When your child is a toddler, they are at a very active phase in their life. Constant movement is encouraged to keep up with their mental and physical development and to match their high energy levels. Keeping your child physically active is important so that all their functionalities develop properly. The ages between two years to five years can be quite tricky. Your child is developing plenty of gross and fine motor skills along with traits such as social skills and self-control. You do not have to spend a lot of money to keep them engaged throughout the day. Simple activities can do the trick just fine.
Hide and Seek with a Musical Twist
Get a music playing device that can be placed in a spot that is within their reach. It can be something as simple as your phone or iPad. Hide it away from plain sight and let them hunt for where the music is coming from. Help them with it without directing them exactly to the point. This will be a great bonding activity that will get them running around on their little feet while improving their sense of direction. This activity is suitable for multiple children and can be handled by just one adult person.
Pick any color that the kid likes or if you are playing with multiple children, you can assign one color to each child. It will be nice if this is played in a multi-purpose room or a room that is fully equipped with different kinds of objects around including curtains, cushions, pictures, chairs, and more. Ask the child to locate all the objects within their reach that are of the color assigned to them. If they are done with one color, you can switch to another color. Playing this with one child will be more effective as you can work with the different colors but you can carry out this activity with multiple children as well.
We all know the basic shadow animals that we can make, including bunnies and dogs. If you don’t really know how to do this, look it up on YouTube. It is very easy and costs you nothing. You don’t even need much equipment. All you need to do is switch off all the lights and get a good flashlight to get you going. Make them guess the animals and the shapes that you make through the shadows. You can also trace different shapes just using the flashlight and ask them to follow it and guess the patterns.
Your toddler has way more energy than you can imagine or muster during the day. Stretching is a good way to keep them occupied and burn out some of that energy in a productive and helpful way. Teaching them the importance of exercise from a very young age can prove to be very helpful in setting a wonderful lifestyle for their future. Make it a fun activity and don’t stress too much on the accuracy of the exercise. Have fun with it. Do simple things like bending down and touching your toes or sitting down and forming shapes with legs.
Play with Balloons
Do you find yourself running out of ideas to keep your energetic toddler engaged? Play with balloons! There is no toddler who is not excited by the idea of colorful balloons bouncing up and down in the air. Kids irrespective of gender enjoy playing with balloons and you can make it a fun activity for them by getting a little creative with the games. If you are involving one toddler in the activity, make sure that they keep up the balloon for as long as possible. If multiple children are playing, try to induce a little playful challenge to see who can hold them up in the air the longest by bouncing them.
Legos and more
It is time to let the creative and intellectual juices flow. Get those building blocks out and ask the toddler to build towers as high as they go. Watch over them carefully to make sure that they do not eat the pieces or do anything that they shouldn’t. Teach them the importance of stacking them carefully so that the tower does not collapse. Get them to form multiple towers attached together by a bridge or however they like. It is a fun and engaging activity that will keep many toddlers busy and thoughtful.
What better way to get introduced to the very basics of zoology than actually be the animals? How does the frog hop? Show them rather than tell them and ask them to imitate you. Make sounds like crows or lions so that they know. Imitate animals of different kinds and sizes through different mannerisms that are unique to the animal in question. Mostly try to focus on moving like the animal. Try to teach them to hop, waddle, crawl and more, no need of swinging. It will keep them very physically active and they will enjoy it for sure.
This is a super creative and fun activity that will keep the children physically active while also learning something very important that they need for their life later. Understanding traffic signals is not something that has to be done in a boring classroom through textbooks. Instead, you can take the initiative and cut out three circles. Color them in red, yellow, and green. On the green circle, write down the word Start or Go. On the yellow circle, write down the word Wait, and on the red write Stop. You can hold up these circles one by one and the children can be the traffic. They need to stop when you hold up red, slow down when you hold yellow, and go fast when they see green.
This is a multi-step activity that can keep your child engaged for quite a while. Take pillows, at least four or five of them. Stack them together with your child. Tell them that you have to build a fort and get them to help you by stacking it in unique forms. Once you have created the pillow fort, have fun destroying it by taking the pillows and engaging in little pillow fights and role-play of destroying the fort. It will be a lot of fun and it involves a lot of movement which is good for your child.
More Pillow Games
Use as many pillows as you like for this. Different shapes and sizes are greatly encouraged. Get different colors in as well. Have fun throwing it around with your child at first. Stack them together and throw them around from the pile. An empty room would be a great idea for this activity. Once you have enough on the floor, you and your child can jump, roll around and dance on the pillows. Use the pillows to just keep moving as much as you want them to.
Aiming and Throwing Things
You can roll up little socks into balls and throw them into the laundry basket. Of course, your child should join you too and you can make a good game out of this to see who gets in the most number of socks. Alternatively, you can roll up the waste paper and throw them into the dustbin together. An even more fun idea is to wet some sponge and throw it around. You can see how far the sponge will reach and how the weight of the sponge affects the distance that it can be thrown at. Now, this is an activity that is fun for both!
Walking on thin lines
Use duct tape or anything that will not really ruin your carpet or floor or wherever you decide to conduct the activity. Make a thin enough line but not too thin that your child hurts themselves trying to keep themselves on the line. This will teach your children how to balance themselves on things and walk carefully. It is a great physical as well as a mental exercise as it helps in building concentration and self-confidence upon achieving prompt accomplishment of a seemingly difficult task.
Simon Says/Follow the Leader!
These traditional games never fail to entertain children and even adults. If you have run out of innovative ideas, there is nothing wrong with sticking to the classics. Play a game of follow-the-leader and see what your children have to come up with. Let them lead once in a while. Or you can play the just as popular game of Simon Says! Make sure that they do the activity only when they hear you say Simon Says. You can get them to do silly and fun things that will leave you both laughing a lot.
Put on MTV or YouTube and get grooving. Focus on songs that your children like or enjoy and of course without any of the profanities that hip-hop and other music are infamous for. You can even dance to their favorite nursery rhymes or choose from the many children-friendly songs that you will find online that have catchy beats. Let them dance like they don’t care. Teach them some nice new moves if you can. Dance together and encourage them to dance alone as well. This is a great physical activity that builds a lot of self-esteem.
Who does not like a good old game of treasure hunt? Just hide one of their favorite toys and send them on a hunt. If they are younger, you can just use words like hot or cold and get them to find the object that you have hidden. Or else, you can leave very simple clues and get them to think a bit if they are a bit older and can read. This is a great bonding and mental exercise as well as a good way to keep them on their feet.
There you go! A lot of fun activities that you can engage your children in that will keep them physically active and happy. Be sure to try out as many of these as you can! Your child will love it.