View Full Version : Need suggestions from mothers of toddlers
May 8th, 2006, 7:28pm
Hi...I have twin grandbabies, Alex and Kailyn who are year old. My daughter has recently been having trouble at her daycare when they moved up to the one year old class. I won't bore you with the details. I know there is an adjustment period but something was not right. So, grandma to the rescue. She has been on a couple of waiting lists waiting for a spot at a new place, but until then I am keeping them everyday.
Do you moms have a schedule of activities for a one year old that would be easy for me to follow with 2 kids. I have a schedule they followed at day care but I am not sure of what kind of activities would be good for their age group. I would like to do something with them.
Thanks for any suggestions.
May 8th, 2006, 7:47pm
Make sure you have snacks lined up and ready, because nothing is worse than a cranky hungry kid who can't tell you they're hungry. Planning out their meals in advance is also important. And sippy cups with water, milk, or diluted juice. Are they still on bottles?
Weather permitting, outdoor time is always great. If you are within walking (or short driving, if you don't mind loading them into the car) distance from a park, that's an idea. I know it's harder with two at a time, but hopefully they will occupy eachother so your hands aren't too full. Also, if you don't want them to be overstimulated or throw around a bunch of toys, two things I highly recommend that will keep them busy and stimulated are books and musical instruments. Obviously when it comes to books, board books are best at that age.
Most kids that age will sleep for at least 2 hours in the middle of the day, so that is probably a good time for you to schedule any tasks you need to take care of around the house.
May 8th, 2006, 8:56pm
Do they nap once or twice a day? i would start with scheduling their nap(s). Next, schedule their meals and snacks. Now you have a framework to work activities into. Outside time is great as the previous poster said. Blowing bubbles is a favorite at this age! They can "paint" with water on a wall or fence. An inexpensive kiddie pool is a great way to introduce water play. Put something new in the water each day (sponges, cups, toy boats or animals, color the water with bath tablets, ect). There are walks, of course, too. Inside, you can "fingerpaint" with jello or pudding on a cafeteria tray, read baby books, stack blocks, explore the world of pots and pans(LOL), make and play with sock puppets, sing songs and clapping games, etc.
By the way, when I say schedule, i don't mean something inflexible you must stick to at all costs. it is the framework of your day, but not the ruler of your day! kids thrive on order and routine, but an inflexible rigid one can be just as bad. I suggest getting a couple of books on activities for toddlers and plan your week, loosely, in advance so that you know what materials you may need to get or prepare ahead of time.
Lastly, I admire you for taking care of your little ones! Of course you love them and your daughter, but it's still a big job and a HUGE responsibility! Best of luck to you!
May 8th, 2006, 9:14pm
My advice is also for a schedule. If I didn't have one we would all go crazy. I also agree with Faulkner by having snacks ready and sippy cups or bottles ready. Try graham crackers, gerber fruit snacks, small cut up grapes those are my kids favorites. Also get some board books ( the ones with the thick hard pages) with ABC's, shapes, colors, numbers etc... kids love those things, even if they won't listen to you they will still like to look at them. Mine also loved to roll balls around or play catch.I also have a bunch of those Little People play things that my kids loved. Also if you are going to let them watch some tv NOGGIN is great (if you have it) it has lots of educational kids programming and no commercials. HTH.I will post again if I think of more. oooh how about some puzzles with big pieces?
May 8th, 2006, 9:26pm
Thanks for the hints.
May 8th, 2006, 11:15pm
Boosbear--at that age, mine were still taking 2 naps. I put them down at the same times every day (I think it was 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.--but my kids were always early risers--up by 6 a.m.).
The times would vary, of course, if your grandkids sleep later--but my point is--I stuck to those nap times every day and made the rest of the day revolve around those naps! It gave me 2 breaks I could count on plus it gave structure to the day.
Your grandkids are lucky to have such good care from someone who loves them so much. Best of luck to you.
May 10th, 2006, 1:23pm
I agree on the naps.. keep them at the same time. For "fun" ideas there's a website familyfun.com that should give you ideas of projects, things to do, etc.
May 10th, 2006, 1:40pm
There are lots of books available at your local library that have games and activities for little ones.
May 10th, 2006, 1:43pm
My MIL runs a daycare...don't do what she does all day...sit them in front of the TV :mad2: (not saying you would its just a pet peeve of mine)
May 13th, 2006, 7:59am
look at yard sales for different toys once and while and new books... a new toy to learn with can always come in helpful you can always resell them so you don't get to many
music to dance to and bubbles to blow are also lots of fun... my 16 month to 30 month olds a work like to paint with water colored paper and a wet paint brush no mess and no stains on clothes it is great till they try to eat the brush or drink water but is still lots of fun. try some sensory thing like playing in jello, sugar free pudding or whip cream on the high chair table or little outside table you can hose off....
if you need more ideas on what to do let me know i can pm you what i did that the kids really liked at work. i have 5 to 7 todds in my room by myself or 10 or more with another teacher we have to keep them busy
May 13th, 2006, 8:53am
Colour Wonder products by Crayola rock! Little ones LOVE to scribble and these don't get anywhere but on the paper.
NEVER underestimate the power of a bath. Throw them in the tub together with some bath toys and let them splash.
My mom does all kinds of crazy things with my kids I would have NEVER thought of.. she lets them put plastic clothespins in an empty milk jug which is for some reason, the funnest thing EVER. I don't know why kids like this more than a shape sorter, but they go wacky over it. She also puts a few towels down on her kitchen floor and lets them play with water, and plastic bowls, and measuring cups, and spoons.. You have to sit with them because even a TINY amount of water can be dangerous, but they love to "cook" and pour. She is also a master of the blanket house, and she will build forts and put some toys under the "house" and kids love that. Grandmas rule. :)
Your local library probably has a toddler time with books or playgroups, you may wanna look into that. It's free and fun and you will have to sing goofy songs. :)
May 13th, 2006, 12:00pm
As long as they won't eat it, playdough is also great. You can easily homemake if eating is a concern--even some restaurants give out unbaked pizza dough to play with.
May 13th, 2006, 2:23pm
If you're up for taking them places (easy places/controlled small spaces!), call your library. Usually they have a weekly/bi-weekly storytime for little ones. I go every week with my 2 and 3 year olds -- have since my first one was a baby.
Our Barnes & Noble also has a bi-weekly storytime. Look online for the schedule or call them.
http://storelocator.barnesandnoble.com/find_a_store.do;jsessionid=DCB4273DABB73461AEA6BD102DE7BC70 (enter your zip code and the calendar for your store should show up)
(If you have a Borders bookstore, they usually do the same program.)
My little ones love to play with the Fisher-Price Little People toys - people, doll house, minivan, barn, etc. They can play for hours. They line them up, sort them, hide them in buckets or under scarves or make up adventures for them now that they're older.
We only do this in the kitchen or bathtub, but when we can't get outside, a little BUBBLE SOAP goes a long way. I blow them and they pretend to be in a car wash. Toddlers never get sick of the bubblesoap. (Trust me, I have asthma and I'm waiting for that day to come.)
A box/basket full of different hats and dress-up stuff is always fun, too. Make sure to provide a mirror and play peek-a-boo if the hat's too big.
Little Tikes makes a cute (inexpensive, too) set of instruments - all shaped like animals. Put on a CD of kids music (or not) and have a parade or just sit and play together.