5 Ways to Play With…Socks
Choosing a toy that sparks your child's imagination doesn't require going any further than your dresser.
1. It’s a match! Collect three pairs of socks (each pair should look very different than the others). Lay the socks in a grid pattern, mixing them up so pairs are not right next to each other. Help your toddler find sock matches. (As your child is able to master this game, add new pairs of socks to make a bit more challenging.)
2. Find the dinosaur eggs. Ball up five or six socks and hide them around the room (always leaving part of them visible). Give your toddler a basket or bag and ask them to find the hidden dinosaur eggs.
3. Guess: What is it? Choose four or five small, familiar objects (a baby spoon, a small toy car, a block, a crayon, etc.). Keep these out of sight. Place them, one at a time, inside a sock (ideally one with no match, that you don’t mind stretching out!). Let your toddler put their hand inside the sock to touch the object and guess what it is.
4. Play Sockball. Do you have an old gym sock with no match? Stick a few other solo socks inside the gym sock, knot, and cut off the end so you have a ball. (Make a few of these, if you have a bunch of solo socks.) Place a box or laundry basket in the room and have your child practice tossing the sockballs into the basket. You can also stack some paper or plastic cups on the floor and see if your child wants to throw their sockball and knock down the tower.
5. Sort the rainbow. Find socks of different colors (black, white, blue, red, etc.). Using crayons or markers, color a square of each color on paper plates. Lay the paper plates in a row and help your toddler match the black sock to the black square, the blue sock to the blue square, etc.
About Baby Steps
This article was featured in Baby Steps, a ZERO TO THREE newsletter for parents and caregivers. Each issue offers science-based information on a topic of interest to parents and caregivers of young children—from sleep to challenging behaviors, and everything in between.
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