Pudding Painting : Toddlers are famous for getting into everything. It seems like there’s always cleaning up to do when there’s a toddler around. But if you can put up with a temporary mess we have a stellar artistic project to enjoy with your tot.
Let your toddler try their hand at finger painting, only substituting instant pudding for finger paints. Ideally, you will cover the art space in paper for obvious reasons. You can use the same materials, such as plain paper, construction paper, unused paint brushes, and ratchet up the fun by using cake sprinkles. I definitely suggest putting your kid in “play clothes” for this one… a mess is guaranteed, but half the fun is that the kids can actually eat the “paint.”
Spend some quality time with your toddler making finger puppets. Locate printable templates online or you make them from scratch. If making finger puppets from scratch, you’ll need the following supplies:
- Construction paper, paper bags, white paper or felt.
- Glue and/or tape
- Markers, colored pens, or other markables
- Add-ons, such as pipe cleaner, plastic eyes, fabrics, cotton, glitter, etc.
Using colored construction paper, trace the outside of your toddler’s finger to create the correct size for your finger puppet. At the base of the finger silhouette, draw two 3/4″ lines at a 90 degree angle to the finger. These will be taped in the shape of a ring so your puppet stays on your little one’s finger.
Now comes the fun part! You and your toddler can draw your characters on the face of the finger silhouette. Add color with additional paper, markers or pipe cleaners. Make a finger puppet family or make your favorite cartoon characters. The sky is the limit with this project, so get creative!
Grocery Shopping Game
Create a grocery list of items needed for your household. Hold up your carton of milk and ask your little shopper if you need more milk. Do the same for other favorite foods for which your toddler is emotionally attached. Once the list is created, head off to the local grocery.
Make sure to go through the fruit and vegetable isle and say the names of the most common produce. Have your toddler repeat the words after you. While at the grocery store, let the toddler choose a fruit and/or vegetable. Use their choice as a dish in your next meal.
Take a shopping trip to the hardware store or a convenience store.
This springtime activity involves planting garden seeds in flowerpots. Or for those with an outdoor garden, designate a plot for your child. Choose the variety of seeds you wish to plant with your child. You’ll find an assortment of vegetables to be best. After the seeds are planted, let your toddler have the daily routine of watering the flower pot. You’ll soon be enjoying eating vegetables with your child!
The activity can be started other times of the year, but the parent will need a bit more of a green thumb. The flower pot should be brought indoors when there is a danger of frost or freezing.
Edible play dough
Creating things out of a blob of play dough is a great way for toddlers to use their imaginations and make something all by themselves. An even better idea (we think!) is to make a play dough that is edible… how fun!
The recipe for this edible peanut butter play dough is:
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup corn syrup
1 1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
1 1/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
Make sure to play with your toddler on this activity. Make funny animal faces or make mommy and daddy replicas. Anyway you do it, it’ll be a yummy and fun activity!
Sand Cereal Artist
You’ll need empty glass baby food jars, Fruit Loops cereal, closeable baggies and a piece of paper.
Start by having your toddler separate the colors of fruit loops. Once separated, put them into separate bags. Have your toddler crush the cereal until it makes dust.
Next, take the different colors of “sand” and pour into the empty baby food jars using the piece of paper as a funnel.
We love this activity because it’s safer than using sand… it doesn’t matter if your toddler puts this “sand” in their mouths!
Find The Treasure
Kids love the idea of hidden or buried treasure. Let’s face it, finding something valuable by searching and digging is something even I enjoy! Here is a great activity for your little pirate!
For this treasure-finding activity, you’ll need a large quantity of some sort of small, dense object… we suggest rice, beans, pasta or Cheerios. You’ll need to fill a big container with any of these. Within the container, put various prizes, toys, candy, stickers or something similar. Then, have your kid go on a “treasure hunt” to find these objects. They will love the surprise of finding these treats!
Creating A Ziiiippiinn Zoo
It’s a jungle In here! Animals are a favorite of many toddlers. What kid doesn’t like zoos, animal shows and stuffed animals? Kids also love learning about animals. Here’s a great project to help do just that.
You’ll first need a branch from a tree. Once you have a branch of your desired size, search for pictures of animals in magazines, newspapers or online. Print your animal pictures and cut them out. Next, tape the pictures onto the branch, or leaves, if there are any.
Display the decorated branch where it is visible to guests. Have your toddler show off their “jungle” and name the animals that live there. This will definitely be a project for your toddler to be proud of!
The game is played by substituting bubbles for basketballs. The object is to try and get your bubble over the goal line, which can be a couple strips of masking tape a few feet apart or at both ends of a room.
The children are divided into two groups. Each one is given a container of bubbles with bubble blower. One child blows the bubble’s while the teammates fan them with a piece of cardboard. All teams work towards their respective goal. Be sure to take turns, so that each child gets to take a turn at blowing bubbles. If the bubble bursts, the team has to start over again.
Art Of Veggies
Gather an assortment of colored vegetables such as cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, carrot sticks, broccoli, celery and red pepper. Prepare a space for your toddler to create pictures or faces with the vegetables. After they’re done, take a picture of the finished project.
Once completed, the ‘vegetable artwork’ is a source of healthy snacks for your little one.
Story Time In A Can
Reading to a toddler exercises their imagination, introduces them to reading and allows for quality time spent with mom or dad. This toddler activity is a fun alternative to reading from a paper book. Here we show you how you can make a book using stackable cans!
For this project, you’ll need four or five cans of different diameters, so they’re able to stack into one another. You can start with a soda can, then a soup can and so on. You’ll also need a book (which can be cut up) or supplies to create your own “book.”
If using a book, simply cut out pages and paste them onto the can. Preferably, you would keep the text on the pages, so you’re still getting reading practice. Start pasting the pages onto the cans, starting with the smallest can first. You can add more cans if necessary, but we suggest four or five.
If you’re creating your own story, use construction paper, clip art, crayons, colored pencils, stickers or other art supplies. Have your toddler help you come up with the story. Be careful with sharp edges on the cans. We suggest using a safe edge can opener that eliminates these sharp edges.
Once completed, you can tell your toddler a story using your story book cans. Or they can return the favor and tell you a story. Once practiced up, your toddler can take the show on the road and entertain friends and family!
As with most toddler activities, the toddler will enjoy themselves most when the parent becomes animated and talks excitedly. Use these skills and reinvent some basic yard tasks. Your little yard worker will love helping you.
Ask your toddler if weeds are good or bad. When they say bad, yank the weed and throw it over your shoulder! Ask if flowers are good or bad. When they say good, pet the flower and say ‘good flower’ with a big smile. Get creative and reinvent other yard tasks as well. Where does this branch go? In the trash!
So when does the fun end? If your toddler’s attention begins to wander, it’s time to stop.
A white sheet is placed over mommy and daddy and your little ghost buster is introduced to their first friendly ghost. Mom or dad hams it up by dancing, singing and delivering the toddler their favorite treats!
Once mommy or daddy is through with their ‘ghostly’ performance, it’s time for the toddler to take center stage. Let them wear the bed sheet and scare the parents!
An ice cream cone is decorated with chocolate, candy sprinkles or other edible decorations. Once the cone dries, the cone is filled with candies.
You’ll need ice cream cones (traditional or wafer), melt-able chocolate and edible sprinkles. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Dip the tops of the cones in the chocolate. Immediately apply the edible decorations to the cone. Place the cones in the refrigerator until the chocolate has cooled and hardened. Once the cones have cooled, fill the cones with small candies. We suggest packaged candies of different lengths. Once the cone is filled, wrap the top with party wrapping or saran wrap and have your toddler present as a gift or party favor.
The toddler gets a child-proof mirrors and parents can use glass mirrors for this activity. Show your tot their reflection, reflections of their toys or reflections of mommy and daddy. Making plenty of facial expressions will help you get your toddler’s attention.