Create an exciting obstacle course to enhance your child's development in numerous areas for balance, coordination, alertness, body awareness, strength and endurance.
When its cold outside and you’re stuck inside more often, it gets hard to come up with ways to entertain your children. Why not build an obstacle course. It will provide endless hours of fun and challenge them, as well as help them (and you) to stay active during those days when it’s just too cold to venture outside for a walk or game of catch.
Make the obstacle course simple at first and change the stations as they're mastered. If you like, you could time each go, to see who is the fastest and if you can get faster each time.
Here are a few ideas to get you started on building an indoor obstacle course:
1. Crawl under or over a row of chairs.
2. Crawl under a string stretched between two chair legs.
3. Jump into and out of a Hula-Hoop five times.
4. Walk on a rope line.
5. Throw a beanbag/soft toy into a laundry basket.
6. Walk while balancing a beanbag on your head.
Please reinforce positional language with your child as they move across the obstacles
“You’re crawling under the table.”
“You’re jumping in the hoop”
“You’re climbing over the chairs.”
If you have a garden or outdoor space and the weather allows, then use what you have to create your course.
You can jump in hoops, balance on planks or low walls, crawl through tunnels or under garden tables, climb up a slide and then go down, make stepping stones from buckets or old bricks and throw or kick balls.
Do you have a favourite toy?
Is it a teddy, rabbit or doll that you might take to bed at night?
Maybe it’s a car or train set?
Do you like to build with Lego or building blocks?
Maybe you have a favorite superhero or princess that you make up stories about.
There are many different reasons for having a favourite toy.
Draw a picture of your favourite toy and colour it in, thinking carefully about the colours you will need.
Talk to your grown up about why this your favourite toy.
Have a go at writing the toys name.
Please encourage your child to have a go at mark making and ask them about the marks they have made. It may look like scribble to you, but children need to understand that their marks convey meaning.
Below are the stages of handwriting that children go through.
Maths - Shape, Space and Measure
Hide and Seek
Can you play Hide and Seek just like Spot did?
You will need at least one other person to play this game with you.
Get your grown up to count to 10 whilst you hide.
You could hide in a cupboard, under the bed or behind the curtains.
Then they need to come and find you.
When they have found you it's their turn to hide.
Please use positional languge during this game .
"You have hidden under the bed"
"You are hiding inside the cupboard."
"You were behind the curtains."
Expressive Arts and Design
Make a puppet
Can you make a Spot the dog puppet?
It could be a puppet on a stick or from a paper plate.
Draw a picture of your dog onto a piece of card.
Cut around it and colour it in.
Stick it to the top of a lolly stick or drinking straw.
Maybe you could make puppets of some of the other animals in the story?
Can you hide your puppet?
Maybe it could hide behind the chair, under the table, or inside the toy car.
You could use your puppets to retell the Spot the dog story.
Knowledge and Understanding of the World
Exploring Wet Weather
Outdoor play and nature play are so important to young children.
Children love the rain, on the whole, and love to play in the rain.
As long as they have the right clothing there is so much fun to be had, playing in the rain.
Children are 100% washable, and can be towel dried. So go on, wrap them up warm in waterproof clothes and get them out there, even if it's just for a short period of time.
Why Playing in the Rain is Benenficial
- It helps with a child's motor skills and balance ability. They are now investigating, exploring and enjoying a slippery world. This has a different set of physical challenges from a dry world.
- When they are playing in the rain it helps them connect with all the weathers nature has. This helps improve their general connection they have with nature. They see and experience that it is different from a dry day.
- They are exposed to a different sensory experiences. There are so many new sights, sounds , smells and touches to be experienced.
- They are learning about water through their chosen method of playing in it. Never underestimate how much children learn through their play.
- They learn to look after themselves in these different weather conditions. They learn to care for their clothing and protection, as well as anything they are using out in the rain.
Activity Ideas for Playing in the Rain
- Sing and dance in the rain.
- Play with toys in puddles (waterproof toys)
- Go puddle jumping.
- Make nature boats and see if they float in the puddles.
- Catch rain drops on your tongue.
- Build a dam.
- Make a mud pie by mixing mud with rain water.