Introducing Gymboree Play & Music’s famous Rainbow Barrel!
This large, soft, tactile tunnel is used in our classes for pushing, rolling, rocking, crawling in, sitting in.
Sense of balance
- Our exciting Rainbow Barrel can be used to help develop your child’s balance from a very young age. We can place little babies on their tummy supporting them around their torsos. As they grow we can progress this to sitting with support, to eventually being able to do so independently. Balance is a key part of your little one’s development and they will need it in all areas of life, for example standing on one leg to dress themselves, or climbing up and down stairs with no railing.
- Core strength is the development of the torso muscles that stabilise, centre, and move the trunk of the body. Lack of core strength can contribute to things such as poor posture which in turn can affect gross motor and fine motor skills. We use our Rainbow Barrel to encourage little babies to do tummy time, then progress to sitting, then they use it as a giant walker, before finally pushing it using their core strength from one side of the room to to the other!
Sense of safety
- Our Rainbow Barrel is a very sturdy piece of equipment with a smooth vinyl finish. It can take up to two children on top plus little ones inside, and it doesn’t dip in the middle, it maintains its shape. This allows your little one to feel safe whether they are rocking on top, climbing inside, or rolling it with friends. Having a sense of safety whilst playing will allow your little one to build self confidence and new skills in each class they attend.
- The development of depth perception helps your child learn to gain confidence in their body. Our Rainbow Barrel is perfect for this as it can be used up against a slide allowing a child to drop something from a height, landing inside – we call this ‘problem solving’. You may find your child likes to drop things from a height in their highchair once we have explored the game at Gymboree Play & Music!
- Our Rainbow Barrel can be used to work on your child’s dynamic balance by using it as a giant walker. Your child will walk with their feet and push with their hands and you can stand behind to support them.
Sense of space
- Our Rainbow Barrel creates a fantastic tunnel that your little one can crawl though to develop their sense of space. We can also make it more challenging for our older ones by attaching a cloth tunnel to one side so that the space gets longer and then shorter. Another way of working on this is rolling a ball though or placing a child’s favourite toy inside to encourage them to take the challenge. It can be daunting for little ones so always start by just placing their head slightly inside and make sure they can see you from the other end, that will give them confidence.
- As little babies can only initially see in black and white our Rainbow Barrel is an excellent piece of equipment for them to use as they start to view life in colour. It’s also excellent for our little ones as they grow throughout the programme and can start to put the correct names to the colours.
- Hand and feet co-ordination is a staple part of your child’s development. We can use our Rainbow barrel to develop this with tummy time for little babies, placing a small toy in front so they can reach out and grab it, crawling inside once they get moving. Then using it as a walker to co ordinate the hands and feet at different times, and also tapping on the outside and stamping our feet to the beat of music.
- We often use our Rainbow Barrel in group activities such as collecting objects and placing them inside. Or working together to push it on its side. And for little ones working with a partner to roll it across the mats. Learning co-operative play from a young age is such a key skill and it will serve your little one well as they move into the next stages of their education.
Sense of achievement
- Learning to make it to the other side of a tunnel for a little baby can be a huge challenge so it may take weeks to achieve. But once they do make it through the sense of achievement will feel great. We always encourage a big celebration on the small wins to really build your little one’s confidence from a young age. Older ones will finally master jumping inside our Rainbow Barrel from the end of the Airlog. There are so many elements to this activity and once they complete it your child will feel a huge sense of achievement.