We’ve all been there. Your toddler wakes up from their nap, demands food and wants to play. However, it’s already five o’clock, and you just got back from work. But we can’t just ignore the little munchkins, can we? Here are some great, easy and fun activities for you and your toddler.
1. Take the kid outside!
A bit of breeze and some sunshine never hurt anybody, and can go a long way in turning their sad frown upside down! So this is the first step. You don’t need to travel far to get the grins going, either; your backyard is just fine. For some more outside ideas read here.
2. Play Caterpillar Hopscotch!
Like me, the chances are your little toddler has already read The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle and has no doubt fallen in love with it. With a little bit of preparation, and more importantly a box of sidewalk chalk, you can get a fun game going in no time, and here’s how to do it!
– Draw a large circle, no more than two or three feet in diameter. Make sure it has a face and some antennae!
– After you’ve used your incredible high-school level arts and craft skills, add twenty or so more circles to finish your jumbo-sized caterpillar body.
– Now it’s time to challenge your toddler to run from one end of the Hungry Caterpillar to the other. If you throw in a stopwatch, it can make it even more fun.
– Your toddler can try leaping from one circle to the other, bunny hopping, or leap-frogging.
– If you happen to have colored chalk, try to make each circle either Red, Blue, or Green in an attempt to encourage your little critter to follow the same color pattern, or even leap farther!
– As a bonus item, you can also have your toddler draw it with you!
3. Grow your own Mini Garden!
Introducing your little toddler to the natural wonders and beauties of nature can give them a great learning experience, and boost their sense of curiosity. Getting started is also quite easy. All you need is some fresh soil, some plant nutrients (some soils come with this already) and a pot. Throw your seeds into the pot with the soil, nutrients and some water, and leave it either outside or on a windowsill. Watch your flowers grow. As an extra fun thing, have your toddler check on it once a day, water it, and keep a ‘scientific’ journal!
4. Make some huge bubbles!
Come on, is there a single toddler in the history of existence who isn’t overly fond of enormous, soapy, watery bubbles? Most likely, the answer is no. Mix one cup of your everyday dish soap with a gallon of water. If you want, you can pick up some glycerin (from your local pharmacy) and add two or three teaspoons into that mix for some extra big bubbles. Of course, you could always just buy some bubble mix!
5. Create your own obstacle course!
When I was a kid, I absolutely loved this activity. For a quick and easy obstacle course with no complicated cleanup, get some chairs, buckets, Lego blocks, and hula-hoops and create a fun and easy obstacle course! This activity is great for building motor skills, and is a lot of fun.
More ideas? Check out: