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Creative Fun with Household Goods

  1. #1
    sherwes is offline Registered User
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    Creative Fun with Household Goods

    Hi ladies, I am looking for creative activities that my 19 month old son can do at home. My son just loved it when our neighbours let him play with piles of rice dyed different colours. He loved mixing the colours and pouring the rice in and out of different sized containers. He also really enjoyed playing with a big bowl of frozen peas (don't ask! I was trying to keep him occupied while I cooked!!). He loved the cold feel of them and the task of moving them individually from one bowl to another.

    I am pretty creatively challenged so I am stuck for other ideas. We have crayons and felt tips etc but he doesn't seem too excited by these. What fun activities do your toddlers enjoy at home? The messier the better (we have a balcony so can hopefully confine the mess).

  2. #2
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    These are the things my son enjoys now (he is also 19 months)

    -Finger Painting--I bought a set of finger paints at Wise Kids in Causeway Bay--these are great for making gifts for people as well
    -You can put whipped cream on a baking sheet and let him sit in his high chair up at the table and rub his fingers through it--it's good because it's edible
    -On the balcony, I fill a bucket of water up and put lots of different containers and toys in it and let him experiment with them. One time he crawled right into the bucket with all his clothes on which was pretty fun.
    -My son loves to collect rocks as well so when we go out for a walk he picks up rocks and dried leaves and brings them home--they are his prized possessions. We have a little pile gathering outside our door and someday I'd like to do a craft project with them (painting the rocks to look like bugs etc)
    -I often pick songs from YouTube and play them through our stereo system. I experiment with different rhythms and types of music and encourage my son to dance with me--I'll give him his toy maracas and he has fun keeping a beat. It's interesting to see his taste in music.

    Those are the things we do. I'd love to hear other interesting creative ideas for this age group too.

  3. #3
    sherwes is offline Registered User
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    Thanks. I love the whipped cream idea. Will try it tomorrow!
    We also love You Tube. There is great footage of diggers, fire trucks etc although today my son was loving the video clip to Beyonce's "Put a Ring on It". He obviously enjoys a good dance move!

  4. #4
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    That's so funny, Sherwes. One time, I just put on some reggae music (I don't often listen to it) and my son was so into it. I've never shown him clips of machinery but he probably would like that a lot.

  5. #5
    Bumps Guest
    Here is my post from another thread that may help? You may have already read it though?......



    Here are a few suggestions to keep parents and children occupied – some may/may not be age appropriate for your child:

    Sorting beads, buttons by shape and colour – if you don’t have these, substitute with different colour socks – they have to find their partners

    Playdough is always a hit. But please either make it yourself and dispose of it when finished or only use the store bought ones a couple of times and then buy a new lot. You can not clean playdough and it carries germs. Why not add some glitter or essential oils to your playdough to make in more interesting?

    Get children interested in cooking. Even if it is as simple as them using a cookie cutter to cut shapes out of their sandwich.

    Now is an appropriate time to teach children about germs. There are a few good books out there. One is called “I Don’t Want to Wash My Hands.” By Tony Ross. A good way to explain germs spreading is to pretend to sneeze in you hand and them show them your hands where you have placed some coloured glitter…. “Ew yucky germs.” Then start touching them – and they will get the ‘germs’ (glitter will transfer) - then go and wash hands to get rid of the germs.

    Another good lesson is to bath a baby doll together – talk about hygiene.

    Google colouring pages and get them to choose a picture of their favouite character.

    Now is a perfect time to go through their clothes and see what fits and what can be donated to charity.

    Children love playing with shaving cream – you could add paint to make it more appealing. You can writer letters in it, draw pictures in it – etc. The best idea I know is to use those aluminium cooking pans. Buy a couple of big ones – they are great for sensory and messy games. You can always make ‘music’ with them by banging them together and they don’t hurt and are re-usable.

    If you have a balcony – have a picnic out there and they can bring along a ‘friend’ (a special teddy) – interact with the teddy as if it was real. They love that. Gets them conversing and using their imagination.

    Other balcony ideas include blowing bubbles – you can add paint to the bubble liquid and get them to blow the bubbles onto paper to make a bubble painting – look really good. Also, you could use one of your aluminium trays and fill it with water, paint and dish detergent. Using a straw blow to create lots of coloured bubbles. Then place a piece of paper on top gently and remove and you have another way to make bubble paintings.

    Children love playing with uncooked pasta, beans – put them in your aluminium tray and give them a plastic spoon, a plastic cup and another empty aluminium tray for them to transfer the pasta and beans across. Good for fine motor development. Rice is another good sensory tool but a good idea is to have a small vacuum cleaner handy. And try not to stress if they make a mess. If they are enjoying it – great. It can all be cleaned up!
    Other sensory things they love to play with include: coloured rocks from the live fish stores that you put in tanks, shells, Styrofoam, packing bubble to pop the bubbles, cotton balls and cornstarch mixed with water and paint – this is a balcony activity – messy but they love to feel the way the goo goes though their fingers.

    Get into the habit of story time – make it for example 10 am. This gives them the habit of looking at the clock and gives them the sense of time.. Read them a chapter a day – for example my favourite is all Enid Blyton books!

    Make a habit of singing and movement time “oh, look at the clock – it is 11 o’clock – it is singing time.’ Sing some songs – make some props or get them to act out the song. Dance – great way to get rid of energy.

    Get them to pretend to be animals and you have to guess what they are.

    Make a surprise box – use an old shoe box and cut a hole in the lid big enough for their hand to fit through as well as some of their favourite toys. Tape up the box and decorate it. They put their hands in and have to guess what is inside.

    Another balcony idea is paining, leaf rubbings – go for your morning walk with them and collect some leaves that have fallen and when you get home place them under paper and rub with crayons – looks good – you can see the details of the leaf – you could also paint a rock and stick on googly eyes and make a pet rock. Handpainting, feet painting.. Get them to decorate their name. Show them how to mix primary colours to make other colours.

    Buy them a disposable camera and teach them how to take photos. Get them developed and make a scrap book. They love this. Take their camera when you go for walks or are doing projects like mentioned above and get them to take some photos.

    Blow up some balloons and play with them.

    Play hide and seek with them. Or hide something and they have to find it in the house.

    If you have the space create a cubby house out of lounge cushions and blankets – a huge hit!

    Get them interested in food preparation – make pancakes for example and show them how to measure how much milk you need. Get them to help mix.

    Give them a tape measure and with supervision show them how to use it. They love to go around the house and find things that are bigger than other things…….Measure how tall they are and get them to compare.

    Teach them opposites – big/small, happy/sad, day/night etc.
    Teach them propositional words “Put Teddy on the table, now put teddy under the table. Put teddy in the box, beside the box – you get the idea.

    Plant some seeds and watch them grow – you could use a bean – or even an onion or potato that has been hanging around for too long and watch it transform.

  6. #6
    sherwes is offline Registered User
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    Thanks Bumps - these are all great ideas. Can I ask where you buy your craft supplies - glitter, playdough colouring etc?

  7. #7
    Buckeroo is offline Registered User
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    You can get all of these from Artland in Wanchai, although most stationery stores will carry these, too.

    Great ideas, Bumps. Thanks for sharing!

  8. #8
    Bumps Guest
    No problems! I get my bits and bobs from the Wanchai markets - there are a few stationery stores there and toy shops too - they stock the playdough I use.

    PS: that was meant to say prepositional words... LOL

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