Skip to main content

Simple Transfer Work for Young Toddlers

The dark cold winter days are upon us right now. But, Teddy's love of water play is still going as strong as ever. So, I've recently put together a very simple transfer work for him to engage in some sensory-water play and have the opportunity to work on some practical scooping work. At 16-months old it was a huge hit, so I thought I would share. 

I don't do a ton of artificial transfer work at this age (or any age really.) I tend to want to create opportunities for Teddy to engage in more practical, practical life - that is actually scooping something from one bowl to the other in a meaningful way. Like scooping yogurt for snack, or peas onto his plate. But, from time to time, creating a work for the shelf is a fun extension of the real-life learning we are doing everyday. 

This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you.

This 2-minute set up was so simple! You need: 
  • Two bins/bowls/water safe containers - I just grabbed an extra I had in my storage room and an old deli container we use for kid work. 
  • Practice golf balls - I actually ordered these to replace some of the balls from this ball drop work, but turns out they didn't fit in my container! Oops, so this has been a fun way to still get some use out of them. Ping pong balls would work similarly, but the holes in these did add for some more drippy fun. 
  • A scoop - I grabbed a small wooden spoon from our kitchen, but I think it would work better with something a little deeper (I'm going to try this little strainer.) But honestly, it would work with so many 
  • Warm water 

I really didn't set any expectations for Teddy around this work. He was a little interested in moving the balls back and forth, but mostly in scooping and drinking the water. Which, that was fine too. It was a good reminder that children will get what they need from their work that they seek out. Our expectations can get in the way of allowing that exploration so I sat back and just watched him have fun. The towel kept the floor from getting too soaked, but he did need a whole new outfit. 

I've put the whole set up on his shelves so that he can choose to pull it out whenever he feels like it. I can set some boundaries around when I want to actually add water. So far, he has had a lot of fun just dumping the balls into the bin and collecting them again during those times when I cannot make water available. 

Just a reminder that he is not left alone with this work if water has been added. With this amount of water, this work needs supervision. 

Does your young toddler enjoy transfer work? What about water play?

This Montessori friendly toddler activity is an easy to put together DIY that works on fine motor skills. Plus water play is an easy sensory bin idea.



Anonymous said…
I'm pretty sure my 15 month old would just want to lift up the whole container and dump out the water...does Teddy not try this? Any way to work around this or just wait until my son has passed the dumping-water-out-of-everything phase? Thanks!
I would just gently stop and say, "the water stays in the bin." Teddy hasnt tried dumping it all yet, but it is pretty heavy so it's not something he could do quickly so I would just intervene.

Popular Posts

The Ultimate Montessori Toy List -- Birth to Five -- UPDATED 2020

When you are interested in Montessori, it can be difficult to know exactly what types of products you should get for your home. Or which types of "Montessori" materials are really worth the price. There are no rules about types of products can use the name Montessori which can add to the confusion. Not to mention, every toy manufacturer slaps the word "educational" on the package for good measure! 2020 UPDATE: This list is updated for another year! Enjoy a variety of Montessori friendly finds from both major retailers and smaller shops!  So, with this post, I'm going to try to help with this confusion! Here's a list of Montessori-friendly toys and materials for babies, toddlers and preschoolers.  First, let's clarify that there is no such thing as a "Montessori toy." Montessori never created toys, but only works for classroom settings. While there are many works that I recommend for home school use, you won't find these

Sensitive Periods from Birth to 6 - A Chart and Guide

Dr. Maria Montessori spent her life observing, studying, and writing about children. During her lifetime of work she discovered that young children move through a series of special times when they are particularly attracted to specific developmental needs and interests. She called these times, sensitive periods. During the sensitive period, children learn skills related to the sensitive period with ease. They don't tire of that work, but seek it, crave it and need it. When the sensitive period passes, this intense desire is gone, never to return.  That doesn't mean the skill is lost forever once the sensitive period is over. Instead, it just means that it will take a more conscious effort to learn. As Dr. Montessori explains,  This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you. "A child learns to adjust himself and make acquisitions in his sensitive periods. These are like a beam that lights interiorly a battery that furnishes energy. It is this sensibility which enables

Our Kids' Montessori Gift Lists 2020

With the holiday season upon us we've been making lists and gathering gifts for the Kavanaugh children. It's always a fun process of observing my children, seeing what they would really be interested in and making some decisions based on what I see. This year is different because I'm also making decisions knowing that we are looking at a very long and quiet winter ahead. So that's influencing the amount I will buy and the specific choices I will/have made.  Henry and Nora are also at the point, being into the second plane of development, where they heavily influence the items on the list and what is ultimately purchased. So, you'll see that while Montessori influences what I will purchase and what goes on their list, so does their own preferences and personality.  This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you.  Theodore Teddy is 14-months-old right now and as the fourth baby, we have so many toddler things. But, there are a few things I've still found tha