Every parent has those activities that they enjoy doing with their kids. For me, I have several. Some of my activities require me to leave the house, some are loud, and some are quiet activities. Whether they provide me snuggle time or giggling time, these activities top my list of things I love doing with my kids. They all have common characteristics of relationship building, development skills, and fun!
Here’s 5 of my favorite activities:
1) Reading: who doesn’t love a little snuggle time? I take this a step further with my four-year-old by asking her to find “sight” words and page numbers. We’ve started reading chapter books with her and she tells me about what’s happened in the story. My two-year-old has started memorizing parts of the stories so I make him say his part. We also find the “can you find?” game while reading. I love taking a quick trip to the library to browse though the books. Yes, we’re the family with about 20 books surrounding them and we only check-out two a piece, sorry librarians out there!
2) Cooking/baking: my kids love the kitchen and I love sharing this with them. Having them help me cook/bake helps to keep them from being underfoot or into things and is a great learning tool. We talk about the different ingredients, we count, measure, and pour. Having them help me helps them with math skills and fine motor. We also get to talk about entry-level science too- fruits, veggies, meats, and why all these foods are important.
3) Dancing: Music, music, music! My kids love to dance especially since I’ve enrolled my four-year-old in dance. Since they love it so much, I jump in and Bust-a-move with them. It’s great exercise as I bounce around and be silly. In fact, stellar dance moves not require because the crazier the dance the more they love it. Dancing helps develop creativity as they are coming up with their own moves. It also helps with confidence as I give each of them a chance to independently show of their moves. Its great physical activity for both me and my kiddos. So I say turn up the tunes and get active!
4) The Lying Game (otherwise known as Did You Know?): Ok, so the name of this game may not seem like a good idea, but it really gets a lot of giggles and it helps with creativity. How this game works is I look at my daughter who is wearing a pink shirt and say, “Did you know your shirt is Green?” She laughs and says “No, its pink”. Then she comes up with one of her own. This game is great because it promotes creativity as we come up with new “little lies”. The other bonus is I can play this game while standing in line at the store or while sitting at the dinner table. My son is slowly catching on, well, that what we’re saying is funny anyways. I’ve started including him in it, but he pretty much repeats whatever was last said.
5) Church: This may seem like a strange one, especially for anyone out there that doesn’t attend church. But there are so many benefits of church, besides the whole salvation thing (which is very important). Church helps to not only teach a spiritual aspect of life and helps them to learn about God and what it means to be a Christian but it also teaches many other lessons. At church, they learn there is a time for everything. We stand and sing (loud time), we sit and listen (quiet time), and we sit quietly praying (even quieter time). We have times that we say memorized prayers. As they get older they will work on memorizing those prayers. For now, they learn how to listen, be patient, and about all things spiritual. They learn about God’s Grace and about how to talk to him. Church helps to not only teach those important religious factors but teaches them other important lessons.
Well, that’s my list. What are your favorite activities? What do your children learn from them?