Staying in is the new going out – for the foreseeable future anyway. For us with children, it can be a little daunting thinking about how we can keep our little ones from climbing the walls and running rings around us while we are spending more time at home. The positive is that it’s more quality time with our loved ones; so how can we make this time more fun for those closest to us?
Aside from reading stories, having some screen time, completing puzzles and playing with their toys, here is a list of fun and easy indoor activities that you might not have thought of which are guaranteed to fill their days with lots of fun!
Make an obstacle course
Grab your bean bags, cushions, boxes, a row of chairs (for crawling under) laundry basket (for jumping in and out) and whatever else you can think of and set up an obstacle course in the comfort of your own home. Your little one will have so much fun jumping on everything and going up and down on the boxes and in and out of furniture!
Good old cardboard box
Sometimes it’s not the most expensive toys that create the most fun for our little ones. Ever noticed how your child will choose household objects like pots and pans over their actual toys? It’s the same kind of thing with a cardboard box. There are lots of things you can do with an empty cardboard box to create fun games and activities for your child but mini target golf will be a great place to start.
Turn a cardboard box upside down. Cut four opening holes next to each other on the side of the box and label each opening with a colour and number. Use child-safe mini golf balls and have endless fun of getting the balls into the holes. A great colour coordination game for you both to enjoy!
Hand print crafts
Using child-safe finger prints, try hand print crafts to bring lots of messy fun to your dat at home. Simply print their hands and/or foot prints onto some card or paper in different colours. If you have the space why not get really messy- you could put down paper and let them run around the paper leaving their colourful mark as they go along.
Paint your recycling
If you like the idea of getting messy after your hand prints, gathering your recycling boxes and use them to paint. Using different colours, painting onto the recycling boxes will be a chance for you to practice colour names with your toddler too.
Sort the toys out
Has sorting through your toddlers’ toys been a job you have been putting off for ages? Make it your mission to get it done. Being productive won’t only make you feel great but your toddler will love searching through their old and forgotten-about toys to rekindle with.
Pom Pom ice cubes
Gather small multi coloured pom poms freeze them into ice cubes. Pop them into a tray once frozen over and let your little one free each pom pom ice cube by melting with warm water.
Sensory bins are a great form of messy play for both babies and toddlers. An empty clear box will do and the choice is yours…
Dried rice/pasta, plastic cups or funnels.
If they’re a dinosaur lover you could give all their dinosaurs a bath with water and a drop of bubble bath. If not, this could be any plastic toy washing station.
Day time baths
Baths don’t just have to be before bedtime. A bath will be a great way to pass the time. For some extra bonding, you could even join your toddler and bath together. Gather all their favourite bath time toys and simply have fun splashing around!
Dancing, working out or simply jumping up and down and being silly are all good for the soul. Turn on the radio, or YouTube your favourite home work-out video, whatever it may be, just get moving! It will do both you and your little one wonders – especially if they love music too!
Smash mash play
Simply using a bag of instant mash potato, add food colouring and let your little one mash up the potato with kitchen utensils like a masher, or spatula.
Get busy at the fridge
While you are in the kitchen, fridge magnets are a great way to busy those little hands. If you already have a few, try some new ones, in animal, letter and shape form. This will be a chance for your child to familiarise themselves with the names of colours, shapes and animals and will be a good hand coordination task for them. Cooking to do? Your child will love the look and feel of their new magnets which will keep them occupied while you crack on!
Shaving foam fun
Kids will just love getting messy with shaving foam. Add some squirts to a bowl along with some food colouring and even glitter and let the messy fun begin… you can even add some of their toy figures.
Create a necklace
With a piece of string add pasta or beads and let your little one create their very own necklace or bracelet! This activity will keep their little hands occupied – great for developing fine motor skills!
Paint paper rolls
Keep your old toilet rolls and transform them into anything you like. Let them paint and stick on the rolls. You could try making them into lions, elephants or monkeys!
With some empty boxes you have fill them with a few small toys and wrap them up either with shiny or normal wrapping paper. Your child will love unwrapping each box and discovering what’s inside.
Enjoy… & remember, you’ve got this!