You do it all day every work day, non stop, the juggle of taking care of your children while working. How do you do it? Do you plan for it in advance every week or just figure it out on a daily basis?
How often do you have to change the activities up so your child stays entertained without the obvious, screen time?
We have put together a list of some inventive tactics that may buy you anywhere from 15 minutes to half an hour of time. Toddlers are independent and quite able but still struggle with attention spans and long periods of time of independent play. So they still need you to engage with them, encourage, motivate, cheer them on and give them ideas. Keep in mind these ideas are well over and above of the typical ones; drawing, painting, etc and may need your work to be more flexible and mobile throughout the house.
Most often they need you to get them started and then they can be left alone to continue playing. Their own imagination kicks in at some point but they need just need a little push.
- Have a Dance Party – why not? At some random point of the day, ask for their input on the choice of music and turn the volume up (not too loud so you can still think and work). Let them dance it out, jump it out scream and shout. Clap along or not!
- Exercise time – get them active and moving by doing some yoga or aerobic moves. You might need the help of Youtube for this one or you can give them verbal directions as they go along. Change it up every few days so it isn’t the same type of exercises and they feel challenged.
- Bathtub break – have a random bath break to settle them down, and have them play with bubbles and their tub toys. This usually gives you a longer stretch of time as most toddlers love taking baths for a log time. The only caveat might be that you bring your laptop to the bathroom 🙂
- Playdough – assign them characters to make or a little scene even depending on their age. Then check on their work and give them a mark.
- Sensory box/Science box – set up sensory boxes for them to play with ice, cotton balls, bubbles, maybe even toddler friendly scissors and paper. Might get a little messy but it will get them to explore on their own and might occupy them longer than you think.
- Fort play – set up a fort with duvet covers, pillows, blankets. Go real big! Ask them to bring their favourite toys, stuffies and set up their “house”. They will for sure love this one.
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