like a super fun game.
I mean, an egg carton and q-tips? I can almost hear you thinking: Um, Katie… this belongs in my recycling bin not next to my baby.
I know, friend.
I’m not here to make a fool out of you by making you dig through your recyclables for no reason. There is a VERY good reason why you should go dumpster diving today…
Before I send you off to go jump into your trash can, let’s chat about why this is fun for baby…
Why Do a Fun Baby Activity at Home?
That’s a bit of a loaded question. For me, I didn’t really know what to “do” with my first baby.
- I loved her.
- I stared at her.
- And, I pumped a lot of milk for her (TMI).
But, the real magic happened when I learned about RIE philosophy.
What is RIE philosophy?
I’m about to get a little technical, so stick with me, k??
RIE stands for Resource for Infant Educators. Broadly, it is a philosophy that regards infants as active, engaged learners; which means that we, as parents or infant caregivers, should speak to babies as capable, growing individuals. Instead of thinking that they’re “just” babies.
Here’s a quick synopsis of the philosophy:
The basis of Magda’s Gerber’s RIE philosophy is respect for, and trust in the baby to be an initiator, an explorer, and a self learner. Magda encouraged parents and caregivers to provide: An environment for the child that is physically safe, cognitively challenging and emotionally nurturing. Source
As a quick example, my husband and I often passed our daughter off to one another without saying anything to her. As I learned more about RIE, we adapted to say things to my daughter like, “Lillian, is it okay if Daddy holds you now?” If she shook her head “no” or leaned towards me, I wouldn’t pass her off to my husband.
Spoiler alert: this wasn’t as natural to learn as it sounds. So, don’t feel out of the loop if you haven’t been doing this!
But, what does this have to do with a fun baby activity?
I learned that my baby was always learning even with little tasks that seemed mundane or uninteresting to me.
Like an egg carton and q-tips.
Even if this doesn’t appeal to us 30-somethings, this does appeal to most 12-18 month olds!
At least, that’s what my fellow moms have told me over on Instagram…
Supplies For This Fun Baby Activity
- Egg Carton
- Q-tips (just a few)
Now, all you need to do is prep that takes 2 minutes or less…
How to Make Q-Tip Push Game
- Turn your egg carton over
- Poke holes in the bottom with scissors and make each hole bigger by pushing a pencil through
- Make sure a q-tip can fit through each hole
Just show baby how you can push a q-tip through a hole and your baby will catch on quickly. This activity is pure magic.
And, all you have to do is go digging through your recyclables without looking like a fool.
I know you can do it.
Want more baby inspiration?
I’ve got you covered!
You can see over 45+ ideas here or 10 activities for active babies here.
Love this! I’m interested to try it with my 12 month old, but worried he’ll just want to eat/ try to swallow the q-tips? Any advice ?
Katie Joiner says
Hi Jennifer! Yes. I completely understand. Safety is my number one priority too! When I did this with my son, he never once mouthed the q-tips. I happened to introduce it to him at *just* the right time, but every kid is different! If it were me, I’ve put out a few q-tips and a few popsicle sticks. See which one your 12 month old reaches for. Then, show your baby how to fit them in the hole. If he/she mouths the objects too much, just put it away and try again in the next few months. When it is the right timing, this activity is MAGIC. It’s totally worth the wait if you have to put it away and try again.
Also, I’ve got quite a few activities for younger babies over on instagram. If you’re over there, DM me and I can tag you on some younger baby activities. Hope that helps! ~Katie