Jingle Bell Experiment Station

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Bells. That signature Santa sound. Literally ringing of reindeer prancing across the sky, its a magical sound. Last year we gave Squirrel a jingle bell shaker toy around Christmas at around 9 months old, and he loved it, and now, at a whopping great big 20 months, when daddy bought him his own box of big, beautiful golden bells, he took one in each hand, looked them over, inspected their shine and stars…
And them shook them hard all over the place like a knee height maniac and melted into giggles and nose scrunching gurns.

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Spheres are all kinds of awesome, and these are like balls that go up to 11. I love jingle bells too, so its my mission to find as many toddler activities as i can to use these bells.

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We are starting here, getting up close to a good shape and getting to know it, beyond the crazed flingful rattling and decorating purposes.

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I laid out a tray with a bunch of containers, tubes and other bits with bells ‘behaving’ in different ways, from hiding to hanging, and let him get on it.

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One thing i have learned in our toddler year so far, is that although actual verbal counting is beyond him at the moment, he knows full well how many there are of certain things, and so will keep looking for individuals until they are all rallied, and these bells are no exception.
He went through each of them, looking attentively at the bell ‘hidden’ under the clear pot, and noticing the convenient little nook on top of the pots, perfect for perching the balls on, and wrestling the hanging bell off of the wooden spoon until he possessed all 6.

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What with harbouring the compulsive need to sort everything into any given receptacle, that was next on his agenda. That tray was just too inviting.

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Then ‘fed’ them to the reindeer for a bit. Seems legit.

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Next up, that bucket. Oh the irresistible sound of jingle bells tossed into a metal bucket.
He went for a little walk with them and the reindeer.

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Then, having noticed that mama had ridiculously neglected to cover the floor in toys that afternoon, he decided it was worth remedying (my hero, right?) and moved everything onto the floor, where he could stretch and play but also reinvent what i had set up for him and explore from new angles. Dropping the bells through the tubes until it was so full it would no longer drop and we could see them at the top.

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We rehid a bunch of them under various pots and played “where’d they go?” for a bit. He loves these games, his new phrase being “there-y’is!”

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We had lots of fun thinking experimentally and getting to know these great seasonal tools for a good half an hour.
I’ve got a few other ideas lined up to use them in up coming activities too!

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This post is for Unit 3. Winter & Christmas.

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