The sensory panel is a structure used to develop the baby’s senses. Perfect to use from the first months.
The sensory panel is a simple and fun game that develops the baby’s senses from the first months. Sensory development begins as early as the first weeks of fetal life and is closely related to intelligence and the development of different cognitive skills.
Children love to explore the new world by touching and moving with their hands and feet. Between 8 and 18 months is the right time to offer him an activity of this type, so green light to locks, padlocks, doors to open, keys, to perform real actions on objects especially for him. It is true, on the market there are many games with lights and colors, but sometimes they are too stimulating. The sensory panel, on the other hand, gives calm to the little one and easily leads him to know himself and the objects around him. Let’s find out what they are for and how to create one.
The sensory panel: what it is
The sensory panel is a wooden bulletin board on which various objects are applied that the child can touch and use freely. Each panel can be made with recycled material and with objects that are easy to find at home.
The sensory panels develop:
- manual skills
This learning method can be proposed up to 3 years later in fact initially a simpler sensory panel will be used, with few objects, and then new activities will be added for older children.
The sensory panel: how it works
The sensory panels can be very different from each other and can propose different activities. In this way the child will be free to touch and manipulate everyday objects that are normal for us, but new and interesting for him. This type of game is widely used in the Montessori Method and is practiced in about 65 thousand schools around the world. With this method, the goal is to give the child freedom, at his own pace, while always maintaining a high level of attention. Montessori sensory panels intrigue children a lot, precisely because different activities are presented. Here are a few:
- open and close a lock
- fasten and unfasten a ribbon
- to let flow
The objects that can be inserted are:
- plastic bottles
- pressure bulbs
Then there are the simpler panels, perfect for developing the tactile sense, where you can use:
- pieces of different fabrics
- objects with various sizes and / or colors
How to build a sensory panel
The sensory panel has a rigid base made with material such as plywood, very thick cardboard, or other materials that act as a base, on which materials and objects are fixed that stimulate the attention and curiosity of the child, involving all the senses.
Let’s start with the simplest one, that one tactile. Needed:
- wooden or plywood tablet
- fabric of different colors and textures
- sand paper
- kitchen sponge
- caps of different materials
- hot glue
With hot glue, attach to the panel all the materials cut out with different geometric shapes. You can also color the wooden board to make it even more interesting.
Sensory panel for older children
The sensory panel can also be used after 3 years.
In this case, you need:
- a wooden board for the base
- cable clips for attaching more difficult objects such as chains
- about 20 minutes
Objects to attack:
- three different chains made of heavy metal, plastic and light metal
- a sliding lock
- a chain lock
- a light switch
- a mirror or something reflective
- pieces of carpet
- a doorstop
You can also add shoe ribbons, an old telephone, a doorknob, in short, you can really indulge yourself!
Updated on 02.21.2021