It’s hard to keep up with a toddler, and even harder to keep them amused long enough to not have to keep up with them! Here are some ideas on how to corral the little one in long enough for you to breathe!
New toys – No, of course don’t go buy new toys. But put a bunch of the toys away where the toddler can’t get to them, and when he’s bored with what he has, then take new ones out and put the current ones away. It’ll keep the baby stimulated, and keep you from wondering why the floor is covered with toys he’s not playing with!
Hide and seek – A toddler is just at the right age when hide and seek can be a fun game. You don’t have to go far, even just behind a chair or an ottoman will be enough, and they’ll giggle when they find you. If they are old enough to understand, they’ll have fun “hiding” too.
Tag – Your toddler with think you’re just the funniest thing ever if you’re willing to chase them around the house and let them chase you. It’s a great game to play outside, too, and they’re sure to take a nap not long afterward!
Bath time – If they need a bath, get them while they’re bored! If not, then they might have fun just sitting in the empty tub playing with their bath toys. They’re toys that they don’t see that often, so they find them more amusing than the teddy bear that’s been sitting by their bed for weeks.
Make faces – Really, sometimes toddlers are that easy. The funnier faces, the more they’ll laugh, and it’s not that energy-sapping!
Puppet show – Use some stuffed animals, and put on an impromptu puppet show. They might want a puppet for themselves, or just to watch, but regardless your toddler is sure to have fun watching their stuffed animals take on a life of their own.
Snack – Again, a simple thing to occupy a few minutes, but maybe you have something around that’s oddly shaped or that you can play some sort of game with. That can help with small motor control for the toddler, and can help you keep them in one place for a little while!
Cooking – No, the toddler won’t be making a quiche anytime soon, but they might have fun putting their own apple slices in a bowl, or putting a sandwich together. Give them a length of yarn and some Cheerios and show them how to make a necklace.
Go outside – inside the house is a very familiar place for a toddler, so she might like to be out on the lawn, or taking a walk. You can go to a local park, or library (they often have play areas for small children), or even a quick walk around a pet store to see the fish and birds.
Singing – Music has been proven to have wonderful effects on kids, so why not start early? If you’re tired of the kid’s albums with classic songs, then try something like the Barenaked Ladies’ Snack Time, a kid’s album by a popular Canadian Band – you’ll love it, and so will your toddler!