Tag Archive | playtime

Indoor Activity Ideas for a Preschooler

Whether the weather is uninviting, someone feels out of sorts, or it’s an inside play day, mommies sometimes need a “go-to” for an activity. I’m creating a jar of activity sticks, and they’ll be simple: craft sticks with a different activity handwritten on each stick.

Here is my list, a work in progress, that is primarily geared towards preschoolers. What would you add to it?

Activity Sticks Ideas:

  • ABC Mouse (online subscription)
  • Bake together
  • Bath time / Water play
  • Bean bag toss
  • Beans box
  • Blocks
  • Build a fort
  • Candy Land
  • Color Wonder
  • Connect Four
  • Crayons
  • Dance
  • Dolls
  • Dominoes
  • Hopping
  • Hopscotch (on porch or painter’s tape on the kitchen floor)
  • I Spy – books, pictures, in the house
  • Jumping jacks
  • Letter craft
  • Memory game
  • Movie and popcorn
  • Musical instruments bag
  • Nursery rhymes
  • Ornaments
  • Painting, watercolors
  • Paper hats
  • Piano time
  • Picnic inside
  • Play store (cash register, make play money)
  • Play-doh
  • Puppets, paper bag
  • Puzzles
  • Read stories
  • Sing silly songs
  • Stickers
  • Sun catchers
  • Tape, double-stick (art collage, etc)
  • Tape, masking
  • “Tinker” box (random collection of stuff)
  • Treasure hunt
  • You Tube (songs, nursery rhymes, animals)

I have a  Pinterest board with many indoor activities. Please share what activities your little ones enjoy! 🙂

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Two Great Toys

Toys. We love them, and we hate them.  (Stepping on a race car or lego is not a fun time!)

There are so many choices, and advertisers make lots of money trying to convince us (and our children) that their toys are the best.  Well, I have a couple of tried-and-true recommendations for you that are suitable for babies through preschoolers.  They are open-ended, easily cleaned, and you may want to buy more than one of each.

Drum roll, please . . .

1-  Soft blocks

B. One Two Squeeze Blocks

 

 

 

 

 

 

2- Nesting plastic cups (These aren’t the exact ones we own, since I found ours at Dollar General for about $5.00)

 

 

 

 

Yes, I’m serious.  It’s that easy.  The blocks can be stacked, rolled, put in bowls, dumped out, squished a bit, and they don’t hurt nearly as much as wooden blocks.  The plastic cups can be stacked or nested, used in the bath, outside, and for other imaginative play.

We have had both toys for a while now, and our 2.5 year old plays with them often.  They may be my go-to baby gift and recommendation from now on. 🙂

Homemade Play Dough

Roll it. Shape it. Cut it. Bend it. Eat it (hopefully not). There are so many fun things to do with play dough. It’s easy to make, too! Go ahead and whip some up. It takes about 10 minutes plus cooling time. (Add the food coloring at the beginning, though, unless you want your dough to look like bleu cheese.)

web_play dough 2Homemade Play Dough:
1C flour
1/3 C salt (it’s drying, so maybe a little more or less)
2T cream of tartar
1C water
2T oil
food coloring if desired

Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and cook over low to medium heat, stirring constantly, until it’s the right consistency.
Spread it out on wax paper to cool.
Store it in an airtight container, and it should last for a while.

What can you do with a box?

web_tunnel

If you’re my hubby, you make a tunnel for our toddler. Once we showed him how to use it, he’s enjoyed it. The window on the side is an added bonus. And if your truck will move itself, you can send it through the tunnel on its own with your mommy waiting to send it back.
Good times!


web_tunnel enter web_tunnel exit

Such a simple toy

It’s often the simple things that make the best toys. For example, the box that housed the new toy is often more popular than the toy itself.
My 17 month old enjoys taking things apart, stacking, and opening and closing drawers. The other evening I needed something different to occupy him in his high chair for a bit.  So I decided to create something simple: a washed formula can and lids from baby food jars. I cut a hole in the top of the lid that was plenty wide and gave him the container and lids. He promptly removed the lid to the can and enjoyed putting the small lids in the container, pulling them out, and starting over.

It gave me 20 wonderful minutes to work on dinner and wash some dishes. 🙂