Keeping the toddler entertained

Let’s face it, toddlers are intensely curious, and that curiosity often results in some exploring that we would prefer didn’t happen.

Of course, hovering over your toddler and watching their every move would be the ideal way to keep them safe and out of trouble, but since that isn’t really realistic, it’s probably better to come up with some great ways for your little one to entertain themselves that don’t involve unrolling all of the toilet paper, sticking toothbrushes in the toilet, or giving the cat a nice rub-down with the butter. 

Below we have put together a list of some of our favorite toddler activities that are quick, easy, and allow you to feel like you have hacked parenthood.

Baggie fingerpaints

Fingerpainting is like a dream come true for most little kids. Rubbing their fingers around in all that colorful mess really is a thrilling experience. However, when you aren’t in the mood for cleaning up the disaster area that your dining room becomes after a quick fingerpainting session, this method will have you feeling relieved and giddy all at once.

To set up, simply put several splotches of fingerpaint in a gallon-sized zipper baggie. Zip it shut and use packing tape or duct tape to ensure the baggie doesn’t come unzipped during play. Hand the bag over to your little one and encourage them to smash and squish the paint to their heart’s delight. 

Clean-up time

You’d be surprised just how excited a toddler or young child can get about helping with the cleaning.

Take advantage of this strange excitement by handing the toddler a wet wipe—or even a cloth and a spray bottle of water—and letting them go to town on the hard floor, base boards, or legs of furniture. While the cleaning probably won’t be as thorough as you would like, it’s great practice for the future and it will likely keep your little one entertained long enough for you to get dinner on the table. 

Inflatable ball pit

Kids love ball pits. Unfortunately, the ball pits found at public playgrounds just aren’t very safe or sanitary. Instead of risking it at the local fast food joint, make your own ball pit at home using an inflatable pool filled with plastic balls, which can be bought in bulk. Your child will adore this new play area, and you’ll be able to get something accomplished.

Hopefully these ideas will give you time to check off some items on the to-do list, or even give you some downtime to sip a cup of coffee. However, it is important that you don’t get too wrapped up in what you are doing and miss those precious moments when your little one is still little.

Be sure to take a minute to capture the fun activities your child has such a good time doing so you can keep a record of them in your StepsLife app and look back on them lovingly for years to come.