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What activities are you doing with your toddler?

(16 Posts)
wejammin Tue 06-Oct-20 12:12:14

I have 3 DC, the older 2 are at primary school and the youngest is 23 months.

He's at nursery 3 days per week and has a day with me and a day with DH midweek.

With the older 2, on our days off with them, we would go to the library, museums, soft play etc, when the weather was bad, and parks or national trust on nice days.

I'm ready struggling with things to do on rainy days in particular - the library is still closed, soft plays need a slot booking if they're open (his naps are a bit random so don't want to book and pay for him then to be asleep or too tired to enjoy it). The museums near me (Manchester) are only opening Wednesday - Sunday and I'm off on a Tuesday.

We've done all the local parks to death, and I never seem to get a NT slot for the right time.

I feel like we're getting stuck in a rut and he's always whining for TV or tablet in a way his siblings never did, a product of us both working from home during lockdown and needing to keep him entertained. I get out the Duplo/playdoh/brio but it's all a bit repetitive (for me as much as him).

How are you keeping your toddlers entertained at the moment, especially when the weather isn't great?

OP’s posts: |
Splattymouse Tue 06-Oct-20 12:54:01

We’ve been making dens in the lounge, baking biscuits and cakes, playing hide and seek, I tend to rotate toys too and bring some different ones out on rainy days. If there’s a break in the rain we go out in puddlesuits and wellies and have a run about. It’s hard work at the moment though!

Carycy Tue 06-Oct-20 12:55:12

My littlest one is two and a half and has an older brother at school. I have booked him on a forest school toddler group For one day up till half term. Do they have any of this in your area. I meet friends with similar age kids on different parks another day or at a soft play if it’s totally grim. And I tend to have a day in the house with a long pram walk on another day. To be honest I mostly leave him to potter when he is in the house. He likes getting free reign in his brothers room with the lego and he plays with a lot of brio and cars. I rotate the big toys out of the garage regularly in the play room so one week I will have all the happy land stuff out. One week all the paw patrol stuff out etc, etc.

Hardbackwriter Tue 06-Oct-20 12:58:56

Following for ideas! We have a very similar dynamic - one 27 month old, we each have one day a week at home with him. On Friday I ended up taking him on the bus to town just to go to a café for cake, which he thought was brilliant but maybe not what we should do every week! We do always go outside at least for a while but while he still enjoys this when it's pissing it down, I don't...

wejammin Tue 06-Oct-20 13:12:59

Forest school is a good idea, just wish I could find one where you pay weekly. Guaranteed if I booked upfront he'll get chicken pox or we'll have to quarantine or something. I don't mind at all spending some money on good activities but it's a luxury and I can't afford any wastage.
Definitely agree with toy rotation. I wonder if I'm bored of the toys because they're on their 3rd child, he will happily potter for a while. We used to get books from the library and our collection seems very small. Maybe I'll look in the charity shop for some new bits.

OP’s posts: |
Carycy Tue 06-Oct-20 13:34:02

I was about to suggests getting a bunch of toys from the charity shop. Kids just like something they haven’t seen in a while. Bit pieces of plastic tart go down well. You can just redonate in the future. One day I just found a bunch of random toys I had put in the loft and threw it down on the floor on a mat. Kept him entertained for ages.

Carycy Tue 06-Oct-20 13:34:30

Tat!!!! Not tart.

pinkbatwing Tue 06-Oct-20 18:22:44

DD is in nursery 3 days as well. I look after her the other two weekdays days, one day we do a music class and gym class, and on the other day we have a ballet class. Then we do a park or zoo (have membership) one afternoon. She naps fairly consistently every day after lunch. At weekends we go out with DH and do a different day out every week - we've booked up museums/attractions/galleries about a month ahead, as everything needs prebooking. We're in London, so have a big list of places we've missed during lockdown and we'd like to revisit, as well as a few places we've never been and would like to visit. Used to go to kid's theatre shows or concerts quite a lot at weekends, but none of those have restarted for her age group. When the weather is good we'll go across town to explore the different parks - we've got a bit sick of all the local ones, but there are loads in other boroughs which have different layouts and playground equipment which keeps it all interesting (for all of us).

I don't organise that many activities at home. We have a small flat and I find it better for both of us if we get out for the day. We do little bits of play before going out/between meals/bath etc, but nothing that needs a lot of prep/clearing up.

JoJoSM2 Tue 06-Oct-20 20:09:21

DS is 27 months. Most of his toys are in the cupboard and on rotation. We’ve been reading a bit, there’s Playdough, drawing, sticker books he loves as well as lots of puzzles. We also have a BigJigs train set that we re-do may different ways, sing songs etc.

We do get out even in bad weather - he just wears a puddle suit and I have wellies and a raincoat. I also find that he enjoys following simple activities like putting the laundry on or going into the supermarket together. He’s quite into trains at the moment so I’m planning to go on the train with him - nowhere in particular but just a couple of stations one way and then back for the experience.

VeggieSausageRoll Tue 06-Oct-20 20:15:36

We also have nursery 3 days a week, the other two days he has a swimming lesson one day, and does a little pre school dance class the other day.

CustardyCreams Tue 06-Oct-20 20:28:02

My DS, similar age, loves making/changing the beds, he hides in the covers and throws the pillows around. He absolutely loves playing with things in the wrong place - eg having a duvet on the kitchen floor with his teddies and some toy plastic food.

He loves playing with water and trying to scribble with crayons, but both end up messy and need close supervision.

Sometimes we play dressing up, he likes his sister’s hair clips, her faux fur jacket, ear muffs, my shoes, various hats and scarves.

We pop in to see grandparents nearby almost daily. Unless it is pouring, we can walk there after the school run which gives us lots of outdoor time. We stop and look at birds, walk through soggy grass, touch the wet bushes, jump in puddles, find acorns, watch delivery lorries, count red cars, whatever I can think of.

I often take him to the park or the Post Office, occasionally to the supermarket. He will sit in the drivers seat of my car pretending to drive for over 15 mins.

DipSwimSwoosh Tue 06-Oct-20 20:35:10

Walk into town, lunch, bus back
Duck pond
Coffee with friends
Garden centre
The Works for a new 99p sticker book
Friend's house
Train ride
Neighbouring town for a change of scenery and buy a biscuit
Drawing pictures and posting them to grandparents
Video calling people
Supermarket shop (for dinner, not a big shop, not doing that with a mask on).

wejammin Tue 06-Oct-20 22:42:12

Some good ideas here, thank you!

Sadly we're in a local lockdown area so we can't visit grandparents or friends houses, which of course we're sticking too but is getting more frustrating with the kids when the weather is crap.

OP’s posts: |
Duckchick Tue 06-Oct-20 23:38:07

I found monthly subscription boxes quite helpful for rainy days when I had both DC1 and DC2 at home. Although I could have done the research and come up with ideas it's a lot easier when someone else does the legwork. We had Toucan boxes but they are more for the over 3s. We also had Mud and Bloom which are more collecting stuff outdoors and using it to do crafts/ growing seeds focused which worked much better for my then 2 year old DD. I'm sure there are others as well.

Depending on your attitude to TV, there are toddler exercise programs on TV. Andy's wild work outs would probably work for a 23 month old, I think the others I'm aware of might be a bit old.

wejammin Wed 07-Oct-20 12:16:30

Thanks, we get the Toucan box for 6 year old DD, but DS2 won't sit down to do crafty stuff at all yet, even at nursery.

Definitely up for TV exercises, he loves Go Noodle and will dance along to Daniella Ballerina with DD. Will look up the Andy one, thanks.

OP’s posts: |
OhToBeASeahorse Wed 07-Oct-20 16:51:46

I have a 2 year old and I find this tough too - especially as he just doesnt have the concentration for bigger things like baking yet. We've done rice krispie cakes but that's about it. Im getting nervous about the winter as I'm due our second one any day now.

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