Last month I wrote some tips on how to handle a younger child while having an activity with an older sibling.
Today I would like to introduce a simple activity we often use when we are out and have some time to wait for something or someone. Or we’ve forgotten to take our activity kit (I will talk about it next time!).
This simple activity engages both an older sibling and a younger, helps develop fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Plus, it is just fun.
This activity is best for restaurant/coffee shop waits where you have some spare time but not many means to entertain an impatient child.
What you will need:
A piece of tissue paper
A couple of cups (or small containers)
How to conduct this activity:
1. Have either older sibling or both tear the tissue paper into pieces
2. Older child can help roll the pieces into small balls.
3. Have both children put the tissue balls into 1 cup.
4. Either let the younger child pour the balls in out of the cup, or pour them out and put back one by one. The more “advanced” variation is to let the younger child use a spoon to put the balls from one cup to another.
5. At last – let them add a bit of water inside and stir to make a soft mush. They can grab and the mush and kneed with their fingers and palms. A little messy but not the dirty mess!
This activity will occupy the children for good 15-20 minutes (the estimate with my children, who are 5 years old and 20 months old).
This activity is best supervised as the younger children tend to put tissues in their mouth. When we use this activity, I have time to take a little “breath” and avoid unnecessary frustration the little one may get, from being bored in a constricted environment.
If you prepare ahead of time, you can bring cotton balls with you, or colorful crepe paper to use instead. You can also bring a piece of paper and a stick of glue and make this activity with the children: Crepe Paper Art.
I hope this activity helps you fill the time while waiting for something or someone! Till next month!
Varya @ Creative World of Varya
Varya blogs at Creative World of Varya (http://creativeworldofvarya.com) about nurturing creativity, multilingualism, multiculturalism, craft, art, cooking, parenting and character education. She is a mom of 2 (soon to be 3!), an early educator, perinatal fitness and baby massage trainer, currently residing in the South of China with her family.