Nigel’s Baby Club Diaries – Playing with a Saucepan

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The Baby Club – Episode 12

Playing with a Saucepan – Parenting Advice

In each episode of The Baby Club we have a ‘What’s in the bag?’ section, and in episode 12 we were playing with a saucepan. When we were playing with them, you may not have been aware of how much thought had gone into how and why we used them. Also you might be interested to know how these items have inspired other parts of that specific episode. For that reason and to provide tips for new parents and more seasoned ones too, I have written Nigel’s Baby Club Diaries. Hopefully they will help you see:-

  • How important your interactions with very young children are. 
  • Why they can help with learning.
  • Ideas for verbal interactions you can have with your baby.
  • That you are not alone in your thoughts.
  • That dad’s shouldn’t be embarrassed about getting involved too.

The information you will find here draws on Peeple’s Learning Together Programme. Peeple and the Foundation Years Trust charities were consultants on The Baby Club. As with anything regarding your baby, if you have any queries you should speak to your health visitor. They will be able to provide help and support with questions you may have.

Things you can do with a saucepan?

During episode 12 we were playing with saucepans. You may have seen us wearing them like hats, playing peek-a-boo, and even banging the lids together. All of these help develop different aspects of your baby’s basic skills, and I will discuss these in a moment. But first I would like to give you a couple more ideas and things to look out for when you are trying this at home. These ideas are good as your baby gets older and you want to develop more complex skills.

  • You can use your saucepan as a drum, maybe tapping it with a wooden spoon. 
  • You could play a game of ‘Where has it gone?’. Hide things underneath an upturned saucepan in an obvious manner while encouraging your baby to look for it. This is a great way to learn that things can be hidden inside or underneath something, and can reappear later.
  • If you are playing with different types of saucepan, encourage your child to find specific ones. This is a great opportunity to develop language. Simple phrases such as ‘Can you see the big saucepan?’, ‘Look at the red saucepan’, are a good place to start. Don’t worry if your baby isn’t sure, just point to it yourself: ‘Here it is – here’s the big saucepan!’. It will still help with the learning process. And the more you repeat things like this the more your baby will get involved and understand. Plus don’t forget to give lots of smiles and encouragment too.

What areas does this activity help with?

Rhythm Coordination

Turning your saucepan into a drum is a great way to help your baby get involved with music. It will teach your baby that their actions can cause sounds. This can be fascinating for a young child and moving to create these sounds will increase their coordination and muscle tone.

Sensory Development

Learning that things can disappear and reappear or be underneath something is a stage of development that babies don’t reach until they’re about four to seven months old.  It can take a little while to grasp but hiding things underneath your saucepan is a great way to demonstrate this. Once understood it will add a whole new dimension to your play time together.

Language Extension

Most activities are a good opportunity to develop language and understanding. The ones described here are good for learning phrases like ‘Where has it gone?’ or ‘Look at the BIG saucepan’. The more repetition, encouragement and smiles that you use, the more your baby will get involved and develop.

Icons made by Freepik from is licensed by CC 3.0 BY

Songs and Nursery Rhymes

Songs and nursery rhymes are a huge part of The Baby Club and a fun way for babies and young children to learn. You’ll be surprised how well babies remember information that is delivered in a song. When we were playing with saucepans we sang ‘Five Fat Sausages’. But there are many nursery rhymes and songs that involve cooking and food. ‘Tuppenny Rice’ and ‘Little Miss Muffet’ are both good alternatives.

What other objects can I use?

Want to learn more?

If you have found this helpful and want to find out more about supporting your child’s learning, please check out Peeple’s Facebook page. If you’re a practitioner, you can find out about the Peep Learning Together Programme and training on the Peeple website, or email Charlotte on

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