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Busy boards provide endless sensory stimulation and entertainment for both babies and toddlers. Aimed at promoting the development of sensory and fine motor skills, busy boards are suitable for babies from 6 months through to preschool.

By allowing babies and toddlers to explore regular household items, they become familiarised with them, all while creating connections to master their fine motor skills. The development of fine motor skills is critical for daily tasks such as getting dressed, using cutlery, and brushing teeth. Without fine motor skills, completing daily tasks could become difficult and could delay progress.

So, whether you’ve purchased one or chosen to create your own, a busy board is a great way to promote learning with play, be proactive in your child’s development, and promote additional skills such as counting, recognition, hand-eye coordination, and problem solving.

Make Your Own Busy Board

If you’ve chosen to create a busy board, it’s important to be mindful of any loose parts that could become choking hazards, and any possibly toxic materials used during assembly.
To stick onto a clean wooden or plastic piece of board, accumulate all the things that you think little hands would find interesting.

Be it fabric such as denim and velcro, to mirrors, bells, wheels, and whistles, anything and everything that’s safe and keeps your little one engaged can be added to the busy board.

As their skills develop you can create new ones to suit their interests. They also make for great distractions on long car journeys and flights, so keep this is mind when deciding on size and items.

Other ways to promote the development of fine motor skills through sensory learning and play include:

Slime: Make your own or purchase some ready-made slime. Check out our slime recipes – they’re perfect for messy play!

Playdough: A little less messy but still great fun for kids and adults. Get creative and get baking, use cookie cutters to create different shapes.

Musical Toys: Make your own instruments using household items like pots and rice. Anything that makes noise will be new and exciting.

Cooking: Once they’re a little older, experiment with tastes and textures. Check out our recipes, the Chinese Greens Stir-Fry is perfect for this. It’s full of aromatics and bound to get those noses going.

Explore: Your surroundings will have a significant impact on what your child feels comfortable engaging with so, visit gardens, smell flowers, pick up rocks, play in the sand, pat the cat – Get them exploring their world.


  • Melissa MacDonald

    Zipboom, was created out a passion for teaching and the need to engage and immerse children in activities that are educational, non-tech based and fun. Early Childhood teacher and mother of two, Melissa, established a business based on her love of family and travel. Find her educational games, journal (with optional subscriptions) and a nifty travel tote/table rest on her website. What a fabulous way to keep your child entertained and engaged on your next trip in the car, coffee shop, while camping or, in the not too distant future, an aeroplane.