Continuing on from last week's post, here are some more activities to give you some inspiration to keep your kids busy this week. I’ve included 5 activities, one for each week day should you need or want it.
I’m gonna start this off by saying: if you’re a sensory play beginner, you may want to take this outside. Depending on the ages of your kiddos oobleck can be messy. However, it is super fun too - so in my opinion it’s very much worth the potential mess. If you’ve read my other sensory blogs you’ll know that my go-to container for sensory play is my Flisat table. I love it because I can have multiple bins out at once. So for oobleck play I can have one container with oobleck, one with water, and one with tools/toys. You could recreate this with a couple of bins next to each other if you don’t own the Flisat.
My girls’ favorite is when I add cocoa powder to make it look like mud. They love to bury their sensory stones in it, and then wash them off in some water. As with all sensory play; some type of scoop, and bowls always go down well too. Oobleck can also be fun when it’s dried up, so if you wanted to get the maximum use out of it you could let it dry out and use it again for a different activity!
You can find my post with our oobleck recipe here.
Letter Search (post it’s)
This one is super fun if you have a preschooler, my toddler is still a bit too little to really engage, but she does enjoy running around with her sister haha. It’s super simple to set up; you pretty much write letters on post-it notes and scatter them throughout your house.
Okay, there’s a little more to it, but not much. Pick a number of letters. I like to do around 10 letters, because I find that’s what my daughter’s attention span is, but you can do more or less depending on what works for your child. Write each letter on a post-it note, and stick them in a line on one wall. Then write the same letters on another set of post-it’s, but this time spread them around your house. Your child’s job is then to find each letter, and bring it to its matching letter in the line. To start with I like to use all upper-case, or all lower-case letters, but once your child gets more familiar with their letters, it can be fun/more challenging to do a mix.
Playdough will forever be a recommendation of mine, it’s so incredibly versatile, and loved by children of all ages (and adults too!) making it a great go-to activity. I’m going to recommend making some playdough at home. It can seem daunting to make it yourself, but it’s pretty simple, and my girls love to do it themselves. Not only is it a fun opportunity to introduce some math concepts (weighing/measuring) but you can customize the color/smell of your playdough. If you want to give it a go, you can find my favorite recipe here. If you’d prefer not to make your own, then grab your favorite pre-made playdough, and get stuck in!
Threading Cheerios on Spaghetti
This is a great activity for developing fine motor skills, it’s also simple to set up, and adapt to different ages. I'd also wager that you have all of the ‘equipment’ on hand already. You need:
- Dry spaghetti
Grab a blob of playdough and stick it to the table. Next, you’re going to take a piece of the spaghetti and stick it upright into the playdough. Put some cheerios into a small container, and you’re ready to go. Your child can now thread the cheerios onto the spaghetti, and back off again if they’d like. If you’d like to include counting in the activity I’d suggest breaking the spaghetti into a smaller piece that only allows for the amount of cheerios you’d like to count with your child to fit on.
This activity is perfect for preschoolers that are working on their writing pathways (lines and shapes that will eventually help them write letters) or for school-aged children that are working on letter formation.
- Some sort of tray, I find that my rectangle pyrex containers work well, but a baking sheet works well too.
- Fine sugar, sand or salt to cover the bottom of your chosen container.
- Visual aids -You can do this by drawing on paper/dry erase board. If you’re using writing pathways, you can Google what these look like, and if you’re using letters, then draw the letter your child will be practicing on some paper. You could also use flashcards if you have them available.
Take your visual aid and place it next to the container of salt. Your child can now practice forming the lines/letters in the salt with their finger. Once they’ve attempted it, shake the tray to reset the salt. Repeat as many times as you’d like with each shape/letter. Try to make sure your child is following the correct formation of the letters, you can find this on Google if you’re unsure.
I hope these activities give you some play/learning inspiration for the week! If you missed last week's post, you can find that here.