Written By: Monique Larocque
Well... some of us have been home the past few weeks with our kids, trying to make sense of our new reality, trying to explain and help our children understand and figure out how to keep them engaged and learning.
Firstly, when I returned back to work after my mat leave in January, I was sooo sad. However, being home with my little guy (20 months old) is a blessing but it makes me appreciate his educators so much for keeping him busy and happy all day!!
So here are a few things we have come up with at home that have been a hit and has kept my little guy busy.
Creative art. We have painted, drawn, glued, squished and made a delightful mess!
Sensory play. We have made sensory bottles, played with kinetic sand, made play dough and made a water table using a deep foil tray!
Look and find games. I have hidden gems, balls, coloured papers, stuffed animals, you name it for him to look and find!! (We made binoculars out of toilet paper rolls and ribbon to explore with)
Tear and rip bin. Filled a bin with old wrapping paper, flyers, scrap paper. Toddlers love to rip.
Fine motor snacks! Haha I have stuck a piece of spaghetti into play dough and given my little guy 10-15 Cheerios, he puts them on, takes them off and eats them.
Colour sorting. I laid pieces of coloured paper down and gave him coloured popsicle sticks and I said the colour and he sorted the sticks and put them with the right colour. ( I’m going to try this again with Pom poms and feathers)
Baking. He loved helping to measure, stir and pour!!
Build forts! Oh boy have we ever built forts, we have built a village!! Each area was for a different activity, one area was our reading corner, one area has all the stuffed animals and blankies for cuddles and one had a ton of balls.
Read, read, read. We love our books and we love to read. Get into character!!
Music. We love dancing, we have made instruments from recyclables, and we love making up new dance moves!
Play in your backyard. Fresh air is important. We have limited our outdoor time to our backyard just to be extra safe. But go for a walk, get some air with your family.
Go for a drive. Sometimes we just need a change of scenery so we go for a country drive, the little one naps, we have a chance to connect or just breath and then come back home. (No stops)
We have this opportunity to further connect and be present with our children. Yes, some of us are working from home, and the struggle is real. Try and find your balance, and even if you get to do one special thing together a day, it makes their new reality that much more special.