Do you have a toddler or preschooler at home who has long removed the word “nap” from his vocabulary? We do! Our little 4 year old is growing and has so much energy that sometimes it’s hard to get him to settle down for quiet times. The girls have times during the day where they do quiet activities in their rooms. Our little ones will on occasion do activities with them especially sticker book activity which he loves. Other times, he’ll just play, noisily that is.
Note: The kids have had activity bins for a while, especially our now 6 and 8 year old girls. Although our preschooler has had a bin at 3 years old, he didn’t use it as much as the girls do. So I thought that I’d update his bin with just a couple more and different items. That way, when he does “quiet” time with the girls, he’ll have a few things to keep him busy. It may be for 10 minutes but hey, it’s still something. I’ll take it!
So I’ve put together a little activity bin for him to do during downtimes, especially now that all the kids are on summer break. A toddler or preschooler bin does not have to be complicated. You only need a few items of interest that may keep them occupied for like 5 minutes. Don’t add things that your kids do not enjoy or else he/she would not be interested in using the bin of items. For example, if your child does not like sitting still to color, then don’t add coloring books and things to color. You’ll find that you have wasted time putting a bin together that he doesn’t enjoy. Further, don’t add too many items. It may lead to a feeling of overwhelm for your little one.
Here’s what’s in our 4 year old activity bin:
- A coloring book, crayons – learning and practicing colors
- Stampers – stamping images & learning colors
- Two favorite picture books – learning ABC & Animals
- Lacing activity – fine motor skills
- Favorite animal toys – encourage free imaginative play
- A sticker book – learning placement (optional)
Coloring books – If your child is into coloring, add a few coloring books to the bin. For a period of time, our little one was not into coloring at one point but then it seems like he’s back.
Stampers – These little no-mess stampers can help your little one stamp away without making a mess.
Books – Since your child most-likely would not be reading words I recommend adding a picture book or two to his bin. Make sure they are small enough so your child could look through them themselves.
Animal Toys – Why toys? Because they are little kids who tend to get bored fast. When they are bored with the books they can play imaginative play with their toys. Just ensure that they are not noisy toys.
Here is an example of the sticker book our 4 year old loves doing alongside his sisters. They all love doing those – I usually find them at Walmart. Recently, I’ve come across a few variations of sticker books that the kids are loving.
It’s a simple bin with just a few activities. I hope this helps you if you have a preschooler or toddler in your home who may benefit from a simple quiet activity bin. Don’t forget to tailor the activities according to what your child loves.
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Do you have a four year old or a toddler who may benefit from a simply quiet time bin? Would love to know your thoughts in the comments.