Heuristic Play (Everyday Object Play)

I have never been a huge toy person, even before children I always thought a lot of toys were pointless.  As a child, we never had many toys and much preferred the outdoors, imaginary games or lego if we played indoors.  I am not perfect and I don’t want to deprive my children of something but I still try and keep our toys to a minimum.

On my journey with my own children, I came across Heuristic Play, which is the formal term used for babies/toddlers playing with everyday objects.

Heuristic play is very peaceful, out with the plastic toys that are loud and colourful and feel the same.  Bring a sense of calm, with objects that are tactile and used or seen in the everyday.

When Frankie was around 6-9 months and sitting comfortably on her own we introduced her to a treasure basket.   The treasure basket contained everyday items such as wooden spoons, a set of measuring spoons (which she loved jingling together), shells, a felt ball, a piece of wool and so on.

When introducing the treasure basket, it’s always good to have a clean and tidy space, free from other distractions.   Sit your child down and just observe how they interact with the items.  

Other items you could add are sponges, wooden rings, pumice stones, pinecones and anything from the kitchen that is safe for a child to play with.  Try and stay away from plastic items. Pinterest has some great ideas for treasure baskets.

**Please note when creating a treasure basket, always choose items that are not a choking hazard, small stones or shells, beads etc.

2 Replies to “Heuristic Play (Everyday Object Play)”

  1. That’s so cool! Oliver loves playing with empty tissue boxes and all sorts of stuff I have laying around, and he loves pegs so much! Takes them out, throws them around, puts them into the tissue box and out and then into another container. He spends ages playing like that!

    Liked by 1 person

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