Child development psychologists and even pediatricians all over the world recommend structuring play activities or even identifying kid’s activities that can guarantee these two fundamental elements: fun and development. It is important to choose activities that are not only fun but can also provide a developmental benefit to children of any age and gender. This is one very important characteristic of today’s children’s activities. We would like our children to have fun while also developing their motor and cognitive skills as well as building their confidence and self-esteem to enable them to interact successfully with their world. Here are 10 seriously fun activities for kids we are certain you and your little loved ones will surely appreciate and enjoy.
Do some yard work.
Kids, especially toddlers and preschoolers, love getting down and dirty. They love picking up things in your yard, digging up dirt, and even playing with twigs and dried leaves. Their curiosity is simply overflowing by this age that it would be quite impossible to dampen this spirit. As such, the next time you are going to do some yard work, make sure to bring out their pretend toys such as toy trolley, shovel, bucket, and digging tools as well as other playthings that they can use to really turn your yard into a mini excavation site. The good thing is that they will also help you with some yard work while also helping them master their motor coordination as well as creativity. If you have some weeds that need to be pulled out, show them how it’s done and your kid will be pulling these out with much gusto that you’ll get the job done in half the time. Teach them how to arrange small stones and other decorative elements to create a landscape that is to your liking. If they encounter bugs or critters, you can teach them the names of these creatures. You can also help them name the colors of the flowers in your yard. That space outside your home can be a trove of treasure for your kids. More importantly, being able to accomplish something and help mom in the process can truly bring a sense of pride in children.
Let those little hands help you in washing the car.
Get your child a little bucket and a small sponge to help you in giving your car a good wash. Kids, as we all know, love playing with water. Now add some bubbly fun to it and they will surely love washing your car. Of course, you don’t have to let them do this alone. The point is for both of you to have fun washing your car. This activity can bring a lot of benefits for your kid. First, it teaches him or her the value of cleaning and keeping your car sparkling new. You can teach them that washing the car is like taking a bath so that dirt can be removed. Just do take the time to explain this analogy to your kid especially if he or she is still quite young. Second, the mere fact that your kid will also be wiping and scrubbing your car with his or her own sponge means he or she will have to use those muscles. Lifting the little bucket will also help strengthen his or her muscles. You can also give your kid a garden hose to help rinse the car while also training his or her hand and eye coordination. There are a lot of things that kids can learn just by helping you wash your car. So, the next time you’re thinking of giving your ride a good wash, skip the carwash and do it together with your son or daughter.
Go on a bug safari.
Some of us are quite squeamish when it comes to bugs and critters. But perhaps we already forgot that as kids we loved these creatures. Well, not really love them but rather fascinated by them. You see, young children are only beginning to explore their worlds. This is the first time that they are appreciating other living things around them. In the first several months of their lives all they ever knew was that they have mom and dad and others around them caring for them. They didn’t know the existence of other life forms. Imagine their curiosity the first time they encounter a bug. While we cannot guarantee that they’ll love it, going on a bug safari can have plenty of benefits for kids. They’ll learn that there are other living organisms aside from people and dogs and cats. They will learn the names of these creatures which can make for a very fascinating read during bedtime. You can get them their own butterfly net and try to catch these lovely flyers. Doing so will help your kid to run freely while helping him or her to coordinate his or her steps, keeping his or her eyes on the butterfly, and knowing just when to swoop the net down.
Try some water gun painting.
When you combine squirt gun shooting and the fascinating art of water color painting, you’ll not only be creating a really fun activity for your kid, you will also be helping him or her develop a variety of skills he or she will need when he or she grows up. Get your kid a squirt gun, it doesn’t really matter what type whether it’s a pistol or a rifle, and fill this up with a water-based colored liquid. You can also experiment with kid-safe water-based pigments that you can dissolve in water. Now, put a large piece of paper against a stable and sturdy surface and shoot away. You can actually turn this into a competitive game especially if you have several kids. Draw an image on the paper and let your kids paint it with their watercolor-filled squirt guns. You’re encouraging your kids to master their reflexes as well as hand eye coordination. More importantly, your child will love expressing his or her creativity using a variety of colors.
Check out our review of some of the top water toys for kids this year.
Paint with chalk.
Kids love playing with colored chalk. You don’t have to be limited to your backyard, though. You can try letting them scribble on the pavement or any other concrete surface in your neighborhood. However, you need to make sure that the chalk you’re going to get for your kids is of the washable type. Otherwise, you’ll have the neighborhood association logging their complaints against you. You can also try to purchase those glow-in-the-dark chalks to try create fantastic artworks at night. The good thing about this activity is that it allows children to really express their imagination and creativity. But there’s more to that. They are essentially using the different information that’s already integrated in their brains. This is how they enhance their problem solving skills.
Wash delicate clothes by hand.
Akin to washing your car is washing some of your clothes, the small ones, by hand. Skip the washing machine and bring out the large basin. Your kids will love washing those fabric materials while lathering the soapy suds on the different textures. Unfortunately, you’ll have to use a different kind of detergent for this as using the ordinary detergent will be too harsh on their hands. That’s why it’s a lot better to hand wash fabric materials that don’t require harsh detergents. Another way you can help protect your kid against these harmful chemicals is to let him or her wear the appropriate gloves. Children can play with bubbles while also introducing them to one of the most important chores they’ll ever have to do when they grow up. However, if you cannot find a kid-friendly detergent, you can just simulate the washing action with plain water mixed with a child-friendly bubble solution. It may not be able to really clean your clothes, but it sure can help your kid understand the need for washing.
Fly a kite.
True, you can give your child a kids drone to control. However, a much more fun way to fly things is by helping your child build his or her very own kite and then let him or her fly it like a pro. Long before the advent of remote controlled helicopters and drones, children all over the world flew kites in various sizes and shapes to give them the thrill of being able to fly something. If you don’t want to build a kite, you can just buy one and fly it right out of the box. However, psychologists believe that children who build their own kites actually have more fun flying it than those that are bought. This provides kids with a sense of ownership to what they built, enabling them to feel more pride. Flying kites can be really beneficial to their physical development as well. This is because, when kids fly their kite, they will have to run against the wind to let the kite go airborne. This also helps them perfect the art of coordinating their bodily movements with what their senses are telling them. Visual and motor coordination are inherently improved in flying kites.
You can get some great ideas for products in our featured post on the best kites for kids here.
Bake and share cookies.
If you’re fond of baking cookies and other delicacies, why not involve your child in the process? Sure, they may have their own toy kitchen complete with toy ovens and all that stuff. But the point is that it’s definitely a lot better to teach them about the different processes involved in the creation of such delicacies. For instance, you can develop their numerical skills by letting them count the number of eggs you will use in each batch of dough. The cups of flour or the teaspoon of shortening that you will be including will also help them understand the concept of measurements. When it’s time to mix the ingredients, your child can also help so that he or she will get introduced to different textures like the slimy feel of eggs and the powdery consistency of flour. The best thing is that once done, you and your child can go to your neighborhood fire station and share with them the cookies that you and your child baked. You then get to introduce your kid to real-life heroes.
Help them establish a kiddie band.
We all know what music can bring to our children. Music can help in improving the cognitive processes in the brain while also helping with the establishment of a more stable emotional state in children. They become naturally friendlier, less prone to fussiness, and are able to adjust easily to any situation. However, instead of letting them listen to their favorite tunes, why not encourage them to build their own musical band? Talk to the parents in your neighborhood and invite their kids to your home, bringing with them their favorite musical instrument. It doesn’t have to be real as long as it can produce sounds. You will then have to organize them to create a wonderful kiddie band. You can group them according to the type of instrument they are playing. This can help improve their social relationship skills while giving them something they can all be proud of.
Engage in some building crafts.
Set aside your LEGO products and K’Nex for a while and bring out the scissors and construction papers as well as other art materials. Now is the time to build or create something with nothing but your kid’s imagination. Build a paper train or even a doll. Let your kid adorn these with different colors and shapes. Create an owl out of a tube of toilet paper or even a mini toy soldier from a soda can. How about building a wooden airplane using only popsicle sticks? You will have to be quite creative yourself for this to work. You can also download craft ideas from the internet to make things a lot easier.
There are thousands of ways you can make every activity fun for your child. What you need to remember is to always look after their safety and what aspect of their development you can help enhance.
You may find some interesting ideas for great products in our article on the best art sets for kids.
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