Use What You Have: Toddler Activities for the Whole Family

Let's hear from Lauren, an early literacy librarian! She wants to share some of the activities she's doing at home with her twin toddlers. Find things in your home (you don’t have to go out and purchase!) to make engaging activities for the whole family.


Dig it up! You'll need at least two bins and something to dig into (sand, dirt, popcorn kernels, birdseed, etc.) plus scoops, measuring cups or large wooden spoons. This is a great way to enhance math skills like measuring, comparing and using small muscles.


Hats off to you! Pretend to be at the beach with summer hats, at a baseball game with baseball hats, making a snowman with a warm hat. The activities are limitless! See if you have other objects around the house that will match the hat, like a pail and shovel, a ball or mittens.


Get through the tape. Kids love to get their energy out with large motor activities like an obstacle course! Chart your course with masking tape and get creative with what you have at home. Add chairs and a blanket for a tunnel, a laundry basket for the kids to “swim” in or hula hoops to jump into.


Build those (small) muscles! Help little hands develop their small muscles (fine motor) skills. Use what you have at home! Glue, cut or tear! We found extra pom-poms and a cardboard pizza box and made a masterpiece.


Sort it out. Use toys, balls, socks, anything and sort them all by color. Afterwards, count how many balls were in each bin! This is great math practice, plus kids have a blast sorting!


 At the toy wash. Get out some soap and water and get cleaning! This is simple and easy, plus, young ones love to help clean.

P.S.: You decide if you want to get the toys “dirty” before they clean them!


The great outdoors. Being outside is always a great way to engage with the whole family! Ride bikes (or trikes!), draw with chalk or just run! Challenge each other and make it fun for everyone.


What have you been doing to keep your children busy? Let us know in the comments below! You are doing a great job by just being you! Give your kids lots of love and time to be themselves. And don't forget to be kind to yourself!

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