Most parents these days are aware of the importance of sensory play for children. Thanks to Zimpli kids, products such as Gelli play and Slime Baff make access to this very important type of play simple, hassle free, and most of all fun! The lovely guys over at Zimpli Kids sent me a bundle of products for us to have some sensory fun play with. Read on to find out more about sensory play and our review of Gelli and Slime products from Zimpli Kids.
Why is Sensory Play So Important
Sensory play is named so because it stimulates the senses and has an important role in a child’s development. Sensory play allows children (and adults) to explore and naturally use our scientific thought processes whilst they play. Benefits to sensory play include
- Improvement in both fine and gross motor skills
- Research shows that sensory play builds nerve connections in the brain’s pathways, which lead to the child’s ability to complete more complex learning tasks
- Language skills are improved from discussion of sensory play
- Assists in creative thinking
- Helps to calm children and regulate their inner thoughts helping with even anxiety and frustration
Our experience of Sensory Processing Disorder
All children benefit from sensory play but for some it’s even more important. My eldest son Chase suffered a birth injury and now lives with Cerebral Palsy. As he was growing up it became apparent he had some serious issues with certain sensations and sensory processes. For example Chase wasn’t even willing to open his hands to feel any type of texture on his palms – even the floor!
How Sensory Play Helped Us
This was a serious hindrance to his physical development which was already impaired from his cerebral palsy. These days however Chase will touch anything and everything. How did we get to this point? With lots and lots of sensory play and stimulation. The ongoing stimulation has help build new pathways in his brain to a point that you would never know he previously had any type of sensory processing disorder.
Zimpli Kids Review
Zimpli Kids make so many different products for sensory play, and all in a great range of colours too. Single use products as I’ve reviewed below are available from Amazon and selected Toys ‘R’ Us stores. Alternatively if you do a lot of sensory play or want to use in an educational setting then Zimpli Kids educational tubs are a great investment. The tubs are available in a massive range of messy sensory play and include a lot more of the product. The tubs can be purhcased from Educational Essentials. We tried out Gelli Play, Slime Play and Slime Baff. You can view the entire range at www.zimplikids.com
Our first product to encorporate into sensory play was Gelli Play. We got a rather awesome lava red colour. Gelli Play comes with two packets. One to create the Gelli and one to deactivate it when you finish play. To start with I simply added some of the powder into our bowl of water. Simply give it a swirl and leave for a few minutes for your Gelli to magically appear!
Chase was super excited to get his hands into this. He enjoyed grabbing, patting, squishing and at one point (accidentally) throwing the goo around! This was a fabulous activity for Chase as he has limited fine motor skills. He really enjoyed feeling the unusual sensation, as a result he was using his fingers and holding them in different ways to which he usually does.
His 4 year-old younger sister Brooke also loved dipping her hand in the bowl of goo. Again there was plenty of squishing, pulling, tapping, patting and grabbing. We talked about what we were doing with the goo to help develop language skills too.
The Gelli Play was a massive hit and I was particuarly impressed with how easy it was to clean up (after Chase accidentally threw it everywhere). Before empying Gelli play away you need to add the second bag to deactivate it. I added mine, swirled it around and then simply added water to the bowl and it simply turned into water and went down the drain – super easy and simple cleanup, that’s what I like!
Next up for my testers was a super cool ‘Goo Blue’ slime! to actiavte once again you simply poured the packet into a bowl of water, swirled and left for a few minutes
After a few minutes our bowl of slime looked ready for some hands to be added. Chase was fairly reluctant to plunge his hands into the slime so his younger sister stepped up to plate. After watching his younger sister laughing and having fun with the slime Chase decided he was ready to try it out. It was definitly a challenging texture for Chase to deal with as I could see him pucker up his lips (a non verbal cue of his when he dislikes the texture of something)
After a few minutes exposure though he started to relax and enjoy himself a little bit more. The slime was a bit harder with his fine motor skills to grab but for Brooke the slime was even more fun than the Gelli Play. Again as we played together we used lots of descriptive language and talked about what the slime felt like and whether it was cold, warm or hot to the touch. We had a game to see who could create the largest string of slime. The slime wasn’t as slimey as I was expecting. I suspect I had been a little conservative with the slime powder! You can change the thickness of the slime by simply adding more powder.
To dispose of the Slime Play simply required to be tipped away with running water. It ran away quickly and simple, again very easy to clean up.
The last product that we tried was the infamous Slime Baff! As the slime can be very slippery it wasn’t suitable for Chase to try out. He’s already very off balance when sitting and requires his hands to be in use for balance not slime grabbing. Brooke however was super keen to get into a bath of slime….
Brooke was in her element, squishing the slime and seeing how long of string could she make with it. She loved pretending to wash in the slime covering as much of her body as she could in it! Both Chase and their baby sister watched and laughed as Brooke got slime everywhere.
Brooke helped her brother join in by offering him some slime so he could get a feel for the bath version. (It felt the same to me but it was just nice that he could feel included in the activity). To remove the slime from the bath I added water first of all and then started to drain the bath. Once all the water had drained then I rinsed Brooke and the bath tub off. As mentioned earlier the slime does get very slippery so it’s important that your child stays sat down until all the slime has been removed!
Both my children loved playing with all the products, but I think for Brooke her best experince was the Slime Baff. Being able to bathe in slime is certainly a massive sensory experince! Chase tells me the blue slime was his favourite. As a parent I favoured the Gelli Play. For Chase it was such a great tool to help him with his fine motor skills. However all of the range I felt was great for our sensory play. The main selling point to me was how easy it was to clean and dispose off afterwards.
Giveaway – CLOSED
Edit 22nd February: Please note the giveaway below has now ended and the winner notified, Subscribe to my blog for more competitions coming soon!
Zimpli Kids have very kindly offered up some Slime Baff and Gelli Play for you to get your hands on. That’s not all though. The lucky winner of the giveaway will also get their hands on a Slime Blaster!
The Slime Blaster Gun is great for outdoors play and features the same safe, non toxic and environmentally friendly slime from Zimpli Kids!
Complete the Rafflecopter form below to enter
UK residents aged 18 and over only – Ends 21st Feb 2018 at 11:59pm.
1 winner only will receive 1 x Slime Baff, 1 x Gelli Play and 1 x Slime Blaster
Winner will be contacted by email by myself.
Prize will be dispatched directly from Zimpli Kids
Winner’s name will be displayed on the widget after the competition is closed.
For full T&Cs please see Rafflecopter widget.