What To Do With Little Ones Now That The Daycares Are Closed

Here I am, trying to come up with ideas of things to do with my grandchildren while their parents work from home and the preschool is closed. I want to help but I need to have a plan. Just sitting on the floor and playing with them works for a good deal of time but they enjoyed being out of the house with with other little friends too and now that’s not possible. So, this grandma works to bring something new and fun in my bag. I’ve been hitting up Pinterest hot and heavy these days. So, I decided that now might be a good time to try to share my ideas to help other people who might be looking for something different to fill the child’s day.

Believe it or not it’s spring!!!

Now that my grand babies are 2 and 3 years old, I don’t have to worry about things going into their mouth so much but activities can’t be too involved because they lose interest really fast. So this idea is a combination of art, literacy, and fresh air. It was great at spreading out our conversation about spring over most of the morning.

First Project

Water color paints (just yellow at first, then green added later) were set up at a covered table along with watercolor paper which is a bit heavier and paint brushes that were a bit wide.

First add a few black dots on the paper. This helps a child follow the direction to fill the paper with yellow.
Next, give them a cup with just the color yellow. Deep cups keep it from spilling out all over the place. Then tell and show them how to paint “a straight line”. Keep repeating straight line and focus them on each black dot.
Don’t worry if the straight lines are not straight. Just let them enjoy the paint. If you keep pointing to the black dots, that will help them fill the paper with color instead of painting in one wet circle.
When they tire of the yellow, then wash out the brush and offer them green. Again, demonstrate drawing “straight lines”. Tell them that they are now drawing the stems of the flowers. Don’t worry if the lines are not straight or look nothing like stems. It’s all ok. When they finish this, it’s time to let them dry, go play for awhile.
This is a good time to go for a walk

Here where we live, there are no flowers blooming yet but we walked and looked and listened for signs of spring. We heard 1) birds singing, 2) a machine chopping up downed branches. There were few people (as expected right now). Then we saw 3) sprouts coming out of the grown that are sure to be flowers soon, 4) one bird up in the tree, 5) several squirrels busy running away from us.

And on this day, we also went by business doors and found the sign the said either “OPEN” or “CLOSED. The best part was that this is something we have never done and it allowed us to actually talk about the businesses more. For instance, there was an “OPEN” sign on a shoe store. My grand daughter asked, “What’s a shoe store?” I never would have thought to talk to her about this store. Another one that was “OPEN” was a Vet’s Clinic. We talked about how good it was that there was a place for sick pets to go.

Back Home And Ready For Part Two

Now the painting is dry and now is the perfect time to let them do part two.

Now it’s time for play dough. The direction was to 1) make a ball, 2) then poke a hole in the center
Then place a ball on each black dot. and celebrate the beauty of the daffodil. It won’t be long. The flowers will bloom even if we are still isolated in our homes. The flowers will bloom.
Time for lunch and curling up with a good book

After they played as long as they wanted with the play dough, we washed up and had lunch. Then it was time to just quiet down and share a good book. I chose this one:

This book is about the seasons of the year. It’s done in rhyme which is my favorite. The pictures were so detailed and allowed us to compare what we saw on our walk with the spring pages. And then we dreamed awhile about all the fun we are going to have when we can be outside every day playing.

And just like that the morning was over and it was bedtime. So many things went well with this activity.

  • The activities were just as long as they wanted them to be, no longer
  • No one was frustrated, left out, or exhausted
  • Prep for this project didn’t take hours
  • We didn’t watch TV

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