I really do not like the be the bearer of bad news but it might be time to reconsider some of your bath toys — the cute rubber duckies, the whale that squirts out water from its blow hole. Unfortunately those bath toys are infamous for collecting, you guessed it, mold!
Toys that have a hole in them collect water inside, which eventually turns into a slimy, moldy film. Not only do they collect bacteria, but traditional bath toys can be quite expensive and are inherently very closed-ended. They do not spark creativity or imagination. Now, you could start cleaning out your bath toys with bleach to kill the bacteria, but I have an easier solution for you.
So, what’s the alternative?
Kitchen Utensils! Take a trip to your kitchen or head straight to the kitchen aisle at your local dollar store. There you will find things like funnels, strainers, measuring cups, measuring spoons and sponges. They are inexpensive and can easily be cleaned and dried. No water build up, no bacteria and you are also giving your child the opportunity to be imaginative, even in the tub! Kitchen utensils are open-ended so the possibilities for play are endless. A spatula is never just a spatula to a 2 year old. It may be a fairy wand, a microphone or even a guitar. Children are also able to practice their play schemas and a variety of different math and science concepts. They are able to dump and pour, explore density and volume, discover what sinks and what floats. “But my baby loves to squirt bath toys!” you say? Try a turkey baster instead! I promise your children will LOVE it.
* As always, kitchen utensils are not intended to be toys so adult supervision is required especially if your child still tends to put things in their mouths.