Activities for Playful Parenting
Raising children is hard. Keeping them engaged and coming up with new ideas or activities every day can be a little daunting. To ease your plight and help your child, we have listed out 10 simple and fun activities that can be executed by you within the comforts of your home. These are easy on your pocket and engaging for both you and your child.
Each activity meets the criteria of three Es – Engage. Entertain. Educate. Let’s get started, shall we?
Fill a can or big vessel with uncooked rice and put in little things that your child can find – spoons, balls, toys, and other trinkets. This little activity is less messy as opposed to sandboxes filled with treasures. This keeps your little one engaged and entertained. You can make it more exciting by asking them to find the maximum number of things within a time frame. You could set it up as a competition if you have more than one child.
This activity helps improve numerical skills and motor skills in children.
Everybody loves a good treasure hunt that is replete with maps, riddles, clues, and some tasks, don’t we? Make your house the home of a pirate quest or an army’s mission to save the country. Give your child a map with all the clues to get them playing. For example, a clue on the fridge can be worded as – ‘I am cold and unhappy when left open. Who am I?’
Activities like treasure hunt help children improve their map reading abilities and reasoning skills when they interpret the clues.
The At-home Cafe
Convert those solitary moments in the kitchen into a fun activity for your child. Ask them to play a different role each day. They could be a chef, cashier or friendly waiter. Encourage them to participate in a different activity. As a chef or helper, they can read out a recipe to you, and another day, sell their handmade cookies for a charity.
Every role that your child plays will help them foster some new skills. Cooking along with you will teach them about new ingredients and recipes. Being a waiter will help them learn about communicating with customers; roleplaying a cashier can make them penny-wise. A win-win in all scenarios.
Get your child to create a time capsule by getting them to collate their precious memories in a nice box. You can get them to be more creative by creating a reel of photos or anything else they want to add to their time capsule.
This little activity will help your child appreciate the moments of togetherness and cherish the memories that make them smile. A beautiful exercise to bond with your child and create a memory bank unlike any other.
Reading is said to send you on adventures without you moving from your couch. Get your little one to snuggle up with some fun reads. You can ensure they read by popping surprise quizzes about the book or characters they encountered in their reading time.
It is a perfect way to improve your child’s vocabulary and comprehension skills. Also, the endless adventures that reading brings into their life is incomparable.
Create Calming Jars
Your child too goes through phases of anxiety, stress and panic. Get together and create calming jars for them. These little gems can be made using a clear water bottle, some clean hand wash liquid, some coloured hand wash liquid, water, beads and three types of glitter. Pour all the ingredients in the bottle, seal it with glue and shake well. It will serve a soothing experience for your child. Try it.
This little activity helps your child work towards constructive ways of addressing their stress or anxiety. Also, this DIY is a chance to bond with your child and understand them better.
Your child can become the president for a day at home and take all important decisions. You can cheer the young leader and teach them the rules about what it takes to make it big in the world.
A perfect way to tap into their leadership skills and help them understand the true value of being a leader.
As parents, the most common challenge is to get your child to tidy their wardrobes. A little gaming twist can make it a worthwhile affair for all. You can start a make-believe game by telling your child that a monster will be coming out of their cupboards. The only way to defeat the monster is to keep the cupboard clean and organised so it doesn’t find any space to hide. This activity can be tweaked as per your need every time you need your child to clean up their space.
Your child will learn basic skills like maintaining cleanliness and order. Assigning such tasks and entrusting them with house chores help them become independent and responsible.
Drive-in Movie Night
Turn your regular movie nights into a fun-filled drive-in scenario. Convert your sofa into a make-believe car with props like horns on it or use clean laundry baskets to serve as their individual make-believe cars. Make your dinner a typical drive through delicacies that can be complete with homemade burgers, baked potato chips and a freshly blended fruit punch. Make it more memorable with some fun animated, action-packed movies that have you and your child rolling on your sides.
Movie nights are a great opportunity to bond with your child, know about their likes and dislikes. Also, movies can serve as a great way to inculcate some values or let them know about important life lessons. They can glean a lot about bravery, courage, love, faith, fear and how to overcome it, etc. and much more.
Putting up a puppet show is a creative challenge for both you and your child. It helps in bringing together your craft and theatre skills into play. You can start small with finger puppets and then move onto making bigger puppets which can be stitched, etc.
Puppetry will bring handcrafting skills of you and your child to the fore. Storytelling and ability to interpret emotions can be learned by your child when executing the puppet show.
This list is not exhaustive but will help you to start some amazing times with your child. You will certainly be able to engage, entertain and educate them.
Mariam Taqui Ali (pro tip: the middle name is pronounced tuh-key)
A Word slayer, pluviophile, baker, traveller; among other things, knows the correct usage of punctuation and the difference between your and you’re.
She spent some time (read a lot of time) writing, editing and keeping track of word counts. Her trysts with writing and editing has led her to interact with experts from diverse industries like healthcare, wellness, HR, business and technology. Having experienced all that, she continues her professional explorations, to learn, to grow and to be a value add.
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