Saturday, October 13, 2007

Developing Some Ball Sense

What do you see in the picture above? A plastic bottle and a ball?
You know what my kids see in the picture above? A bat and a ball. An opportunity to PLAY!
That's what KokoD has been occupying himself (and me) with the last few days. He would ask me to throw the ball and he would bat it with the bottle.

I believe children have an affinity for balls. That's why my house has several types and sizes of balls - football, basketball, rubber ball, golf ball, small ball, big ball, exercise ball etc.... Balls are great for children's physical development.

You could start playing ball with your kids as early as 8 months old. Well, that's what I did with Baby D. I would sit opposite him and roll the ball, bounce the ball, throw the ball etc.... And the whole time naming the actions so he would pick up on the vocabulary (by the way, I learned this at Kindermusik). Eventually, he learned to throw the ball too. Watch the short video below. Sorry it's so dark. Obviously my video making skills have need of improvement :)


video

After learning to throw the ball, he learned to throw other things too. Hehehe. Maybe it wasn't such a good idea after all. But anyway, that little ball could occupy him for quite a while. He would throw it and then chase after it. Then put it in his mouth. Then drop it and chase after it again.

Other kinds of ball play as the kids grow:
1. Football or soccer. Kids just love kicking a ball around.
2. Just simple throw and catch. Might be mundane to you after a while but the kids love it coz' they are learning a new skill.
3. Teach them to bounce the ball, as they do in basketball.
4. Play "monkey". If there are no other siblings, you'll need 2 parents for this.
5. Throw the ball into a basket or box (target throwing).
6. Bowling. Recycle all those plastic bottles. Line them up and have your kid roll the ball to knock them over.
7. If you don't have time to play with them, teach them to throw the ball against a wall and then catch it. Or just toss it into the air and then catch.
8. Besides using the plastic bottle as a bat, my kids also use the bottle like a golf club or hockey stick to whack the ball.

Mamas Bag of Tricks:
Fill your house with all sorts of balls. Not only is it fun to play but helps build physical skills and coordination. Don't just limit yourself to building up their intelligence. Build up their ball sense too.

12 comments:

  1. oh, Lian, my gal throw her big/small balls all over the place! Using the bottle as a bat is a good idea...*having fun hitting the ball!*

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  2. hey.. thx for the tips.. was looking for ways to occupy my little one.. maybe when he is a bit older.. hehe

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  3. How creative! I'm not sure if I'd try this in an apartment though, haha....maybe when we're in the park.

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  4. Hi L--my little one likes to play with a ball. I like that plastic bottle and ball--nice idea (smile)!

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  5. My kids love balls too. Especially Izaac, thats the first thing he would take when we went visiting.

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  6. Thanks for the tips. BTW my friend did mentioned that balls help child to lern concentrate. Not sure how it works, but play with balls is fun.

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  7. good idea...hmmm must go n find bottle now...

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  8. Hi Lian,

    WOnderful idea. Creative mummies can save lots of money, eh?

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  9. Mummy to Qiqi:
    Maybe she can try to bat it into a basket. That way you will accomplish 2 things at the same time. Hahaha.

    Sting:
    Definately an activity that will keep them busy for awhile. Jot it down somewhere so you don't forget.

    Big Pumpkin:
    Your girl must be a big hitter eh?

    TNP:
    Hope you guys have plenty of fun.

    mamatang:
    Kids are just naturally attracted to balls. Your Izaac another classic example.

    vickylow:
    I'm sure it does more good than we actually know. Who says fun can't be beneficial.

    chanelwong:
    Hope Jeriel have lots of fun.

    jo-N:
    Actually ah, it's not my idea but my kids. Heheheh.

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  10. Great ideas! Thanks for sharing, Lian. I'm going to try it with my little one soon. :)

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  11. So true. If there is any toy in the whole playroom that gets the most use it is the balls. I should get a few more thought that are of different sizes. Good ideas.

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  12. Mummee's cousin bought Caitlin (3yrs old in Nov) a box of 100 balls. Yes, 100 balls! These are tennis ball-sized lightweight empty plastic balls that was supposed to go with an air-filled jump-up-&-down castle (hard to explain but I have pictures on my site).

    While she would love to empty the box on the floor, we limit her to taking out no more than 6 at a time.

    She's taken to juggling the balls. No not really, it's just what she calls juggling after watching Jo Jo (Playhouse Disney) too much.

    What she'd do is toss the balls over her head & chuckle.

    Yup, juggling!

    I also have a freebie air-filled BP beach ball that we bring along to the pool...

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