Treasure basket play is used in many different ways. There are many who say if you deviate from the Elinor Goldschmied’s method then it is not a true Treasure Basket and shouldn’t be called one. I like to hold to the principles but feel that a lot can be achieved if you change things to fit your lifestyle.
If you’re new to Treasure basket play, I’ve written about Treasure basket play before as well as having a 7 day ecourse and a How to set up and use your own Treasure basket ebook and audio. If you are in the UK, I recommend Heritage Treasure Baskets as the go to place to buy your set.
Treasure baskets are a great play activity for sitting to approximately 12months olds. However towards that year mark they like to start throwing the objects, well mine certainly did. Parents also get concern that they are not just mouthing but chewing and being destructive with these objects and start putting them away.
What to do?
- Changing the type of items available may be a better choice.
- Perhaps try a theme instead of an eclectic mix.
- If they like biting: metal items
- If they like sound: musical items ( bought or homemade)
- If they like touch: fabrics, cardboard, sandpaper
- Adapt the treasure basket from being a sitting independent basket to a more collaborative basket, at times. To me it is a treasure basket because of all the treasure and goodies inside but to many others not.
After 12months my LO and still at 18m0nths has a fascination with containers. We collect empty food containers, for a time as well as collect containers when they are on sale. There is something about pushing stuff inside and pulling stuff out that he can’t get enough of. Having a collection of ever changing containers really keeps him entertained and totally engaged. He’s is totally learning while he is playing.
The difference is that this is deliberate play. I gathered the materials and let him have at it. Rather than he found them himself and got to play with them for a time before I took them from him. Both ways maybe playing but one way gives him more opportunities to exercise his curiosity and wear his scientists coat. The other way is a lot more stressful and emotionally charged.
The best thing about Treasure Baskets is how you can find so many delights in your own home without having to go and buy anything extra. You just have to put on your “Treasure Basket glasses” on. Meaning, looking at your house, cupboards, pantry, bathroom etc always with an eye to use.
Empty wipes box containers and tissue boxes. I can’t tell you how much fun we’ve had with them. Using new boxes is fine and transferring tissues and wipes to zipper bags also works.
You child maybe past the 12month stage but don’t give up on the Treasure Basket idea. There are so many things to be discovered in a basket…………..figures, stories, games and lots of imagination and discovery.