WITH school closed and the recommendation for non-essential workers to stay at home, it means that many parents will be stuck inside with their toddlers 24/7, everyday. And even with planned activities, these pre-schoolers will still have plenty of energy.
While it might be tempting to reward them with screen time to keep your otherwise curious toddler out of trouble, we have shared a list of fun alternatives that will help you to catch up on bonding and keep their minds... and yours, engaged.
Sip, and paint
Gather the art supplies that you have and ask your children to help you to select a picture that you can use for painting. If you don't have a canvas, use regular blank paper and challenge yourselves to creating a replica of the selected picture. You may also assist the children with painting. To add some spunk to your sip and paint, bring out the sparkling wine or just regular juice, along with crackers cheese and/or other snacks.
A spa day
Parents often skip on spa days, but now that you are home it's the perfect opportunity to catch up. Whether you are a girl or boy-mom or a mixture of the two, you could all benefit from this. For example, you can do facials using manufactured scrubs and face masks or a mixture of natural supplies like aloe vera, turmeric and coconut oil. Of course you can also do a manicure and pedicure and for the children you can even add a little protective clear polish over their nails.
Arts and crafts
Some parents are naturally artistic, and other parents may have to enlist YouTube for assistance. The challenge is to find a recycling project and create simple craft items like bracelets and necklaces.
Stories with puppets
Create characters for a story with paper bags. For example, a boy, a dog, a fireman, a policeman, a mother, etc. When you create the puppets, you will task your toddler to help you to write a story incorporating each person that you created in the village. It will help to develop their comprehension skills as well as explore their imagination.
Enjoy classic games
Your toddler might not even know how much fun Simon Says and 123 Red Light can be. This is the perfect opportunity to resuscitate this tradition. Engage them in a few of these classic games. If you have enough space you may even be able to teach them a thing or two about hopscotch. This will be a perfect opportunity for you to let down your hair and enjoy memories of your childhood.
Camp out indoors
Bring out the sleeping bags, put away the gadgets, get the marshmallows, a board game or two, a pretend fire, pitch a tent, turn off the overhead lights and switch on the small night light and share stories while enjoying the night sounds from the outdoors.
A dance off
Since a lot of time will be spent indoors, it means that your toddler will engage in less physical activity. A dance off is the perfect way to burn some energy. Find good music and spend at least 30 minutes a few times a week with your toddler, getting some work out in. To pique their interest, you can even create a playlist of their favourite songs so they can listen while they dancercise.
Colour sorting activity
Use their favourite coloured cereal, a bag with confetti or coloured paper that you have torn up and put them in a bag or box. On clean sheets of paper, use coloured crayons or markers to make big circles. The task is for children to pick the coloured object from the bag or box, look which coloured circle it matches, and place it inside. Continue to sort the colours until the bag or box is empty.
Read to your child
Reading is fun and you want to use every opportunity to encourage it. It is the single most important way to develop your child's knowledge base. During reading time you will do a number of things; for example, giving the child the book to look at, to touch, and to even pretend to read. When it's time to read to the child, make sure that you read aloud and in an engaging voice. Give each character a different voice and if you can, do some actions and encourage your child to copy them.