Introducing the Gymboree Play & Music Cushion!
This soft crash mat is used in Levels 1-7 and our pre-school classes for walking, standing, jumping, lying, rolling, and sliding.
- We use our Cushion for little ones from birth to 5 years. It has a lot of resistance and we describe it as trying to walk or crawl through mud! Body control starts from little ones using it for tummy time and lifting up of their heads, to forward rolls and big jumps!
- The Cushion really encourages the trust between grown-up and child. The little one sits on the edge whilst the grown-up encourages them to reach out and fall into their arms. Similarly, a 5 year old is about to master a star jump and their grown-up is on the side cheering them on!
Lower limb strength
- We use the crash mat in the early stages for tummy time and crawling, then start to encourage little ones to walk across. Bouncing is a tricky skill and unlike a trampoline our crash mat doesn’t actually have much bounce so really encourages the muscles to build up and your little ones to do the work!
Sense of balance
- As our Cushion isn’t a solid surface to make your way across, so whether it be crawling, walking or running, your little one will have to engage their tummy muscles and sense of co-ordination in order to make it to the other side.
Sense of achievement
- We use our crash mat to create activities of repetition such as jumping from a height or successfully completing a jump in the centre of it. We will repeat these week on week so that your little one can continue to improve, and once they complete the task, feel that sense of achievement. Celebrating this with them will build their confidence.
Upper body strength
- Our Cushion is used to develop upper body strength by crawling across it. We encourage crawling in all stages of pre-school development as it continues to build that upper body strength which they will need for other activities such as monkey bars and climbing and also in their day to day life when getting dressed, and in and out of bed.
- In our younger classes we use this for our sensory stations. This allows an opportunity for not only the babies to interact, but also the parents. This provides another key part of classes, we want you to make friends too! We also use the crash mat for imagination group play, for example a sand pit or giant muddy puddle.
Sense of space
- Having a sense of space is vital for your little one’s development, one way we will do this by using hoops on the crash mat and asking them to stay in their own space.
- Our crash mat has so many uses, and whether they’re floating on it as a boat, or being a bear climbing over it as a mountain, or crawling across it, each time they achieve one of these steps their confidence will grow and grow.
- Having good body co-ordination is a vital skill to learn as it will mean they will be less likely to fall and injure themselves. One way we use our crash mat for this by learning to balance on one leg.
- The feel of our crash mat is unlike any of our other pieces of equipment, it’s dense and squidgy with a vinyl finish. Tactile experience is vital for little one’s development as they use their senses to explore and try and make sense of the world around them.