Days 16-20: Week 4 Roundup
It's Week 4 of my free resource, 25 Days of Toddler Play!
25 Days of Toddler Play is divided into 5 weeks, with 5 activities per week. You can do any of them at any time, this is just how I chose to introduce the program.
Because I'm a former teacher, I introduce the supply list before the week begins so you can make sure you already have everything you need.
The program also includes one or two toys per week that I think are high-value for the cost and are shoppable on my Amazon storefront.
Day 16: Slot Game 💌
This one comes from the queen herself, Susie at @busytoddler 👑 If you love my toddler content, you'll love hers even more - she's been in the "momming-of-toddlers" game way longer and basically cornered the market on any activity involving painters tape. Of which there are many!
Anyway, this activity is great because it's so customizable to the age of your child. Older toddlers do great with the oatmeal container and playing cards combo, while younger toddlers who may crumple, bend, chew, or otherwise destroy a deck of playing cards (not that I have experience with this.......) can use popsicle sticks. If you've been following along, you already have the extra wide popsicle sticks from past activities, so those work perfectly.
You can use an oatmeal container, a shipping box, or a shoebox. Just cut a slit in it (or a few slits), and you're good to go!
Let me know how your kiddos like this one - have fun!
Day 17: Using Tongs
This is another activity that you can really customize to your particular child. The idea is to have them practice using the tongs - great for fine motor development. If you have an older toddler who has mastered tongs, you can try having them use chopsticks!
Examples of objects you can pick up with the tongs: ice (our favorite, you all know by now how much our kids love ice!), plastic easter eggs (tis the season!), small animals, matchbox cars, carrot sticks, really anything you can think of.
If you want to give this activity a little twist, try placing the objects in water. It's more difficult to pick up objects when they are floating! Remember that, whenever we do water play, I set the kids up over baking sheets and put a waterproof tablecloth under them to catch the spills.
Have fun with this one!
Day 18: Practicing Scissor Skills
Is there anything scarier than a toddler wielding scissors? Even still, it's important for them to learn how to use them CORRECTLY and SAFELY.
One tip I learned from my sister in law (a former preschool teacher) is to have your toddler keep their thumbnail facing up (as opposed to holding the scissors with their wrist rotated like my son was doing) - it helps keep them safe to have good form. And, of course, ALWAYS cut AWAY from your body.
When my son started with scissors he would go all the way around a piece of paper making single cuts - it looked kind of like fringe when he was through! Now he draws lines and cuts along them. Next will be cutting out shapes! It's fun to watch him grow in this skill.
Safety points to teach: how to walk with scissors, how to store them, and NEVER cut anyone's hair!
Day 19: Trace & Decorate
I loved art as a child, and always looked forward to sharing this love with my kids. During the long days of pandemic lockdown, I tried coloring with my son dozens of times, but he just wasn't into it.
Until, we got out the BIG paper roll.
With a paper roll, you can do pretty much anything: stamps, the acrylic paint sticks from Week 3 (day 15), markers, crayons, markers, chalk! Because they have to use their whole body to make art, it's a very different activity than coloring on a sheet of paper.
My kids' favorite thing to do with long paper is have me trace their bodies, then draw in their features & decorate their clothes.
I can't wait to see what your kids do with this one! Have fun!
Day 20: Scratch-Off Art 🌈
✨Shop this post here. (contains affiliate links)
✨Read the blog post about scratch-off art here.
I can't recommend this activity enough! I've been doing this with my two kids lately and they both LOVE it.
So simple. So elegant. You literally just give them a sheet of the paper, something sharp-ish (this kit comes with wooden dowels and stencils- always supervise & teach safety when working with sharp objects), and let them go at it!
Zero prep, zero cleanup, zero mess. That's my kind of activity. Plus, I got a little therapeutic time in doing my own sheet!
What I love about scratch-off paper:
🌈 It's more gross-motor oriented than coloring, which my son has never been into. But, my fine-motor oriented daughter still loves it, too.
🌈 If your kids are prone to destroying crayons and markers, this is pretty immune to that. All they get is a wooden stick and their sheet of scratch-off paper. And this kit comes with stencils, too, which has been fun.
🌈 Because the sheets are worth more than regular paper, it's a good conversation starter about being mindful and planning your design.
🌈 I don't have to worry about anyone accidentally drawing on my table, or the walls, or the floor, or themselves...
🌈 You can bring it to restaurants! It doesn't make a mess, so it's great for traveling.
Let me know how this goes with your littles! Have fun!
Stay tuned for Week 5: The final week! And don't forget that you can sign up for my email list to get these activities delivered straight to your inbox!