Bath toys are toys that are designed to be used in a bathtub. Children traditionally dislike taking baths and often the reason is because they dislike having to stop playing for the amount of time that it takes to get clean to their parents’ satisfaction. Baby bath toys are designed to counteract this resistance by allowing children to continue to play as they get clean.
Bath toys come in several different types or categories. Some children might prefer one type over another, but in the end parent often end up acquiring more than one type of bath toy. It is not uncommon to see families that have toys in their bathtub that fall into each of these categories.
The first category is toys for cleaning. These are toys that are designed to make actually cleaning the child less of a struggle. Popular options in this category include toys that are used to scoop or pour, enabling the parent to rinse their child. Some would also put patterned sponges and washcloths into this category, as they meet at the intersection of cleaning tools and bath toys.
Imaginative play toys are by far the largest category of bath toys. Rubber ducks are an example of this kind of toy. Any toy that is designed for the child to play with in an imaginative way belongs in this category.
These toys allow the child to continue their usual style of playing with toys beyond the playroom and into the bath. The primary function of these toys is to induce the child to get into the bathtub and stay there, but they also allow the child to expand their imaginative play into more aquatic areas than they might do normally.
Toys that are designed to help the child with fine motor or cause-and-effort learning are another category. Toys in this category are more deliberately interactive than the previous types of toys. A toy in this category is a toy that requires the child to do something to work it, like a toy which requires the child to put smaller items into a bigger item, or to pour water into a tube or a funnel. These toys serve a dual purpose of being both educational and a way to interest the child in bathtime.
Finally, there are art toys. These are toys that allow the child to create things while in the bath. Bath crayons are the most easily identifiable of these toys, but this category also includes things like sticky letters the child can stick on the wall of the bathtub and soap that looks like paint that the child can use to paint themselves. Any toy that stimulates the creative instinct in the baby belongs in this category.
The toys that work to allow a child to enjoy their bath varies from child to child. Trial and error and an understanding of the child’s particular interests is the best way to determine the best baby bath toys for that child. We also offer a fun enviroment with the toys with our bouncers in Newry and Mourne.