Toddler Rice Bin Pin Test (Pin Test: Reviewing Pins from Pinterest)
If you have a toddler, you’ve probably experienced the challenge of trying to cook dinner with an active toddler underfoot. In our house, this seems to be the time when our sweet sixteen month old G decides she no longer wants to play with any of her toys and must be held, or at least allowed to get into everything that is off limits. When G was younger, I would pop her in a baby carrier and wear her while I prepped as much as I could, though not while using the stove. At 20+ weeks pregnant, that’s not a comfortable option anymore. When Gary took over the daily task of cooking dinner it seemed like the problem was solved once and for all. That is, until we started preparing for him to leave for a two week trip.
With Gary out of town, I knew I needed to find something to keep G busy while I prepped dinner and got other chores done without constantly resorting to turning on a video. Pinterest, as always, was a huge help in generating ideas. I found plenty of toddler activities, and decided to start with one that required little prep on my part.
Busytoddler.com’s post on how to make a toddler rice bin seemed like the perfect starting point. It was promoted as the easiest toddler activity ever, and I had everything needed to set it up already on hand. So, on Gary’s first day out of town, I pulled out a large bin, some rice, and scoops, and set up our very own rice bin.
Pass or Fail?
So, what were the results when testing this Pinterest idea? The first time I set this activity up for G, she played for thirty minutes straight. If you have a toddler, you know that is a huge success. This activity certainly passed the Pin Test!
What I learned while testing this idea:
- Be ready to redirect constantly the first day. G tried to walk away from the bin with a scoop full of rice several times. Each time I firmly told her “Keep the rice in the bin.” as I walked her back to the bin. By the end of play time, a firm look was enough. The next time we set the bin up, I only had to redirect once or twice.
- Setting the bin up off of the floor, worked best for us. G couldn’t comfortably reach over the edge of the bin that we used when it was on the floor, yet while standing she had to hunch over to reach the rice. I tried placing it on her play table, but found that it was too high. Fortunately, we had an empty cardboard box from our last Costco trip that was the perfect height. I placed a piece of non slip cabinet liner on the box to help hold the bin in place and we were in business!
- The novelty wears off if overused. Just like with any activity, if it’s brought out everyday it no longer seems as special. The fourth time I set the rice table up, G played for about five minutes before moving on. Now, I only set it up once a week, which seems to keep her more interested.
- Placing towels under the bin made for an easy clean up. When G is done, I remove the bin and box, then pick up the towels and shake any spilled rice into the bin.
What tips do you have for keeping your toddler entertained?