Activities for May 11th through May 15th
With all of this time at home lately, most of us are searching for fun new ways to entertain our children. There are tons of great ideas out there, but often we find ourselves without all of the supplies. Instead of going out to buy supplies, try some of the fun activities with stuff that you most likely already have around your house! Each week we will be providing you with fun activities for you and your children to enjoy together.
A big predictor of resilience is spending quality time with our children, and being there to listen to their feelings. We may not be changing the rules about what they are allowed to do, but we can still honor their feelings. These activities may be a bridge to having opportunities to listen to what your children are experiencing. Talk about COVID-19 and what you and your children are experiencing, and emphasize how you will be there to help keep them safe.
Scavenger Hunts are easy an activity to do with your children. They require very limited supplies, and the best part is that you can create or change them depending on what you have at home! Although it is fun to have a prize at the end of these activities, it is not necessary. The prizes can be very minimal, a small piece of candy, another activity to do later in the day, etc. If you don’t have anything like that on hand, consider making a coupon reward. You could make coupons for an extra 30 minutes of screen time on the day of their choosing, a get out of one chore free card, 30 minutes of alone time with mom or dad, the options are endless! We have put together a very generic picture scavenger hunt that should go along with most houses, but feel free to add or omit any items. All your kids have to do is take a picture with all of the items on the list, or write what the item is after making contact with it! If your kids enjoy doing this, have them make up their own scavenger hunt for their siblings. Let them get creative and take charge of the activity!
Picture Scavenger Hunt Items:
- Something orange
- Something alive
- Something you bake with
- Something you play outside with
- Something stinky
- The letter P
- Something cold
- Someone doing something nice for others
- The inside of something
- A shadow
- A flower (picture or real)
- All players jumping in the air
- A person or animal you love
- Something you are proud of or you like to do
- Something you use to clean you or something in your house with (toothbrush, shampoo, dish towel, etc.)
- Something you can write with
- A rectangle (like a door or window)—see how many you can find
- A circle (like a doorknob)—see how many you can find
Paper Airplane Contest:
Making something a competition always adds some more fun to it! Let your kids learn how to make paper airplanes and then let them have a contest to see whose airplane works the best! Check out these tutorials on some different ways to fold your paper airplane:
These tutorials require minimal supplies, you will need:
Once you have made your airplanes find a large open space, inside or outside, to start your contest. Try out some of these contest categories:
- Longest flight in distance
- Straightest flight
- Longest time in the air
- Best loop-de-loops
- Highest flyer
Water Play for Toddlers:
An easy activity for your young toddler is always made more fun when you add water! Grab two larger bowls and a ladle. Fill the bowls with some water and let your toddler use the ladle to pour the water back and forth between the bowls. If you want, add other kitchen gadgets such as a slotted spoon, pastry brush etc. This activity may get your child a little wet, but it can keep them entertained for hours!
Mother May I:
You probably played this simple game as a child, but have you ever played it with your children? This is a simple game that is easy to teach and fun to play! First, choose the first person to be the “mother”. (It may be easier to have an adult be “mother” first, to show how the game works.) “Mother” will stand at the end of the room, or designated stopping point. The rest of the players will be at the other end of the room. Each player takes a turn asking “mother” how far they can travel. For example, the first player would say “Mother, may I take 3 large steps forward?” Which “mother” would then reply either “Yes, you make take 3 large steps forward.” Or something along the lines of “No, but you may take 2 large steps forward.” People can ask for hops, crawling, crab-walking, small steps, large steps, fire engines (running as fast forward until mother tells you to stop) or anything that you want to create! The first person to get to “mother” wins and gets to be “mother” in the next round!
Stuffed Animal Musical Chairs:
This is a fun twist on a classic game. You can either play the good old regular musical chairs, or you can add a spin with stuffed animals.
- Enough chairs for every player except one player (If you have 6 players, you will need 5 chairs).
- Music loud enough for everyone to hear
- Stuffed animals
Place all of the chairs in a circle with all of the seats facing out. All of the players will walk in the same direction around the circle of chairs as the music plays. When the music stops everyone will race to sit in a seat. The player who was not able to get to a chair fast enough is eliminated. You play enough rounds until there is one player left.
To put a stuffed animal twist on this, place a stuffed animal on each chair or on the floor in a circle. Instead of trying to find a seat when the music stops, the players will all grab a stuffed animal as fast as they can. The player that does not get a stuffed animal will be eliminated.
Cotton Ball Races:
- Cotton Balls
Cotton Ball races are SO easy to do with your children. Grab your straws and place the cotton balls at the end of the table. Using the straws, see who can blow their cotton ball to the other end of the table the fastest! If this is too easy, try seeing if you can get your cotton ball all the way down the hall.
Paint with Water:
This is a great activity to do when the weather is nice outside. Grab a couple bowls of water and some paint brushes and start painting the sidewalk with water! We find that the foam paint brushes work best, but if you do not have paint brushes available try to get creative. Maybe use a kitchen sponge or a wash cloth. Let your kids be creative and see what they can create! (footprints, handprints, etc.)
Get ready to find out about your children’s hidden talents! Let your kids know in the morning or a few hours before that you will be doing a talent show that evening. Let them think about a talent or two they have, and let them prepare to preform for the family that night. If it is a possibility, clear a large space for the talents to take place. If you want, your children can make tickets to the show or you can have them prepare snacks to have concessions! If you choose, let everyone vote for their favorite act to see who won the family talent show.
Another option is to have a virtual talent show with friends, neighbors or family who are not with you in your home. Everyone can send in a video submission or be connected on Facetime, Facebook Messenger, Skype or some other program. Families can watch the submissions together and then vote on their favorite act!