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21 Highchair Activities for Toddlers and Tabbies

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The highchair can be a great place for busy toddlers and tabbies to focus on an activity. I’ve asked some of my favourite bloggers from around the globe to contribute to this post on their favourite highchair activities for toddlers, so please read on for some fantastic ideas…

This post has a combination of ideas from my own page and those of my favourite bloggers. Whenever a guest blogger has made a contribution, their name is stated in bold along with a link to their website or social media pages. There you will find more information about recommended age and any equipment you might need. However the general recommended age is 12 months +

Please be aware that with any DIY activity, you need to keep your child under close supervision, especially if the activity involves small parts.


1. Orange Peel

This is such an awesome fine motor activity from Hello Wonderful – you can read details in full about this taby activity here and also follow the lovely Agnes over on Instagram for heaps of incredible and creative ideas.


2. Egg Carton Poke

This idea is one shared by Michelle from 7 Days of Play over on Instagram. She used an old egg carton (with holes poked into each compartment) along with some paper straws to keep her 11 month old entertained.


3. Cup and Straw Activity

Never throw out the recycling, is my advice! This is such a clever reuse of plastics from Hello Wonderful. You can read more about the activity here.


4. Tyre Tracks

Mr 15 months is already showing signs of being just as car obsessed as my eldest – so it’s lucky we kept the collection! For this yellow themed sensory activity, I put a dusting of polenta on the highchair for E to make tracks with. You can always put a tray or drop cloth underneath for easy clean up, although this time E didn’t really make a mess – miracles can happen!


5. Ribbon Pull

This activity from Creative Play Ideas is brilliant for little ones. Jenni did this with her son when he was aged 6 months old, but you could also make it work for the older age group . You can read more about it over on Jenni’s Instagram Page.


6. Cheerio Push

We’ve done a few posting style activities with E involving craft sticks. This idea came into fruition after thinking up safe small objects that I could use to help Mr 15 months develop his pincer grip – this cheerio push worked like a dream!


7. Animal Rescue

You might notice that we are rather fond of rescuing animals! This is about as simple as it gets – simply place some chunky animal figurines in a muffin pan and put washi tape over the top.


8. Rubber Band Guitar

Secure rubber bands onto a loaf tin and you have yourself a DIY guitar that has been made in less than a minute. This has been so popular with my youngest two that we had to start learning how to take turns!


9. Animal Escape

Another day, another animal escape! This is what prompted us to make the above rubber band guitar too. Make it easier by using fewer elastic bands and harder with more. Simple!


10. Chenille Stick Twist

I first made this activity for E whilst on holiday – you can read more about this in Baby Play on Holiday.


11. Tape Rip

A simplified version of the animal rescue. We pretty much always have a roll of washi tape around – its so handy for taby play!


12. Fine Motor Fun

This activity is from Toddler Activities at Home over on Instagram. It sounds like such a winner as it kept Alison’s little girl occupied for a good 30 minutes! You can find more information about Alison’s wonderful new toy shop, Little Toy Tribe, by clicking here.


13. Shape Sorter

This shape sorter idea comes from Little Button Diaries. With younger babies and tabies, keep the shapes in place for little ones to pull out, overtime they will be able to sort the shapes too! You can read more about the post here.


14. Yogurt Paint

Good old messy fun that is confined to the highchair! You can read more about yogurt paint here.


15. Squish Bag Painting

A less messy version of the yogurt painting above, but with non-toxic paints. You can use this technique to create baby’s very first piece of lasting artwork. This is an activity that can be done as a tummy time activity (around 4 months) and right in to toddler-hood for those days when you need a contained mess! You can read more about them here.


16. Sensory Bags

Myriam from Mother Could is queen of the sensory bags. Head on over to her Instagram feed for heaps of ideas – for tabies – like this simple set up using vegetable oil and food colouring. Seal down the edges with masking tape and use extra durable bags to prevent the contents from spilling.


17. Pouch Pat

The taby stage can be a pretty tricky one – tabies are curious about everything but many resources are still unsafe when they are at an age when they put everything in their mouths! One solution is to put smaller items within a sealed pouch (as shown here) which can then be taped to the highchair. You can do this activity from around 6 months + when baby can sit for longer periods unaided.


18. Experimenting with Colours

The highchair makes the ideal place for little ones to start exploring crayons and other materials. There is no risk of them running around with a pencil if they are contained to the chair! Here we used Little Brian paint sticks but chunky wax crayons or markers make a great first choice. Just be sure to only choose products that are non-toxic AND keep a careful watch to ensure that your little ones doesn’t put any items in their mouth. Remove lids to paint sticks and pens first, then keep them way out of reach.


19. Posting Lids

No post about highchair activities for toddlers would be complete without the classic posting lids! Glue a baby wipe lid on top of a small cardboard box, then cut a whole inside. Hand baby some jar lids, then you’re good to go! This activity can be done from a much younger age, Mr E was around 10 months old in this photo.


20. Ribbon Pull – part 2!

This is really similar to Jenni’s ribbon pull, but designed for slightly older babies and tabbies. We started this activity with E when he was around 10 months old – the box is missing one side so baby can pull the ribbon from both ends.


21. Play Dough Splat!

Roll balls of play dough into balls for your taby to squish. I have plenty of play dough recipes on the website, but for those who still put EVERYTHING in their mouths, try this no-added salt version.


Do you like what you see?

Please pin this image so you can reference the activities at a later date. You can also follow me on Pinterest here. I upload ideas daily and share activities from across the community too!

Sian Thomas

Sian Thomas

Sian is a trained teacher mama to three awesome children and wife to Greg. As a family of expats, they travel the world every couple of years for new adventures. Right now, they live in Vienna, Austria.

One thing Sian is super passionate about? Helping mums worldwide navigate the early years of parenthood.

You can join her on her brand new venture, This Playful Home, by visiting www.thisplayfulhome.com or clicking the email sign up button below!

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