SCREEN-FREE ACTIVITIES TO KEEP 3-5 YEAR OLDS BUSY FOR 30+ MINUTES
I'll tell you right off the bat, keeping young kids busy for any extended amount of time is nearly impossible. Since we entered self-isolation over 3 months ago finding new and creative ways to keep our young kids occupied for more than 30 minutes has been nothing short of a miracle. My 5 year old is a bit easier, she would sit and color for almost 30 minutes, but my son, who is 3, no freaking way. I have, however, come up with a very small list of things, made possible only because of the fact that we finally have decent weather, that will keep my kids (and so likely yours) busy for at least 30 minutes. They each involve adult participation, so they are far from perfect, but I actually had fun with some of them, so it could be worse. Here we go:
- Stained Glass Sidewalk Chalk Art: This project involves taping, coloring, getting pretty messy and untaping. 4 things kids love. If you are fussy about how the final product looks, I suggest doing the taping ahead of time and let them color and then they can help with untaping. If you want the project to take as long as humanly possible, let them help with taping. All you will need is masking or painters tape and sidewalk chalk. Here is a Pinterest board with some ideas to get you started here: https://www.pinterest.com/goodjanecbd/quarantining-with-kids/
- Strap them in the stroller and bribe with treats: About once a week I do an extended walk with the kids where we do curbside pick up at the local bakery for donuts that they get to eat on the ride. Its one of those true win/win situations.
- Painted, Inspirational Rocks: This one is 3-fold. Step 1: Go find some flat rocks (an adventure in and of itself). Step 2: paint those rocks. Step 3: place the rocks around the neighborhood to bring other neighbors and passers-by some joy (also a fun I spy game for other people's kids on a walk!).
- Kids Bootcamp: My daughter has gotten really into exercising lately and asks to "workout" most mornings. I have been designing little circuit workouts for her in front of our house that involve jumping, sprinting, squats, etc. She loves it! My son will sometimes join in, or sometimes just scoot around the yard while she does this.
- Have a picnic: Whether you have access to a local park or beach yet or not, you can always picnic in your back yard or on your front stoop. Kids can help make their lunch, pack it up, and eat outside. Bring a ball or frisbee for afterwards, and turn a 20 minute lunch into a 40 minute break!
These are my best ideas currently, but I would love to know if you have anything to add! I am always looking for new ideas! Hit me up on instagram @goodjane.co