I always wish I had those big padded gross motor mats for Peanut to balance on and crawl all over. You know, the ones that are hundreds of dollars for one piece? So, I searched for a way to create some gross motor activities I could do at home where Peanut was able to balance and crawl on things. I got my inspiration when cleaning out the garage and I found several scrap pieces of 2×4.
2×4 3-4 feet long
To set up this activity all you have to do is find a place with a soft, but flat surface to put your 2×4 on, inside or out. Place the 2×4 and let your toddler go!
This is another one of the activities I let my mom do with Kennedy while she was here for a visit. Since my mom is a teacher as well, she’s pretty good at leading these activities as well. She showed Peanut what to do and helped her walk across the board by holding her hand and leading her across.
Every time Peanut crossed the board she offered less and less help, until Peanut was going the length of the board on her own. Of course she was stepping off, falling down, and all over…but she was getting some great balance practice in!
In the end, Peanut ended up working on her arm muscles for her gross motor activity and not her balance. But, remember, we go with the flow when we’re playing with toddlers!
We’ll come back to this activity again and add some difficulty to the balance challenge, but for now it’s a staple in our backyard because she liked using it so much.