Often as parents we use television as a way of entertaining our children when we aren’t available to do activities with them.
We as parents need to realize there are a wide range of activities that children can do on their own that will help their development and keep them entertained as well as making your parenting easier.
- Construction toys – Young children love building towers of blocks and knocking them down. As they get older this develops into more complex building and in turn older children can make complicated projects out of Legos and eventually even learn to fix computers or program them to do different things.
- Art and Crafts – Many parents assume that arts and crafts have to be supervised because of the mess. In fact there are many types of activities that children can be left alone to work on starting from simple coloring in with younger children, to jewelry making and card making for older ones. Not all activities need to involve lots of glue and paint and mess.
- Computer – A lot of parents these days associate being online on the computer with being bad for children. However, they don’t need to be playing games or chatting to their friends on social networking sites. They can use it for research or learning programming instead.
- Helping Around the House – this doesn’t mean your children have to be slaves. However, they may enjoy some projects in the house such as learning to bake or doing simple home improvements with their parents. This can give them valuable life skills and keep them occupied at the same time.
- Playing Outside – this seems obvious to some people but it is surprising how many children are reluctant to play outside and don’t even know how to. Parents might have to go out with them at first, especially if they are younger, and it is important to have rules about how far from the house they are allowed to go. If you buy them a bike, scooter or skateboard they can have great fun. You can often get these secondhand, but if you don’t have much money a jump rope or a football may be enough especially if there are other children around for them to play with.