Babies Walkers to 2 2s to 3s 3s to 4s

Overview and benefit

Babies explore the world around them using their sense of touch. Babies love the feel of something silky or the softness of a blanket. Young babies often put things into their mouth because their mouths are full of nerve endings and they a simply exploring the texture of things when they do this. Touching a variety of textures will fascinate a baby.

Training video

texture ribbons from MAD Academy on Vimeo.

Sensorytexture Ribbon-1 from MAD Academy on Vimeo.

Equipment required

  • long lengths of different textured ribbon and material
  • a range of containers for the ribbons to go in to be given to each parent


One to two weeks

How it works

Babies are given a box filled with a long lengths of different textured ribbons/material which they can enjoy pulling out and exploring. Try:

  • Silky ribbons
  • Net ribbons
  • Lengths of lace
  • Feather boa
  • Lengths of cord
  • Lengths of beaded Christmas tree garlands/strings
  • Lengths of fabric trimming
  • Strips of sequin material
  • Length of ribbon with buttons firmly sewed along it
  • Small link chain
  • Length of wide elastic
  • Length of rough string or rope
  • String of bunting
  • Wide rough string
  • Thin woollen scarves
  • Present wrapping ribbon
  • Shoe laces
  • Flag bunting

Curl up the ribbons into a small container (e.g a cocoa pot) make a hole in the lid and poke the end out. Give each one to a child and encourage them to pull out the length, exploring each texture as they go.

What to do in the class

You will need to give each parent and child a container full of lots of different. Get the parents to show the baby the end of a ribbon and encourage them to pull it if they are old enough to achieve this. Explore each texture that is exposed together, discussing it with your baby for instance, is it sort, silky, rough, knobbly etc.

Adaptations for older/younger children

This activity is designed for the baby group

What to do in a nursery setting

Encourage the staff to work one to one with the babies.


If you were feeling crafty, you could connect all the lengths together. Then the children could pull it out of the container without a break, a bit like a magic trick! Alternatively you could make a few large circular ropes which could be passed around a small group in a circle, with babies on mum’s lap and the mums revolving the ribbon ring around the circle.