Sunday, 27 January 2013

Planning Play

As all the mums and dads out there will know, it's tricky to plan things with toddlers. They have their own minds, after all, and don't always what to do what we think they will enjoy or what we think they should do.

However, each week after reading what Harry does with the childminder on a Thursday morning I have found myself feeling a bit wistful that we don't manage to complete that much when we are at home. So I am planning a little experiment. By no means am I going to be removing Harry's 'free play' time, but I am going to try to make an activity open to him each afternoon that we might not otherwise have done. For example, Harry almost never instigates creative/messy play - by which I mean he is very unlikely to ever ask to do colouring, painting, play dough etc. However, as much as he loves his cars, by the end of the afternoon he does sometimes seem to reach saturation and ask for the TV on.

So, this week I am going to just think a little ahead and make sure I am prepared for a good play session straight after nap time. We are going to go for a dinosaur theme as Harry has really been into his 'Harry and the Dinosaurs' books recently:

Monday -  am: Daddy is on holiday - Soft play. pm: Track-making with cars and paint (or Daddy's choice).
Tuesday - am: Cousin Isla coming to play. pm: Playdough and dinosaurs.
Wednesday - am: Toddler group at Children's Centre. pm: Dinosaur sticking/colouring activity.
Thursday - am: Childminder. pm: Dinosaur swamp cakes (with green colouring!)
Friday - am: Messy Play Group. pm: Active play - stomp like a dinosaur! I plan to make a cushion fort/forest/swamp in his bedroom with all the blankets and pillows in the house.

Do you plan your child's play? Does it work? What do you think of my ideas? I hope to feed back to you next week how we got on!


  1. Sounds like a great plan! I do something similar with mine too- they have busy boxes which I fill with a themed activty each week. So this week my son has cutting and sticking things in his box and we've done loads with that. I also always plan for messy play and creative stuff too. I make sure its all ready the night before and we move around activities quite quickly to stop him getting bored. I used to be a teacher and we planned play all the time at school :-D

  2. Those busy boxes are a great idea! I might be stealing that one... I am an English teacher and I think next week's play might be themed around a book... just got to decide which one! We have been hit and miss with our planned activities this week, although swamp cakes did make an appearance lol. Not a very attractive one though ;-)