Here are a few ideas of activities meant to stimulate the mind and hands of your little ones, using what is directly available around the house !
String pearls using toilet paper rolls
Keep your toilet paper rolls. Offer your child to paint them first, then cut them in two or three parts to make the beads. For your child to string the pearls, get a piece of string, shoelaces or a ribbon and tie one of the beads to one end, as a stopper.
This activity is easy to prepare and ideal to develop the child’s fine motor skills, patience and concentration.
Draw on a cardboard box and use it to play with
Keep your delivery cardboard boxes and let your child decorate them as he pleases (pencils, stickers, etc). Your child will then be able to let his or her imagination lead the way (play inside it, use it as a hideout, or as a car…)
Make a paper airplane
Your child can first draw on a piece of paper, then enjoy watching his/her customised airplane fly around!
This model is a simple one (tested and approved!) but you can find many more on the internet:
Wash the dishes
We all know that kids love to play with water!
Let them do the dishes using plastic material or kitchen play sets. This activity helps develop the child’s autonomy.
Build a car track
Play with toy cars in a different way by designing tracks with thick tape on the floor, going in different directions and making different patterns. Use cardboard boxes to make bridges and tunnels! Your child will learn how to follow lines and understand notions such as going above or under.
You can also adapt this activity as a sorting game by using LEGOs of different colours, for instance; your child can then transport the pieces to the corresponding colour.
Matching game using shoes
Choose shoes of different sizes and shapes and trace the outline on a large piece of paper. Your child can match the shoes with the shapes you have drawn!
Sorting out socks
You have just done your laundry but don’t have time to sort out the socks? Ask your child to help out! This activity helps your child work on the different sizes and colours and fulfils his/her needs for “order”, typical for a toddler.
Agility throwing game
Hit and knockout play:
Reuse plastic cups or empty tins and arrange them in a pyramid. Give your child small balls to throw at the pyramid: the aim is to knock down all the cups!
Throw in a bucket:
Use plastic buckets or baskets. Your child can train at throwing balls into the different baskets. You can vary the size and distance to increase the difficulty level.