Believe it or not, there are a number of items you already have in your home that your kids can use for crafts, sensory play, and even learning. You can achieve the same level of fun we have here at preschool without ever spending a dime! Below, we’ll provide some examples of some great at-home, DIY fun.
Use Your Senses
Sensory play is super important for the littles. Just like it sounds, sensory play involves activities that stimulate any of the senses and encourages exploration, learning, and creativity, just to name a few! The Breakie Bunch family is super into sensory play in both preschool and daycare, so let’s give you some examples of some things you can do at home.
- Even little babes have the ability to explore their senses! You can lay them on different textures such as grass on a beautiful day, an extremely soft blanket, even lay them under a black and white mobile. The stark contrast of black and white do wonders for their sight!
- There can be a little crossover in age for this one. Got pasta in your kitchen? Throw some dry noodles in a bowl with some other toys or dried foods. Let them feel the different textures.
- Recycle those old water bottles! Let them dry out, then throw dry rice in one, beads in another, even just a liquid or sand. Have them give it a shake-shake and hear the difference in sounds.
- DIY Moon Sand. It sounds like it’s an absolute disaster, but we promise it’s not. It takes two ingredients you likely have in your home and is super easy to make. Let the kids feel it in their hands. If that’s not your speed, you can always get them outside to play in the sand and dirt. A little messier as well, but awesome on the senses.
No, you do not need to have a fully stocked craft cabinet, nor be at preschool to have an awesome craft experience. There are so many things that can be done at home, likely without even having to stock up on any supplies. If you have cupcake liners, coffee filters, food coloring, a little bit of kid-safe paint — anything really — you can make a craft.
- Grab some paper, tape it down to a placemat or newspaper, squirt some finger paints down and let them go to town. An amazing masterpiece will be created.
- Coffee filters, markers, and a spray bottle. Let them color the coffee filters and then spray with water. Watch the colors bleed and make amazing patterns.
- Got some paper plates? Perfect, because we have a craft for you. Llamas are all the rage now and you can make your very own using stuff just around the house. Even parents might enjoy this one.
Education is Key
Of course, when your kids come to daycare, we make it a focus to educate and get your child ready to be big kids in a big school. And you can help pave the way at home, too! Children are wonderful in that they can learn from everything around them. Let’s use that to our advantage.
- Little ones as young as six months can learn sign language! Though not all may have the hand control that young, most babies can start learning this language quite early in life. How simple is that DIY? No tools required!
- Color by numbers. Not only will this help your child to understand steps in solving a problem, but it will also teach them their numbers and colors. Just print a couple of sheets and have at it! You can do this too, parents. It’s quite stress-relieving.
- Take masking tape and tape it to your table in a bunch of crazy directions. Kids will then have to peel off in order. This encourages critical thinking. And may give you a moment for coffee.
- Dump out all your change on the table. Have your kiddo sort the change into separate piles based on the type of coin. You can even count them all up together. It helps focus on those math skills!
- A fun game needing only a set of dice. Roll the dice, subtract the smaller number from the larger number rolled. Or add together. You can make it into a fun game and since the dice don’t go higher than 6, it makes for manageable math facts at home. If your older child wants a challenge, roll twice! Roll number one, add together- that is your first number. Roll number two, that is your second number. Add or subtract as you would before!
There is so much you can do at home with the kids to encourage play, discovery, even math. With some creative thinking, you can use almost anything in the house that’s kid friendly! If you would like more suggestions from our daycare and preschool teachers, we would love to help you out! Just reach out to us here.