Sunday, May 6, 2007

Toddler Activities...keep them busy!

Things to do with Toddlers
Finger painting
Playing with play dough
Biscuit baking
Icing biscuits
Cooking of any kind
Colour sorting with Lego
Dancing and Singing to music
Colouring and drawing of any kind
Blowing bubbles
Hide and Seek
Playing in the Sand box
Cutting and Tearing
Bag in a Basket
Playing Ball
Instrument playing
Playing "Somebody's coming" and hiding
Feeding the birds
Playing house
Collecting things
Building blocks
Dressing up
Peek a Boo
Tea Parties
Playing with water
Sleeping animal
Row your boat
Throwing up in the air
Chasing around the house
Playing dolls
Hungry frogs
Making cities
Playing animals
Picking flowers
Playing babies
Tearing, scrunching, cutting paper
Playing in the garden
Playing with pots and pans
Playing shops
Pretending to talk on the telephone
Talk about the day before going to bed, try get thing in sequence, talk about tomorrow and what you plan to do.
Talk about things while you do them, explain what you are doing and why. i.e. "lets put on your shoes, left foot first, now the other leg. This foot is your right foot, Which hand is your right hand?" and on and on.
Play "What If" - What if the sky was green and the grass and trees were blue? What if we all walked backwards? ...
Feeling - put some things in a box with tissue paper or crepe paper and try and feel what they are.
have a picnic in the lounge, or in the garden.
collect and listen to well constructed Christian music for toddlers.
give name to all the cuddly toys (write the names down somewhere so you don't forget years later)
Throw bean bags with different hands crossing mid line of their bodies.
Picking up objects with a clothes peg.

Things to do with slightly older children.
Just be with your kids, talk to them, relate to them. Remember you can't make quality time it just happens if you spend long enough with them.
Play board games together as a family.
Build up a collection of jokes and tell them to one another.
Make up stories and tell them to one another, (I wish I had tapes some of the ones we told each other)
Making pizzas
Picking fruit and making jam.
Ceramic painting - nice for the whole family
Making a go-cart
Build a tree house
Teaching the children to lay the table - "chores"
Teach Cross-stitch to young girls.
Invest in a swing ball and play together in the garden.
Volley ball
Get old toys and things and wrap them up in newspaper and play pass the parcel to the sound of music, kids love getting there old things back.
Talk about money and how it works. Why is it important?
See a show, first buy the video (eg. Joseph and his technicolour dreamcoat), then see the live show, then by the music CD. The value of your investment is repeated many times.
Play computer games with your kids, ask them to show you how.
Let them make up a story and you write it down for them, make your own simple book.
Play marbles.
Write your own newspapers.
Who, when, where homemade cards (eg. who - the postman, when - on Friday, where - on the corner and then make up a sentence). As different cards are put together some funny stories emerge.
The shopping game - eg. first person starts, I went to the shop and bought an apple, seconds person repeats first and adds their item, continue adding and see how many you can get to without faulting.
Art & Craft - draw on tissue paper with ear bud dipped in bleach; draw with candle or wax crayon, then wash over with diluted food colouring to make picture; hold crayon under burning flame and then dot melted wax around paper to make a picture; colour all over white sheet of paper with different coloured wax crayons then go over with black crayon, then make picture drawing with a toothpick; make small pieces of coloured paper and make a picture from it eg. blue pieces for sky; paint picture on one side and fold over to mirror image eg. butterflies; plastic cold drink bottle, cut out shapes from that and dip earbuds into glass paint and decorate plastic shapes and make fridge magnets; ink drawing with straws; put paint, water and dishwashing liquid into a round yogurt tub and then blow the paint with straws and make bubble pictures.
Chargoal drawing.
Teach life skills eg. make a circle of friends by cutting strips of paper and finding good qualities about others to write on strips, link the strips together and make a chain; make rectangles out of cardboard, write affirmations on each brick and build together to make a friendship wall; talk about the "b's" eg. be helpful, be kind, be loving, be caring etc.
Things to do with your Teens
Find some activity that will allow you to have at least 30 minutes each week to spend with each of your teens, to talk and chat, go for a walk.
My neighbour goes surfing a couple of times a week with his teenage son at about 5 am. That give him a 30 minute car journey each way to the beach and probably an hour or more surf time.