So this is the first time I’ve really felt inspired to write all year, mainly due to planning an impending wedding which was promptly cancelled at the 11th hour due to COVID-19 restrictions! Suddenly, I’ve found myself with some spare time now I’m not organising table plans or making decorations and favours.
It has been nice to spend a bit more time with my little man now there’s no commuting and no nursery. Its taken a bit of adjusting and thinking of new and creative – and preferably free – things to do with a 2 year old around the house. So here are the games for toddlers we have found ourselves playing during this government lockdown…
Cars in a bucket
Cars, paw patrol figures, really any little toys fit the bill here. We’ve been racing cars off the end of the couch, trying to get them into a bucket placed not far away. The Paw Patrol pups all jump off. Pretty simple, doesn’t require anything more than existing toys and a bucket, and helps with motor skills/aim and accuracy etc. It keeps our wee man amused for ages and breathes new life into his every day toys.
Making our own soft play
One of the big killers of having a toddler in lockdown is that they dont understand why they cant do things like go go soft play (or anywhere else for that matter) like usual. Its heartbreaking trying to explain and watching the little man get upset, so we started to improvise. We had a pop up tent and ball pool that kept Travis amused when he was about 8-18 months, and which hasn’t been looked at in over a year. I’m so glad I didn’t give it away as its been a good soft play alternative. Other things to substitute are cushions and pillows on the floor with boxes to climb and hide in. A paddling pool with toys in makes for a good ball pool alternative too.
Everything is better in a den isn’t it? We’ve made dens from things lying around the house like blankets and chairs and then proceeded to play in them, sometimes with his favourite toys, sometimes watching cartoons on his tablet. Other times we’ll incorporate the other games like hide and seek or even have a picnic in it.
We’ve also started moving on to making dens for his cars out of building blocks. The possibilities are endless!
Another little game we’ve made out of regular toys is sorting. It’s maybe a little of my OCD coming through, but dont things just look nice when they are lined up or put in some sort of order? We have been playing at sorting things by colour and by size. Then we count them – how many blue cars are there? How many little building blocks and how many bug ones? This counting and organising is about as close as we get to home schooling!
Hide and seek
Travis has just begun to understand the concept of hide and seek, though he doesn’t like doing the counting and waiting. He also loves to go and find hidden items, whether its toy figures, a missing jigsaw piece or an errant dummy!
This is also great practice for any easter egg hunts that may be happening over the long weekend.