What are some activity ideas for curious kids?
MOST HELPFUL POSTS
Rachel - posted on 02/26/2010
You can instigate a mailbox full of letters addressed to your child by helping them participate in a variety of mail games.
One popular chain-letter game allows children to receive stickers in the mail as well as letters. To begin, type up a letter that says, "Dear (name), you must forward a set of stickers to the person listed in slot No. 1. Then move my name to slot No. 1, add your name to slot No. 2 and send this letter to 6 friends." Make six copies of the letter and place your child's name in slot 2. Send the letter out to six of his friends. Soon your child should be getting loads of mail containing fun stickers in each envelope.
Another game to help your child to receive mail is to create a continuous story. Enlist the help of some of her friends' mothers to participate in your mail game. Sit down with your child and start a story. For example, "Once upon a time, there was a little girl who loved to ride horses ..." and so on, for about a paragraph. Next, mail the story to a friend. Instruct the friend to continue a paragraph in the story and even add a picture. Then, that friend should send the story to a third friend. You can add as many friends to the story as you like. The story can even go back and forth between people. When you are finished, you should receive a wonderful piece of mail with an imaginative story including lots of pictures.
Finally, kids can start a traditional game with a long-distance family member through the mail. Have your child draw up a tic-tac-toe board and place an X on the board. Mail the letter to Grandma or a favorite Aunt and instruct her to place an O in another square and mail it back. The game continues until someone wins. This is also a great way to encourage communication between your child and distant relatives. He can add a note to his tic-tac-toe board in each correspondence.
These are just some things I do with my kids.
Toni - posted on 02/27/2010
my son and i Love to create things. arts and crafts keep him busy and entertained. a few ideas:
--print out a few coloring pages of animals or ppl, color them, and clue them to popsicle sticks. put on a play :)
--those small brown paper lunch bags are perfect for making hand puppets. Just draw a face on them. And if ya really wanna get creative ( but it cost more ) you can glue the googly eyes and a balloon for a tongue.
--take all ur old broken crayons and peel off all the paper. put them im a cupcake tin, fill about 3/4 full. put them in the oven on 350 for about 5 min. You want them to melt, but u want the centers to still be hard. ( that way u know its not burning ) remove them and let them cool. Then place in freezer to cool completely. then once they are cold. :) they are ready. Pop them out and color away! :)
-- we like to make cards and mail them to grandmas
--homemade playdough. :) and u can even make edible playdough. :)
--rice crispy treats are a fun, quick and easy treat. i liek to let my son pick a food coloring color and then it makes a fun and colorful treat :)
*** there are so many great craft ideas that can be cheep or even free. fun, easy....thats why i love it! i have more ideas if you interest or you can find a lot of fun ideas on the internet. good luck!
Leanne - posted on 02/26/2010
we do our own tresure hunting. we make a list of miscellaneous object that we have arond the house (mostly in kids bedrooms) and everyone looks for the objects in their own rooms. first one to fill jars get to pick a special suprise this time. prizes are pick the movie and make special treat for everyone to share. Gets the rooms tidied up and we all get to spend a night just hanging out with each other. We do outdoor scavenger hunts with a list of nature items and then make a craft out of our findings for in our garden or flower boxes. with the kids getting older now and catching onto my ways, i want to introduce a theme night to my family that everyone has a special part in contributing to. I am going to ask everyone to find out an interesting fact to whatever the theme may be, and share it with the rest of us on that night. we can all help with the prep of the meal and enjoy time together and all become more knoweldgable about different cultures, traditions and basically more about the world we all share.
Chasity - posted on 03/01/2010
I worked in a daycare with kids ranging from 2-5 and one of the greatest "science projects" we did involved worms! We made a "worm hotel". It's very simple, inexpensive and a great way to get kids involved in science. I started out by asking the kids what they thought worms did under ground. We made a list of ideas and then read a short story all about worms. Next we took a large mason jar and began layering sand and potting soil (about a 1/2 inch to an inch thick for each layer) We decorated a dark piece of construction paper to say "Worm Hotel" (glitter paints etc) and then placed our worms on the top layer of soil. Next we wrapped the jar with the dark piece of paper and partially covered the top with a lid (you can cover completely if you poke wholes in the top for air). We left the worms covered for about an hour and then checked on them. This activity was really neat for the kids because they could actually see the worms mixing the dirt and making tunnels. We checked on our worms periodically throughout the day and again the next morning. One of the points that I made sure to explain to the kids is how the worms help the soil (helping plants grow etc.) After checking on our worms the next day we turned them loose in a freshly planted flower bed. The kids talked about the worms for days!
A second idea that was a hit with the three year olds is "the melt down". Simply take an ice cube tray and put a small object inside (for instance we used plastic dinosaurs). then fill the ice cube tray and let it freeze. The next day talk to your child about hot and cold. We talked about different things that were hot and then things that were cold. I asked the kids if an ice cube was hot or cold? I gave the kids each paper towels, a small plastic container and an ice cube. We then tried to figure out ways to melt the ice cube. (holding it between our hands, rubbing it with the paper towels, etc.) the idea is simply to talk to the kids about hot and cold on their level. Ask them open ended questions like why do you think the ice is melting? etc. etc. at the end the kids have a "prize" to play with and they get a fun science lesson!
I found these ideas online! So searching the web for activities that fit your child's interest is probably one of the best suggestions I could give. Science activities for preschoolers are lots of fun and can be very educational. Another suggestion is to take an activity designed for older kids and consider aging it down to fit a younger child if needed. If you have children of different ages sometimes the same activity can be used for both age groups if you simply modify it to fit the older (or younger) child. Asking more difficult questions of your older child can also cause an activity to become more intriguing!
Joanne - posted on 02/26/2010
My daughter love those books with hidden pictures, especially those with animals. She also likes doing mazes and I've been able to find some online that I can print out for her. I get the magazine Family Fun that has lots of ideas in it but there are a ton of free resources online as well.
Jody - posted on 03/09/2010
A big thing we do here is planting seeds!
You can do it on a small scale if you don't have a yard. Just a pot og basil or thyme. Kids will go to it everyday and it gives them something to care for an remember.
We went one step further and bought an AeroGarden for the kitchen. Our 4 year old loves it! You can see almost everyday that it's growing. And it's stupid proof. It tells you when to add water and when to add the nutrient pellets.
Even something as easy as taking the seeds out of an apple and germinating them can be a great project. WARNING: apples take a long time. But beans, pumpkins potatoes are quick. Literally cut a potatoe in 4 and stick it in th edirt...it'll grow. Even something like pansies...they're edible too! You can wash them with egg and coat with sugar to put on their cookies!
Another eco-friendly activity is composting and recycling. Teach teh kids to seperate the items and where they go. My daughter is 4 at teh end of March and has known about compost a long time.
Also, try Youtube.com :
If you want to know about it, somebody has made a video about it!
Hope this helps,
Karol - posted on 03/08/2010
My three older loves to paint, draw, and write. Our everyday activity is yougurt finger paint. It's cheap and it doesn't stain the way normal paint would if she got some where its wasn't suppose to be. I usually buy those cheap quart containers of yougurt and mix small amounts with food coloring.
Jamie - posted on 03/08/2010
The petting zoo and aquarium are great for learning and keep the little ones' attention for quite a while :) If you want or need to stay home, I've found kids love to help in the kitchen. Sometimes this is difficult because they want to help when you're busy making dinner on a hot stove but I like to tell let them make no-bake treats in the middle of the day and then they tend to stay clear of the kitchen when I really need them to stay out.
Katie - posted on 03/08/2010
All kids love playdough! Parents and kids will have a blast making playdough together. Its a fun, easy activity that everybody can help with. Very cheap to make! I'm sure you will have to experiment with colors a bit, but that's part of the fun!
Here's the recipie ....
1 Cup Flour
1/2 Cup Salt
1 Cup Water
3 Dessert Spoons Cooking Oil
2 Teaspoons Cream of Tartar
Food Coloring (optional)
Mix all the ingredients together. Add a few drops of food coloring. Keep mixing until all the lumps have been blended (I use a whisk). Put the mix into a sauce pan (or just mix it up in the sauce pan) and cook very slowly over medium heat. Stir continuously, and when the dough starts to come away fromthe side of the pan, take it off the heat. Remove the playdough from the pan (Adults do this part - its hot). Let it cool on plastic wrap, then have fun!
Vicki - posted on 03/07/2010
Hi everyone, I have enjoyed reading all your ideas. Running a Family Day Care business I am always looking for new ideas and something different. Some children are soo busy that activities only hold their interest for a short time, and so some of these ideas are great as the children can come and go and still not miss out on the activity - like the worm farm or an ant farm, or another pet activity. I alo love the idea of melting iceblocks containing little 'surprises', Each child could have their own then. I have filled balloons with water (sometimes with added food colouring ) and frozen them. The children poured warm watewr on them and listened to the 'cracking' noises and we discussed what was happenning, then they took it to the sand pit and buried it, then washed it - named it and played for hours with it. Children who did not stay involved for long could pop back and see what was happenning - it was getting smaller - and everyone was disappointed when it finally melted away.
Amber - posted on 03/07/2010
I let my daughter put on an old bathing suit and get into an empty bath tub. Then I spray cheap shaving cream on the wall and let her "finger paint" the walls and the tub. When she's done you just spray her and the shower down and that's all. It even leaves the bathroom smelling good!
Pamela - posted on 03/06/2010
Simply Remember to "Stop and smell the roses" we're often too busy with everyday stuff that we don't notice the little things like how the glass of cold water in a warm room starts to sweat, such a thing can start anything from a science lesson to a competition of who's droplet, reaches the table first,or grab a couple of straws and blow bubbles then drink it dry contest. Everyday chores can be equally fun matching socks competitions, to identify the sock puppet via "who's line is it" Just slow down enough to let your mind think like a kid again.
Catherine - posted on 03/06/2010
I have 4 grown children, very well-adjusted, all are either in college or have their degrees already! I found early that you can teach your child while they are having fun and they dont even realize it. We were a young military family, all the kids born very close together so money was tight. I used to go to the "Everything's a Dollar" store and load up a basket with activity books. The kids loved them and they learned from them. Art supplies are a must in my opinion. One year my mother-in-law took a fruit basket and covered it with fabric, camoflauge for the boys and pink for the girl. I filled it with crayons, paper, glue, paints, etc... They all had a huge sketch pad of their own and would spend hours at the dining table making mommy treasures, Sidewalk chalk is great. Let them have the entire driveway to draw lovely pictures. Be sure to take a pic with your camera before it rains, I wish I had. Sports are great, I started them each in T-ball at age 3. I didnt have the internet back then but im sure there are some awesome activity ideas, a curious kid just needs to use their imagination to feel occupied. Easy bake ovens are great as well with a little help from mom or dad.
Joanne - posted on 03/04/2010
Build a Fairy House. Start in a small sheltered area like a hollowed-out tree trunk and fill it with all of the creature comforts a magical creature might want. Natural materials gathered in the garden, woods or on nature walks are best.
For older children you might even create some fairy furniture using natural items combined with scraps of sparkly cloth, lace and beads.
My daughters MeMe takes the little girls out for fairy "hunts", using sticks for wands they search for signs of fairies and pretend to call out all the colorful fairies they "see."
Melanie - posted on 03/04/2010
Dear Roanne I think the answer that you need is that everybody has his/her own natural intelligence (please google this). Now your child is one of those who learns through movement. Meaning that is how they store information thus yes you will need to keep your active when they are about to learn new things or learn anything period. They learn through touch, feeling and moving things from one space to another. The other thing you should do is buy a big ball for your child to sit on (one of those hopping balls) and take away the chair your child sits on when reading to your child, or when your child needs to learn or read or what ever the case may be. Being active means they need to experience a lot of things - and taking your child for a walk, to the shops, having a pick nick or buying all sorts of things and placing it in front of him or her will be an activity in itself. Sometimes we are impatient and do not understand that picking up stones, sand, twigs etc is an activity as well and don't want to give our children that freedom. Yet this is very necessary. I hope this helped. Further there is a lot of fun stuff you can draw from the internet for children to do. You could just google that as well but don't forget that it is the simple activities in life (what we experienced as children) that will appeal to our children as well.
Jenifer - posted on 03/03/2010
I loved the post about the old vcr and the screw driver, though with younger kids that really isn't an option. Different size boxes or totes filled with different things. I think every kid enjoys taking things out and putting things back in. My first son we got him Leap Baby computer program with the special keyboard and he enjoyed being able to make the characters do things. But some parents would rather stay away from electronics. There are so many different things. I think I'll keep reading more posts. :-)
PAMELA - posted on 03/03/2010
For my son it was the cuboards in the kitchen area . i made sure anything that could hurt him was put up high, and let him play with the pots and pans and he would hide his own toys in the drawers and go back and find them later. He gets a kick out of it .
Mel - posted on 03/02/2010
BAKING AND COOKING - ANY AGE, YOU CANT GO WRONG. my 2 girls who are almost 2 and almost 4 love getting messy in the kitchen! we do baking every week, especially in the weekends. we have a scone tradition on sundays and every sunday we come up with something new to put in them wether its savoury or sweet. they love helping tip cups of ingredients in and mixing stuff. (as well as licking the bowls clean when done!) they also love making BREAD BASKETS, theyre a simple affordable snack for a child of any age. you just get the child to butter the bottom side of the bread (so it doesnt stick) place them into muffin tins, add all your vege pieces (or pretty much whatever you and the kids want in them) add some grated cheese and bake in the oven! you could use chopped up meat or you can do them sweet - add pureed apple and peach with a custard topping - anything at all!!! the kids will love it!
Katie - posted on 03/02/2010
with older kids like 5ish you can take old light bulbs and paper mache over them then wait for them to dry and paint them. when the paint drys smack them lightly on the edge of a table or counter and u have home made maracas! lots of fun!
Jennifer - posted on 03/02/2010
Taking kids to the zoo, aquarium, or planetarium are great ideas. They'll ask tons of questions and become super interested in all they learned. Plus, it's interesting for the adults too. Who knows? Maybe your child will grow up to become an astronaut all because you helped him/her explore their curiosity!
Laurie - posted on 03/01/2010
I live near Hamilton Ontario. The best activities involve the outdoors- lakes, ponds, streams, conservation areas and trails, to explore rocks, bugs, birds & plants. Anyplace with a play barn and barn animals is good too. We hiked all year round & the kids had cross-country skiis. Tobogganing & skating are fun too.
Katie - posted on 03/01/2010
In a tubberware bowl, freeze some water and a few small toys, rocks, jewels, beads or little plastic animals and bugs. Once its frozen stick your kids on the back patio and they can watch it melt or give them some small tools to chip at it and find the things that you have frozen. Perfect for when its more warm outside!
Amanda - posted on 03/01/2010
Hi...draw pictures on index cards or letters and go outside or in the house and match the index card to and object that is the same as the picture or starts with that letter depending on the age. A "T" could go on tree or table, or the picture of the table would go on the table. Matching is a great learning tool. And they would have to search for something a little more for "Q" like a quilt or a picture of a queen, etc.
Also, the drawing in shaving cream is great. Have them draw faces Give them cheerios, twizzlers or something to make eyes and mouths. Ask them what a happy face would look like, and so forth.
Also, let them help bake!!! They love it.
Kelly - posted on 03/01/2010
My kids, 2 and 4 years old, Love to cook and our favourite thing to do is take the big rolls of paper cover the bottom half of our walls and get the paints out. We also make decorations and things out of modelling clay then paint them and paper mache is really fun too. I have an art wall in the play room where I display all of their canves art. I go to the dollar store, buy canves and let them go to town on it. You can also purchase wooden frames at the dollar store and let them paint on those then give them as gifts to grandparents, aunts and uncles etc. The possibilities are endless...... Have fun being creative!!!!!!!!!!!!
April - posted on 03/01/2010
.My 9 year old when he was a few years younger loved to go on scavenger hunts with me or just walking through the woods to see what we could find. Now they have built a subdivision in our woods and we can no longer do that. Another thing we both used to enjoy is the match game but instead of matching cards I would make math problems or use compound words, etc...
Felicia - posted on 03/01/2010
I have a four year old son who loves to play games. He really loves to get on the computer and play the games on the websites for nick.com, nickjr.com, and pbs.com.
All of this which are games of cartoons that he watches. He has actually learned alot from just the games. He also like to read, write, and color. I have found that its just easier to find activites that fit my childs personality for him to do.
Natalie - posted on 03/01/2010
I picked up a cheap digital camera at the dollar store and the kids go outside/inside and find things for each letter of the alphabet and take a picture of it. Then I make the pictures into a slide show and they play it for the rest of the family and pretend to be a teacher explaining what letter each thing goes with and what it is. It has helped a lot with learning letters.
Elizabeth - posted on 03/01/2010
One thing I found that children love is to mix corn flour (starch with water into a paste, add colour and/or small toys. Best outside, easily cleaned. Collect odds and ends, buttons, cardboard roll, yogart pots, scraps of material, glitter, anything you can think of, add paste and paper, stand clear !!!
Kelley - posted on 02/28/2010
Check out your local library. Mine offers a number of programs for all ages (baby-teenagers), and they are usually free. My daughter loves getting out and seeing the other children. Plus, we get to learn new songs (that usually incorporate actions or even sign language) and ready stories.
Teresa - posted on 02/28/2010
Hi Roanna, depending on the age and stage of your child/children there lots of activitys which can not only be fun but also educational and encourage development, for instance children love to feel they are participating in 'grown up activitys' as much as playing child games, for example going to the store can in its self be fun, lots of mums find this difficult and I am sure the children do to, I used to make a game of it by cutting out pictures from magasines of the things I would be buying on arriving at the store I would give the children the pictures and ask them to help me find them in the store giving them a gold star to stick on the picture when they found it, at the end if they had collected enough stars they would be allowed a speial treat for being helpful to mum, another activitey while shopping was finding the ingrediants to cook something special when we got home, encouraging the children to count the number of apples we were going to use for example and learning to weigh was also teraching them the beginning of new skills, If you find at home they are getting bored then do some thing unusual we often 'built castles in the lounge using all sorts of things such as cardboard boxes and blankets and old clothes for dressing up! children have a wondeful imagination and for the adult it can be so easy, you dont neccesarily have to spend lots of money to find the right activeity just a little thought and time and enjoy !! good luck
Pamela - posted on 02/27/2010
Try these fun things;
1, planting - plant some veg, flowers and/or herbs and get her to look after them you can do this in pots and is great learning tool for all areas of development in children of all ages
2, art/craft - get making from things around the home, add paints and let your child's mind go wild!
3,painting - use sticks, leaves, cotton buds, fingers, brushes etc change it up even use other things different to paper like cardboard, old tiles, leaves, bark etc
hope these help you they are all get things for devloping a child's mind, body and lot's of fun as well!
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