Thursday, May 31, 2012

Toddler Activities

My daughter is turning 19 months old in a few days, and her attention span ranges from 30 seconds to 30 minutes depending on the activity.  I find that having a list of go to activities helps in many ways.  First, lining up a bunch of things to do lessens the amount of times she is bored, which in turn keeps her from getting into trouble.  Also, keeping her active ensures that she is tired for naps and night-time.  My daughter acquires and practices different skills, and I learn more about her abilities, likes, and dislikes.  Of course, we gain invaluable bonding time and have a ton of fun!

The following list helps with many developmental skills and abilities including; developing imagination, gross and fine motor skills, language, memory, problem solving, and sensory development.

Arts and Crafts
-Non-toxic crayons and paper
-Homemade playdough (recipe to follow) and cookie cutters
-Toddler stamps
-A cup of water, a paintbrush, and colored paper (it introduces your child to using paintbrushes without the mess!)

Quiet Time
-Read a book to your toddler
-Have your toddler read a book to her dolls
-Sing songs
-Finger plays

Time to move!
-Pretend to be different animals together (Dog-walk on all fours and bark, Cat-arch and round your back     saying "meow," Snake-slither on your belly and "ssssss," Bird-walk around the room with your arms extended out to your sides pretending to fly, Frog-squat down and jump up while saying "ribbit," Duck-waddle and quack etc)
-Do the "hokey pokey"
-Dance to your favorite music
-Teach basic yoga poses (mountain-stand really straight with hands at your sides, tree-bend one knee and place the sole of that foot on your inner thigh, or wherever you can on your standing leg, staff-sit with legs straight out in front of you and together, bound angle (I re-named this one "butterfly" for my daughter)-sit with knees bent, and soles of feet touching)

Pretend Play
-Take care of a "baby" doll together (feed, rock, put to sleep, change diaper)
-"Talk on the phone"
-Use pots as drums and teach "loud" and "soft" by banging
-Build a tall tower and knock it down

Outdoor Time
-Plant something together
-Blow bubbles

-Go on a nature walk and talk about things as you see them
-Water play (kiddie pool, buckets, watering can, squeeze toys etc.)

Play-dough recipe
1 1/2 cups of flour
1/2 cup of salt
1/2 cup of water
1/8 cup of cooking oil
1 Tbls vinegar

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.  Knead until soft.  If you need to make the dough more pliable, just add more water.  Store in a zip-lock bag.

If you want more details on any of these activities, please do not hesitate to comment, I promise to respond.


  1. What about sidewalk chalk! Also love the yoga positions! Pretending to make stew is fun with pots and pans too.

  2. I actually had the little one help me a few times! We made muffins together, and she was able to put the paper linings in the tin, and pour chocolate chips into the bowl!