(fyi, I did not get paid for or compensated in any way for the following post.)
Before becoming a parent, I’d heard of water beds, but not water tables. Turns out this is a completely unnecessary yet wonderful “invention” for those of us with toddlers who don’t have pools and are trying to find ways to cool down at home without relying on that extremely popular invention called… television.
Our 19 month old can spend hours, literally hours, scooping water with a simple cup and pouring it: back into the water table…into another cup…onto his feet…on our feet…on the ground…on the nearby mulch, on a pile of rocks he has collected, into the flower pot, etc, etc, etc. The possibilities are endless and each new iteration is accompanied by a squeal of delight followed by all kinds of business-like concentration as he repeats the same action to slightly different effect 150 times.
It’s not that water tables are the ultimate toy, it’s that water is. And this thing puts it exactly at his height. Besides, while playing with this, he is cooling us down, he is cooling himself down, the slate floor of our porch is getting clean, the flowers are getting watered, and well, basically everybody is happy. In fact, watching him play with this is somewhat meditative. It’s almost like being at the beach except without getting stuck in traffic or getting sand in every orifice.
My husband calls this (and all the corollary research our son does in the bath tub) hydro-dynamics. Indeed, this seems like a good foundation for becoming an oceanographer or hydrologist. Maybe he’ll be an engineer with a specialization in the science of…fountains or…man-made water falls…or water parks (ooh, I hope he can get us some free tickets). But once again, I’m getting ahead of myself.
The point is that I recommend this. And I’m not getting paid to say so. When this water table plays out, we plan to fill it with sand, since we don’t have a sand box. I am hoping he still enjoys this to some degree next summer.
Do you have one of these? Do you want ours when we’re done with it? Or are you one of those sensible types who has every right to tell me that the exact same amount of joy can be extracted from a simple bucket? Feel free to leave a comment below…