Why do it?

  • Playing with water provides multiple opportunities for open-ended play.
  • It can promote language, cognitive and sensory activities.
  • Water play can be calming, exciting or require focus and concentration.
  • It also supports hand–eye co-ordination.
  • It’s a fun activity and can be enjoyed outside or inside.
  • Water play doesn’t have to be only at bath time.

How to do it

  • You don’t need a large quantity of water for a toddler to enjoy themselves — an ice cream container full with a small yogurt container to dip and pour is enough.
  • Water play requires constant supervision at this age and stage.
  • An old towel on the floor will help to avoid anyone slipping in puddles.
  • For toddlers, gumboots and puddles can provide lots of fun for stomping and splashing in. Dropping stones in and watching and listening to the results is great too.
  • On warmer days, put a baby bath or large container outside and fill it with lukewarm water. Add plastic cups for dipping and pouring, sponges to squeeze and things that float.
  • Keep alert there may also be a small child in there, too!

Using more te reo Māori

Wai Water
He ipu aihikirīmi ice cream container
Tāora Towel
Pākete Bucket
Patapata Drip
Riringi Pour
Uwhiuwhi Sprinkle
Māku Wet
Pōrutu Splashing
Kapu Cup
Kōpūpūtai Sponge
Kōhatu Stone
Rakau Wood
Tere Float
Totohu Sink
He makariri tēnei wai This water is cold
He mahana tēnei wai This water is warm
Pārekareka Fun
Kamupūtu Gumboot
Kia mataara To be alert, vigilant