Exhausted from work but want to engage with your kids when you get home? Burnt out from entertaining kids all day but you have 2 more hours till bedtime? Odds are you have these miraculous yet ordinary things lying around the house! Don’t reach for that remote control, try these 4 toddler activities instead:
Hidden Household Toys:
1. FLASHLIGHTS Yep if you don’t have them, you should, emergency preparedness and all that. Shadow puppets on the wall? Dance party in a blanket fort? I Spy with flashlights as pointers? You will be amazed at how excited kids get about flashlights.
2. ICE Put it in a bucket and let them pour warm water over it, throw it in their bath and let them play, add some animal figurines and call it the north pole.
3. TWEEZERS Not just for pulling those stray gray hairs anymore (or is that just me?!) Challenge them to sort rice, dried beans, pebbles, anything you have on hand. Add small containers for the the sorting activity.
4. SOAPY WATER AND A SPONGE They love to imitate you, so why not let them do the dishes? A big bowl, some soap, a small sponge and some ‘dirty’ containers/dishes. Use their mild bath soap if you’re worried about getting it in their eyes.
Voila! You have given your toddlers the opportunity to explore the world around them in new and exciting ways and, just as importantly, made it through the final stretch before bedtime:)
Ready for some Stretch Goals? If you’re going for parent of the year and/or just planning ahead… here is how you can elevate these toddler activities to parenting level ‘Pro’:
- FLASHLIGHTS: Make some great silhouette puppets with popsicle sticks and black construction paper. Get the tutorial HERE. Or brush up on your finger puppet skills HERE.
- ICE: Dye the ice with a few drops of food coloring when you fill your ice cube trays. Or if you’re feeling ambitious and want a solid hour-long toddler activity freeze some animals into the ice for them to excavate, tutorial HERE.
- TWEEZERS: Stock up on those little fuzzy pom things from Amazon/Craft Store and have them sort into empty ice trays by color, or practice their colors with mega blocks like this.
- SOAPY WATER AND A SPONGE: Grab some of their favorite cars/trucks that have been outside and a spray bottle and call it a car wash, toddler activity in under 2 minutes and done!
Yours in Fun and Parenting,