This is such an easy sensory activity and the preschoolers and the toddlers love it.
Just take a container or your water/sand table and fill with soil. Add a few potatoes and hide them in the soil. Then with a few plastic shovels or table spoons children can dig in the soil to find the potatoes! So easy.
To prevent soil on the floor or carpet, just put a drop cloth or plastic table cloth on the floor under the water/sand table. Clean up becomes so much easier!
Be sure to talk about any guidelines you and the children have about digging the potatoes before the children start to dig!
Observe the child/children at play. This will give you alot of information that you can use to choose how to respond to each child. This also helps you to see what skills each child has.
For example, you could
- ask the child if they want to wash the potatoes after digging them out of the soil
- read a book about potatoes. The child may be interested in learning more about a potato
- ask if they have eaten potatoes before
- ask if they have potatoes at home or in the garden
- provide more than one type of potato and talk about colors and names
- ask “How many potatoes are there?” “How do you know?” “Can you show me with your fingers?”
- describe what she did by saying “You put the spoon under the potato to lift it up out of the soil.”
- ask “Would you like to get anything else to help to dig up the potatoes. Shall we go look to see what else we have that you can use?”
- ask “What does the soil feel like?” “What does the potato feel like?” “Do they feel the same?”
- ask “Are all the potatoes the same size?” “How many potatoes are big?”
This simple sensory potato dig activity is sure to be relaxing and enjoyable for many children.