When was the last time you and
your kids rolled around on the floor together laughing yourselves silly?
If you're like me, it may have been a while.
Sometimes I get caught up in
household chores, give errands a priority or
answer the phone when I know I
should let it ring instead of making time for my two daughters. It's not that I don't
play with them; just the opposite is true. It simply seems as if I'm trying to
fit them into my daily
schedule when in fact I should be scheduling my day around them. I used to be a planner. I would
try to organize activities that I thought my girls would learn something from. I'm
now much more free and spontaneous with them and I've discovered that at their
respective ages of four and 20 months that this is the type of play they
Here are some suggestions
on how you can be more spontaneous with your children:
1. Play "Chase Around The
House" - Kids love to be chased, especially if you're making a
roaring or growling noise while you're doing it. You'd be surprised how
fast their little legs can carry them. This exercise is sure get you're
heart rate up and tone your glutes as well!
2. Have a Pillow Fight - Make sure
the pillows are small and not too heavy. Throw cushions work best for
this activity. Lay a few ground rules, such as not hitting in the face
or on the head and when somebody yells: "stop", then stop.
3. How Many Times Can Each of You
Hop on One Foot - Again, a great cardiovascular activity for you and the
kids. Alternate feet and vary the directions you're hopping in. This is
good for your children's coordination and learning left and right,
forwards and backwards.
4. Pretend You're Animals- Play a
guessing game of what animal Sally is by the sounds she makes and the
way she moves. Children love to imitate animals and can imitate various
animals from a young age.
5. Tickle Each Other - When you've
run out of ideas, then a good old-fashioned tickle fight is the answer. Again, don't
tickle too hard and when
someone (possibly you!) yells stop, then the tickler must stop. At
our house, this game
always ends with kisses!
These activities take little time
to play and benefit you and your children greatly. They are highly interactive,
involve a lot of laughter and take no preparation. They also let your children know that
you enjoy being with them and that they make great playmates.