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  1. Another "stuck inside" day? We see you over there: Restless kids fidgeting on the couch, the clock ticking slower than usual, and you’re fresh out of ideas for things to do. We have your back with this list of the best indoor games you might have not already tried. They are simple to set up and so much fun you’ll want to play no matter what the weather is like outside.

    Screen Shot 2020-03-03 at 21.46.001 . THE FLOOR IS LAVA GAME

    All kids hop from couch to cusion to book to anything strategically placed and possibly even make a flying leap across the living room to the corner chair.  Aim - Hop from one surface to another with one thing on their minds… The living room floor had turned into boiling hot lava! - you can't step on it.

    This is a great game and has some major motor movements and sensory play components!

     From jumping, leaping, hopping, rolling, and crashing, The Floor is Lava is a fun and creative way to encourage movement and sensory motor play, both indoors and out!

    2. PAPER DRESSES

    Screen Shot 2020-03-03 at 21.54.21When I was younger, I used to love making dresses out of toilet paper for my barbies. One great afternoon fun idea is designing dresses for your child, with your child, out of paper. I was inspired by Mayhem a beautiful girl who makes dresses completely out of paper (check her out!)  I've tried it with my daughter Meels, and although unfortunately I don't have pics of Meels in her creation as part of the fun was also busting out of it and ripping it, the verdict was a big thumbs up! 

     
    3. BALOON CUP SHOOTERS

    This super simple idea will definitely keep them entertained for a few hours! 
    All you need are plastic cups, balloons, tape and ping pong balls. Watch this video to show you how it's done :) 

    Step 1:  Cut the bottom off of the paper or plastic cup, line it with tape to avoid rough edges.

    Step 2:  Tie end of balloon. 

    Step 3: Cut other end of a balloon.

    Step 4: Stretch balloon over wide end of cup.

    That’s it!  Now watch the kids have a blast shooting ping pong balls around the house.  And if you don’t have ping pong balls, you can use marshmallows, beans, pom poms, and even paper balls.

     
    4. PUZZLES AND BOARD GAMES

    Puzzles are always a perfect idea! Exercise those creative, cognitive and problem-solving muscles with a good puzzle. Children learn to work directly with their environment and change its shape and appearance when they work with puzzles besides, 

    • Improved Memory. Solving puzzles helps reinforce existing connections between our brain cells. ... 
    • Better Problem-Solving Skills. ... 
    • Improved Visual-Spatial Reasoning. ... 
    • Improved Mood. ... 
    • Lower Stress Levels.
    cluck-cluck-the-fox3Board Games are a great way to boost their self esteem teaching them about teamwork, patience, and how to win and lose gracefully, board games can actually benefit kids' brains and language development and sharpen their focus and develop their competitive drive. 

     
     
     
    5. PLAYDOUGH

    Anyone who knows me knows well enough that if there is one thing I can't stand doing is cooking. However, when I discovered this simple and super recipe on how to make playdough, I never bought again! Make it with your child, and let them experiment with colour, glitter or even some scent. I usually add vanilla or lavender oil to it and it comes out smelling beautiful. 

    • 1 cup water
    • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
    • 1/2 cup salt
    • 1 tablespoon cream of tartar
    • Food coloring
    • Saucepan
    • 1 cup flour

    Directions

    1. Combine water, oil, salt, cream of tartar, and food coloring in a saucepan and heat until warm.
    2. Remove from heat and add flour.
    3. Stir, then knead until smooth. The cream of tartar makes this dough last 6 months or longer, so resist the temptation to omit this ingredient if you don't have it on hand.
    4. Store this dough in an airtight container.

    Screen Shot 2020-03-03 at 22.43.506. BOTTLE DOLL FAMILY

    A fantastic way to upcycle a used bottle is to paint it and stick some silly funny face, drawn by them and bow tie on it and you've got your first doll!
    Add some buttons and and wrap around some material, you've got your second! 

    Different sized bottles are great! Each and every individual bottle doll with join the fantstic bottle family. 

     

     

      

    7. INDOOR TREASURE HUNT

    Easy and fun!! hide random objects and make a list for them to find them  ..  or make a list for them to find something red, something round, something soft, somerthing that smells ..  Make it more challenging and write clues instead of a list. 

    8. FREEZE! with a challenge. 

    Choose some of your kids’ favourite songs and turn up the volume. Ask them to dance until the music stops. When it does, they have to freeze in whatever position they find themselves in – even if they have one leg up. To make the game more challenging, ask the kids to freeze in specific poses: animals, shapes, letters or even yoga poses!. Toddlers in particular love this game.

    9. BLIND FOLDED FOOD TASTING

    Prepare random food items in different bowls. Something spicy, something sweet, something chewy, something soft, something hard etc .. (cheese, bread, chocolate, sweets, ketchup, mayo, mustard, fruit, vegetables) blindfold your child and let them taste it and guess what it was they have just eaten. I always put more sweet and happy stuff. With more then one kid it is always a laugh when one is blindfolded and his hand hovers over the spicy or cheesy bowl. 

    10. CLEAN UP

    Cleaning up CAN be fun for them! My kids love playing this game and in the end - we have a cleared room, exhausted kids and a happy me! win / win! This is best if played with more then 1 child - or + you! 
    Each child gets to choose one song. Once their song is being played it is up to the that child to clean up their toys and more as fast as they can. They need to pick up and clear & put away at least 20 items / pieces before the song finishes. Whilst that song is playing, the other kids relax, sing and dance. 
    When the song is up - the next song comes on and it's the next childs turn to clean up. 
    This is always done with a promise that what ever is left to clean up will be done by me. 
    Clean up will never be a chore again! 

    In other words, play matters, let the children PLAY! 

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  2. Mid Term! I just can't believe it really! time is just flying! Christmas was only just yesterday and here we are heading into another long weekend (some of us a whole week) of holidays :) This time to celebrate getting through the first half of a scholastic year! (we really do find every excuse to celebrate right? )
    At least that's how I see it .. a Celebration! - We've got through October, all the newness that comes with it - new class, new routine etc .. We've gone through Christmas and along came January .. I've yet to meet someone who actually loves January! For most of us, exams follow, which gives us another reason for this Mid Term to actually Celebrate, unwind, unplug and play, together. 

    Here are some ideas I've thought of to get us through the week smiling and re group. 

    Let's go outside!  Location - Buskett

     

    Outdoor-Adventure-Hunt

    - Take them on a hunt, this magical place provides plenty of space to run wild and be free. Prepare a treasure hunt - tell them to find objects such as - an orange flower, a butterfly, something fuzzy, a clover, a castle, Ben Elf even! 
    Have a look at this great treasure hunt list that I've come across. Click here for the link to print

    Store all their treasures found in a treasure case like this one to take home and create a work of art with (all you'll need is glue and paper ... or tape! 

    Screen Shot 2020-02-12 at 12.23.11- Have you ever seen a nature head? Or a Nature Doll ? Once home, prepare printables, easily found and let their imagination run wild with their treasures found. 

     

     

     

     

    - Take a walk .. relax .. look up & shape the clouds and just re group and connect. 


    Screen Shot 2020-02-12 at 12.21.04- Find the tools to make paint brushes. - Twigs, leaves, feathers, orange peels etc .. these make great sensory brushes for a later painting session. 

    - Gather leaves, twigs and pebbles and create a masterpiece onthe ground. 

    - If you're lucky - Jump in a Puddle!! there are amazing puddle formations in Buskett. Take a change of clothes (inc. socks!) and a towel for after and just let your kids go wild! their smiles will be worth it!

     

    Sometimes, the weather isn't on our side, or there is other work to be done. 
    Indoor play opens up a world of imaginative play and Social Play

    Screen Shot 2020-02-12 at 12.59.31

    Puzzles are always a perfect idea! Psychologists have determined that a child's brain development is influenced significantly when a child acts on or manipulates the world around him or her. Puzzles provide that key opportunity. Children learn to work directly with their environment and change its shape and appearance when they work with puzzles besides, 

    • Improved Memory. Solving puzzles helps reinforce existing connections between our brain cells. ... 
    • Better Problem-Solving Skills. ... 
    • Improved Visual-Spatial Reasoning. ... 
    • Improved Mood. ... 
    • Lower Stress Levels.

    - Lava - place cushions all over the floor and tell your kids that they cannot put a single toe on the floor as it is "lava". Their mission - They need to get to the other side of the room and pick up the prize (could be a book, or a toy, or a sweet) without touching the floor. it's not as easy as it sounds! but it is lots and lots of fun!! 

     - Downtime

    For us, downtime are those days when we are tired & less motivated. This is the time where we move on to reading, puzzles, board games or we watch a movie or series with popcorn and snuggles and hot chocolate . - our current favourites are Eddie Eagle, Ace Ventura Pet Detective & Full (& Fuller) House (on Netflix)

    In other words, play matters, let the children PLAY! This Mid Term - Play together 

    Screen Shot 2020-02-12 at 13.03.07

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