Posted on Leave a comment

Ideas for Indoor Kid Activities on a Rainy Day

Fun Places in Everyday Spaces: Ideas for Indoor Kid Activities on a Rainy Day

When it’s raining, children are often at a loss for something to do, and you’re left grasping for some indoor activity that’ll keep them from hunkering down for a marathon session of video gaming and snacking. Technology’s a great thing, but it can be a real obstacle for parents looking for ways to keep kids active and engaged on a rainy day.

However, it’s actually not as hard as it sometimes seems. A little creativity from you and a willingness on the part of your kids to have fun in new ways can lead to an adventurous day of giggling and collaborative enjoyment. Here are a few ideas to get the ball rolling.

Group Storytelling

This one will turn kids into expert storytellers. Get a ball (a beach ball or small rubber ball will do fine), and have them all sit in a circle. One kid starts with “Once upon a time…” and rolls the ball to another kid, who then continues the story in any way that strikes the imagination. Once he or she has contributed, the ball rolls to the next kid, and it goes on that way for 15 to 20 minutes — or longer if you like — until someone concludes the tale. It’s an excellent way to stimulate everyone’s creativity and develop verbal skills.

Homemade Obstacle Course

This one’s always a popular idea. Collect some mats, cushions, and furniture that can be crawled under and create your own obstacle course. Establish your own rules as to how each child must navigate the course. One fun challenge could be to carry a ping pong ball or hard-boiled egg along in a spoon as they go, with each contestant who fails to cross the finish line with ball or egg in spoon is disqualified. Use a timer to determine who completes the course the fastest.

Spider and the Fly

Establish a course around the house for each “fly” to traverse. As each one passes by, the “spider” will try to throw the blanket/web to try and ensnare his prey. A fly is officially considered trapped in the spider’s web if it touches any part of their body passing by. The game ends when the spider has trapped every fly in its web. Flies can get creative about dodging the spider’s web, but the spider has to keep trying until each fly has been caught.

Jump the Stream

This is another good one for burning off some of that energy. Line up a series of small objects in two parallel lines, about a foot apart. Tell the kids this is a stream, have them line up on either side, and tell them to jump across without touching in between the lines. If they do, it means their foot got wet and they’re disqualified. Once the first round is over, widen the distance a little bit and keep going until the stream becomes a river.

Videos

Remember, there are countless YouTube videos that offer everything from music lessons to drawing tutorials and math drills. They’re also good teaching aids and can help children sharpen classroom skills they need for a career such as real estate. According to Redfin, “Real estate is a complex field that requires skills in math, science, English, social studies, and home economics. By incorporating real estate-based lessons into your curriculum, you can help students gain valuable skills in practical math application, presentation, forming a persuasive argument, earth science, and so much more.” You can also find fun science experiments online, such as the rainbow magic milk experiment.

Rainy days can be a lot of fun if you know how to transform everyday items and familiar indoor spaces into realms of imagination and learning. Look around and imagine how kids might adapt their surroundings. Who knows? They might not want to wait for the next rainy day to do it all over again.

Courtesy of Pixabay.com

Posted on Leave a comment

Parenting with a Disability

Parenting with a Disability - Photo courtesy of Unsplash

Parenting with a Disability - Photo courtesy of Unsplash

Photo courtesy of Unsplash

Welcoming a child into your life is certainly something to celebrate. However, it is also a time full of nerves and anxiety, especially if you live with a disability. Here’s some advice to help prepare your home and yourself for the lifestyle changes that come with being a new parent.

Becoming a parent means that life is about to get somewhat chaotic, so take some time before the baby arrives to prepare as much as you can. Decide where the baby is going to sleep and make the proper accommodations by selecting an easy to use crib. Also think about whether you plan to feed them formula or will need a breast pump. You should stock up on changing supplies and frozen meals so you don’t have to make as many trips out. Clean the house, make sure you have a baby monitor, and get a stroller or baby carrier to help make your life easier.

You’ll want to childproof your home as well. Put non slip mats in the tub, lock the toilet seat, get a cover for the spout, and a bathtub ring to help support their body in the water. Secure doors to appliances, cabinets and drawers with child safety locks and use swimming noodles to soften the edges of doors to rooms so they don’t scrape themselves. Additionally, be sure to cover outlets, hide any cords, and gate off stairs, fireplaces or railings.

In order to transport your child, you’ll need to pick out a booster or car seat that fits you and your baby’s needs. The many styles available can be overwhelming, but chances are if it is being sold in the U.S. it meets federal regulations and will provide adequate protection no matter the cost. To ensure that you buy the right one for your family, do plenty of research so you feel confident about your decision and can have peace of mind while driving. It should be rear facing and in the middle back seat of your vehicle. As you use it, be careful to check the expiration date so you know when it is no longer suitable for your child’s age.

Raising children points out that while, “The type of support you need obviously depends on your disability, there are many technologies and assistive devices that can help with daily family life.” Consult with your doctor and other healthcare professionals in order to come up with practical solutions to the inevitable and various challenges that will come your way as a parent. Consider joining a support group so you can express your fears and any questions you may have before the baby comes. Find a local class where you can practice how to swaddle and soothe your child. Think carefully about if and who you want to stay in your home to provide additional support during the first few weeks. Even though the thought of having house guests may seem daunting, you will be thankful for the extra help and ability to get some sleep. Feel free to employ their aid with feedings, baths and getting the baby dressed among other things.

Stow away a few luxury items for yourself like a candle, bath bomb or chocolates. These will come in handy when you’re feeling extra stressed and need a moment to yourself to rejuvenate. Lastly, remember to enjoy this time period and use it as an opportunity to bond with your newborn.

Posted on Leave a comment

Rainbow Coloured Rice

Rainbow Coloured Rice

Rainbow Coloured Rice:

Rainbow Coloured Rice is great for sensory play, and we just couldn’t wait to share the recipe with you!

Coloured rice is so simple to make, so little one’s will not only enjoy playing with the brightly coloured rice, but can join in the fun of making it too.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 Tablespoon of Vinegar
  • 1 Cup of rice
  • Food colouring (add a few drops until it reaches your desired colour)
  • Ziploc bags or a plastic bag tied up

Instructions:

  • Pour the cup of rice into the ziploc/plastic bag;
  • Add the vinegar and food colouring and then seal the bag;
  • Shake it up for a few minutes to get the colour evenly spread out;
  • Empty the packet of rice and colouring mix, onto a baking sheet and allow to dry.

…and that’s it! Now get ready to have some fun.

Put the rice on a tray, in a large flat bowl, or on a lap desk, and give your child spoons, different types of cups, jugs and bowls to play with, sit back and relax, while they keep themselves entertained for hours.

Images courtesy of Monique Kaye via Facebook

Cleaning up is quick and easy, and if you keep the rainbow rice stored in an airtight container, it can last an entire year!

Do you have any colourful or creative play ideas? Please share them with us in the comments below.

Posted on Leave a comment

Developing Creativity in Preschool

Developing Creativity in Preschool
Developing Creativity in Preschoolers
Photo Credit: MissMessie

Developing Creativity in Preschool:

Developing Creativity in Preschool enables young kids to better analyse and problem solve. Art supplies can help develop hand-eye coordination and the type of fine motor skills they’ll draw upon later for writing.

When your pre-schooler is messing about with paint or glitter, they’re likely to be more focused on the sensations and effect than the finished product. This is an important part of their creative development.

Here are three simple ways to help develop creativity in preschool, from setting up puzzle-solving activities like a scavenger hunt to how to communicate about their art.

Create a creative space

It’s important to find a space where kids can be creative and make a mess without you worrying about the clean-up afterwards. Cover the kitchen or lounge table with old magazines or newspapers. Then, once the messy work is done, you can roll them up and the space is as good as new!

Think about saving torn or old clothes to use as overalls too. That way, there’s no stress that kids will pick up on when they’re experimenting with colours or textures.

If you’re too short on time for clear-up, try another sensory experience, like playing with shaving foam or a sink full of bubbles.

Be supportive

This can be counter-intuitive, but drawing alongside your kids can actually frustrate them about their own progress. This is because children try to represent what they see before them, as they don’t yet have your experience or fine motor skills! Express your support by asking questions about their process. Ask your child questions like “Why did you choose those colours?” or “What were you thinking about when you made this line?”

Be supportive, even if you’re not sure what the finished piece actually is. Kids are happy with learning and exploring ideas in their own time, and art can be a way of working through their experiences. That tree might be oversized, for example, because it represents something really important to them.

Furthermore, being supportive about their creativity provides a relaxed atmosphere where little imaginations can run free. This can be important in raising kids’ self-esteem!

Get experimental

Sometimes, injecting a new idea or material is all it takes to get kids’ creativity flowing. Here are three simple ideas to try:

  1. Go on a walk and collect objects, then take them home for kids to draw, touch, paint or model. Make it clear that they don’t have to represent the objects literally, but can use them as a source of inspiration.
  2. Set up a scavenger hunt. This could be at a local park or just around the house. Creative challenges such as riddles will get their brains going and may even stimulate kids to create their own scavenger hunt.
  3. Create a food art collage. Present kids with different kinds of pasta, lentils, and any other suitable dried food you have to hand. They can then decide for themselves which to incorporate into a collage and stick down on thin card or stiff paper.

Hopefully these ideas will get you started. Your pre-schoolers may also have some great ideas that you can try out, so get stuck in and get creative!