Whether you’re working from home, or home is your work, sometimes you just need a couple of minutes to yourself. While your young child may not usually be willing to play nicely in the next room so you can have a moment of peace, you may be able to convince them by providing some fun quiet activities that don’t require you to play along side of them.
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- Tape Roads. Using road tape, painter’s tape or masking tape, create some winding roads (Or Letters, Shapes, and Numbers) for your little one to drive their cars over! Even if they just pull up the tape, they’re still occupied, and cleaning up!
- Magnets. While it’s great to have magnet dolls, magnet tiles, or magnet puzzles, just plain fridge magnets on a cookie sheet work well, too. If you have expendable magnets, you can print pictures from the web and attach magnets to them so your child can make fun story scenes with them!
- Paint With Water. This is great for “messy” expression that’s really just water play!
- Recyclable Building. Let your kid(s) go nuts with the boxes and plastic containers in your recycling bin! This is awesome because the material is usually a much larger scale than usual, AND when they’re done, everything just goes in the recycling bin.
- Car/Toy Wash. Bonus for being hygienic, give your little one some soapy water, and some of their toys. I use this for my Pre K class, and they LOVE it. Using our water table, we wash our toys with toothbrushes, sponges, or silicon makeup pads, just put down a towel, and make sure they have enough space. This is great for outside!
- Look and Find books. Remember to go over how to use them with your kid BEFORE you expect them to play with it on their own! But these kind have the picture of what they’re looking for, so you don’t have to read it to them.
- Geo Board. The kids in my class LOVE using Geo Boards to make pictures and patterns.
- Noodle/Cereal Threading. Using yarn or pipe cleaners, your kids will have tons of fun threading noodles or cereal to make jewelry!
- Play laundry. Give them a basket of rags and socks, plus some clothespins and a clothesline so they can work on their fine motor skills!
- Sticker/Stamp Tracing. Set them up with a piece of paper and some stickers or stampers. Kids can trace lines, shapes, even their name!
These are all tested and approved by the kids in my classes, so they come HIGHLY recommended. Happy Playing!
Extra disclaimer: please use common sense. Choking hazards are still choking hazards, water is still dangerous for kids to be around alone. Make decisions that are right for your family!