My Plan to Be a Better Mom: Activities

It’s taken me a while to get to the next part of the Be a Better Mom series. Why? Because I’ve been trying to be a better mom! I’ll be posting about materials separately, turns out. I feel so inspired to get my creative juices flowing and my hands working as I think about activities. I’ve been taking time to look through blogs of some mamas doing fun stuff with their kids. Much time has also been spent brainstorming some magnetic board activities for my daughter. There’s also been gathering materials and making things!

So far, all I’ve done is made one magnet set and start another magnet/felt set. One is a button shape/size sorting activity — 4 colors, 3 sizes. Unfortunately, the first set has already been scattered from off the fridge through multiple rooms (before pictures were taken). I am thinking now that future magnetic sets should be meant for the board only, just so there are more buttons to play with than are stuck under the fridge.

The other set I started is a color/fruit sorting activity where she could “pick” apples, bananas, plums and/or pears from the tree and put them in a basket. I was hoping to go apple picking soon so it makes some experiential sense. Now I am thinking, that I might make just an apple set with numbers to 10 on them. The other day she was insisting I count to ten, and she’s been into numbers lately.

There are a number of activities I’d like to do more of with my daughter to make our time together engaging, exploratory and playful.

Sensory activities are where she’s at right now. Sensory tubs are one idea; so far I have thought of waterbeads, leaves, and beans. I’m waiting for fall to advance a bit for the leaf one. Then I want to collect leaves together and bring out a fall leaves/tree magnet set I hope to make. I also liked this loud-quiet shaker idea and this smell matching activity.

Pouring is what Montessori would call a “Practical Life” activity. She is into pouring for sure. Any parent of a toddler knows that spilling and playing with liquid are fun times. My daughter seems pretty good at pouring from big things with help, but I want to get her a kid-sized pitcher from For Small Hands so she can pour things herself. I hope to put this pitcher with some of her small glasses on a table so she can get her own water and snacks. (Time to modify the snack station of old?)

Finally, it is feeling like time to move from chopping to cutting. She loves to cut with her wooden knife and food set. I have also helped her cut with a big butter knife. I’d like to find something like a small butter knife to help her cut things like banana. Her cooking role can take a new turn, and she will have more to offer and do in the kitchen.

Eventually, I’d like to get into the light box and other fun from the links below, but I’m trying to focus on things I know I can follow through on and actually accomplish. I still want to share the awesome ideas I’ve run into through my online travels…

Here are some play-based learning blogs/sites I found to keep an eye on:

Warm Rain Walk Treasures

Ideas by Category:

For the road: Toddler Activity Bags

Light(box):

Sensory:

Magnetic Board:

Rock Play:

Outside/Messy: Play at Home Mom Outdoor Play

9 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Amparo Stetina on September 22, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    Have a I ever mentioned how much I love your blog??? So helpful and inspiring!!!! You rock Sheila, keep them coming!!!
    Much love and respect,
    Amparo

    Reply

    • Amparo, if only you lived here because I would love to spend more time together inspiring each other. I hope you try some of these things and let me know how they work out! Thanks for the feedback. : )
      sheila

      Reply

  2. […] to say, necessity is the mother of invention (and creativity). As I said in the latest Better Mom post on activities, I want to create and offer more hands on learning/play activities. Here are three things that came […]

    Reply

  3. […] made a developmental play resource list in Better Mom activities post. (There are some easy and awesome ideas in there!) She still likes to play with the open and close […]

    Reply

  4. […] and buttons –sensory bin […]

    Reply

  5. […] to take the baby out in messy weather (my baby boy is one month old!). I decided throw together a sensory bin I had been thinking about for a […]

    Reply

  6. […] To be clear: I believe children can play independently through their own direction without special “tasks” or “toys,” but I think a mama/caregiver who needs a few minutes can get her needs met with well-designed activity.  […]

    Reply

  7. […] be more present and positive when I am with her and to keep her rested and active and engaged with activities. I’ve worn her in the sling when she asks if I can and nursed her more on demand than I was. […]

    Reply

  8. […] sensory play is vital for child development, for a sensory activity we got out the homemade play dough (no cream of tartar needed!). Natural homemade food coloring […]

    Reply

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