September last year we had an Insta live with Krysti from The Bored Toddler. Krysti has three young boys and shares the ways she keeps her kids entertained. We know there are so many mums struggling with easy and cost-effective ways to entertain young kids and Krysti was generous enough to share five simple ideas from your very own kitchen!

A few tips from Krysti on planning and playing sensory activites with kids:

  • Take it outside – if the mess stresses you out, take it outside and make clean up so much easier.

  • Lower your expectations. Don’t expect them to sit for 30 minutes. It might be 30 seconds, or it might be an hour. Sit with them for a little while to show how to enjoy the activity. Once they’re engaged you might be able to leave them to it. Keep the activity out for them to come back to it.

  • Add water - a bath, a shower, the sprinkler outside, adding water is great when you're feeling a little frazzled. A new activity with the added bonus of getting them clean at the same time!

Image shows a condensed version of the above blog post, in purple and pink

Five things to have around the house:

  • ICE – always have ice frozen. Get some different shapes if you can. Ice smash with a toy hammer, add a few ice blocks in the bath or the bottom of the shower. Freeze pom poms or animals in the cube to  “rescue”. Painting ice gives some really cool effects.

  • CEREAL – If you have stale cereals, biscuits, rice etc. or the crumbs at the bottom of the bag, add spoons and scoops in a tub and let them scoop and pour. Empty the bottom of the cereal box into a tub or tray and give them a toy hammer. Dump puzzle pieces or small toys in a tray of cereal for kids to “hunt” for. The best part, if they eat it, it doesn’t matter! 

  • CORN FLOUR – make goop (oobleck) using cornflour and water. Get a consistency that when you squeeze it, it becomes solid but is still runny through your hands. Cornflour with hair conditioner will give you soft, crumbly snow to make little snow men or a snowy scene. Taste safe paint, just add water and food colouring or chalk!

  • TIN FOIL – wrapping puzzle pieces in foil turns an old puzzle into a fun and different game. When you’re done, scrunch up into a ball for all sorts of ball fun around the house. Painting on foil is also fun for a different effect.

  • RICE – An amazing sensory winner. Put some rice in a zip lock bag and add food colouring or poster paint and leave on a tray to dry. Put it all in a tub and let the little ones run their fingers through for an amazing sensory experience. It's great for construction toys to dig through, or even as a dinosaur discovery zone!

Go to your pantry and you’ll find so many things to entertain little ones. It doesn’t have to be hard or complicated, just something simple and they will love it.

For more tips from Krysti, follow her @the_bored_toddler on Instagram and Facebook!