Creative Play Activities
Shadow Tracing, Monster Trucks & Ice Painting
Toddler activities at home
It is almost Easter time. Although devastation has occurred around the world with this COVID-19 pandemic, families are trying to have faith and positivity. We are certainly amongst those as we try to implement simple, yet fun activities with our toddler. Don’t get me wrong, occasional depression sets in with widespread boredom; but I try to remember that we have our health when others aren’t so lucky. Take a minute to reflect on your blessings and what you DO have. Here are some creative play activities for your toddler. Both indoor and outdoor play!
So after some reflection, I mustered up the energy to create some easy, yet fun activities for my little man. We were blessed with some sunshine today (up in Massachusetts it’s been scarce lately), so we were in the backyard by 9:00a.m.!
We made sure to bring some cold drinks and a small snack (after having breakfast not too long ago). You can NEVER have enough snacks around with a toddler. We gathered some items into a bucket/tray. Monster trucks, a shovel, dump truck, dinosaurs, markers, and construction paper! That’s IT!
My son fiercely wanted to play with his dump truck in the dirt. Sure, why not. In front of our back deck we have a small dirt/sand area where his sandbox typically goes every summer. (When the summer ends we dump the sand and preserve it in the basement). He still enjoys playing in that exact dirt spot during spring or fall.
I helped my three year old create a monster truck track with a shovel. I dug a few holes and created some hills. As a result, my moody three-nager was ONE HAPPY toddler. That’s all it took! He spent a good amount of time self-playing. It’s a good thing to give children their space and time alone to play and think. Also, toddlers shouldn’t be required to play in a particular fashion or for a particular amount of time. Having choice and allowing them to take the lead, allows for their independence to grow!
Next, I set up some toy animals under pieces of construction paper. Allowing the sunlight to hit in a particular way created awesome shadows on the colorful paper! When he was ready to move on to the next activity, he picked a blue marker and traced the animal shadows. Well, he asked momma to show him first. I traced a horse and an elephant, while my son traced a dinosaur and a cow. You can slightly move the paper to demonstrate what shadows are and how they work.
Finally, our last activity brought us inside to the table! I used a glass pyrex dish and filled it with ice cubes. Yes, ice cubes. Who doesn’t like the idea of painting something totally outside of the box? We used washable paint of course, and created a colorful dish of ice. Communicating during ANY activity is always favorable. Think of open-ended questions you can ask your toddler while playing. ‘What does painting the ice feel like?’ Think of different ADJECTIVES to expose your child to. For instance, as we painted the ice, I asked my son if painting ice cubes felt slippery or dry? Do the ice cubes look frozen or liquidly? Do they look clear or cloudy?
After our morning fun…
We shared a decadent mac n cheese lunch followed by watching a movie on Disney+. MOM TRUTH: An event-filled morning leads to a super simple lunch/afternoon. THAT’S OKAY MOMMAS!
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