You may be heading towards a significant birthday, and perhaps you’re compiling a bucket list of must have experiences to do before you hit that milestone...? But why wait until you’re older?
At Kidunk we’re passionate about play and so we’ve compiled this fun check-list for the under 5s – how many has your little one done already? Come to think of it, have you done them all? If not get planning some new adventures now!
1. Do the roly poly
One of our favourites, and there’s so many opportunities to do it. Forget your inhibitions, lie down at the top of a grassy hill and roly poly all the way down. It’s exciting and gives you those tickles in your tummy, but you’ll be giggling all day long so be careful, it can be very addictive.
The best bit is it can help a children improve their spacial awareness and core stability. And yours for that matter!
2. Let’s go fly a kite
A thrilling activity that’s beautifully simply! Children will love to see their kite flying in the sky, watching as the wind catches and sends it flying into the air! But it can take time, patience and practice. But, it’swell worth the effort and they get acquire new skills along the way such as hand and eye coordination, gross motor and Kinaesthetic awareness. You can also discuss meteorology and how your need the right conditions to fly the kite well.
3. Make a tree-mendous tree face
The new Buzz word is ‘Green Play’ which we wholeheartedly embrace here at Kidunk. So, when you’re out and about find the squelchist, muddiest puddle and the biggest tree and slap some mud onto the tree trunk! Use leaves, twigs, moss or whatever you can to craft eyes, nose, mouth and hair… ta da a tree face! All great stuff great for imagination, creativity and dexterity.
4. Build a den
Childhood memories are made of this! Dens are the bestest thing ever, you can hide, cuddle up and get cosy, eat a snack or pretend it’s a rocket on its way to outer space! If you’re outdoors, use a tree as your base and use twigs and leaves to create your very own hide or picnic shelter. On a cold rainy day re-create the den at home using blankets, sheets, chairs and pegs! It may be fun bits also encourages problem solving skills, working as part of a team and listening and acting on instruction.
5. Make a wormery
A simple see-through plastic jar, make some drainage holes on the bottom and then fill with sand first, then a layer of compost and then soil, collect your worms and wait and watch, feed with potatoes peelings, left over fruit etc but not fat or meat as they really wont like that! This is fab way for little ones to learn about ecology, our environment and how to look after creatures!
6. Pebble hide & seek
This is becoming a big craze at the moment, simply paint your pebble and once dry go play hide and seek! Find a hiding place for it, maybe your favourite park or woods, if found, the idea is that the seeker will either hide again for someone else to find or take home as a little gift.
This is great for children’s imagination, experiencing anticipation and wondering who may find it. We like to think its a small act of kindness too, as they are leaving a gift for someone which in turn will give that child a sense of wellbeing.
7. Have a mud bath
On wet days, go out looking for the best puddles and the deepest mud piles, and go for it, take scores and set challenges, best squelch or splash, how far did it go? Who’s the dirtiest? Give yourself and your children permission to get downright filthy and wet.
Great one for getting the gross motor skills going, balance and negotiating and assessing the dangers around them, how deep is that puddle!
8. Toast a marshmallow
And when all that energy is run off, then what could be nicer than to sit in front of a camp fire – anytime of year and toast a march mellow together!
This is a nice one to introduce basic science, how the marshmallow changes when placed on the heat but more importantly eases them into fire safety and how to look after themselves while around the camp fire and how to put it out once you have finished.
9. Sleep under the stars
Maybe one for your summer bucket list, but camp out, in the garden or in the wild and watch the stars twinkle and shine. This is such a lovely way to introduce children to the stars and solar system and the joy of being out in the open and a great opportunity for children to tune in their senses, such as listening to the noises around them, the smell of the grass and how their eyes adjust to the changing light.
10. Snow balling
Every child loves snow and it’s almost impossible to get them to come in the warmth on a snowy day, despite their rosy red faces and freezing cold hands and feet! But, if you’re lucky enough to have plenty of snow encourage them to throw snowballs.
It’s actually really good for their gross motor skills and hand and eye co-ordination, balance and resilience! But you might want to duck out of the way!