Use a water table and bag of crystals from a mining kit to work on fine motor skills, tactile sensory play, various grasps, and other skills, all while exploring the beauty of gems and crystals.
A special Grandma gave the kiddos a bag of gems one day when we were out at a local orchard. They had a sluice where the kids can sift the dirt through screens and end up with a bag of gems. When we were at the orchard, the time was getting dangerously near naptime.
So we took our bag of gems to-go!
We added some water to both sides of our water table and dumped the whole bag of dirt and crystals into one side.
Big Sister and Little Guy got right into the dirty fun not long after Baby Girl went down for her nap (they could hardly wait!)
We used our sandbox sifter toy to scoop up dirt and sift the crystals out. We used the clean water on one side of the water table to rinse the crystals.
This was so much fun! We all played all afternoon: inspecting crystals, scooping water, sifting dirt, and examining little bits of rock! We ended up leaving the dirty/rocky water in the water table and played again after Baby Girl woke up from her nap. The rocks had settled and it was fun to sift the bigger rocks out from the water.
Have you ever “mined” for gems? Next time, be sure to take your crystals home “to-go” for lots of messy sensory play!