With winter upon us and outside time therefore limited, it can be challenging to keep kids engaged in active play. Don’t let having to stay inside more due to weather translate to excess screen time for your little ones. It is important to keep young children engaged in creative and active play and here are some tips for doing just that- even if it’s rainy out!
- Encourage imagination with everyday household items
- Cardboard boxes to draw on and build a spaceship, empty containers to stack and make a castle, old linens to build an indoor fort – the possibilities are endless and allow your children to be both active and creative.
- Schedule a parent-supervised playdate with friends to mix it up and keep kids active
- Encourage active group games like Hide-n-Seek, Simon Says, Follow the Leader, or Duck Duck Goose.
- Have a dance party and let the kids pick the music.
- Get your kids in the kitchen
- Have your little ones pick out something they would like to make with you and allow them to participate in the baking/cooking process
- Make a list and a trip to the grocery store and have your little helper involved in getting all of the ingredients needed.
- Mixing is a great task for little ones that is simple and safe!
- Explain each step and celebrate the end product!
- Visit your local library or museum
- There are a number of great (often free!) places that are designed for kids to explore and use their imaginations – even if the weather isn’t ideal.
- Bring home a bunch of new books for your little one to read (perhaps in their fort!)
Staying indoors with little ones presents unique challenges! As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please consult your pediatrician. Here are some links from the American Academy of Pediatrics: