Kids have seemingly unending energy that amazes parents. Although we may long for that kind of energy, it isn't always possible. Of course you may want to spend time with them and play, but need some low key activities for when you just can't play another round of horsey. Try these activities with kids that will let you relax for a while until it's time to play tag.
Draw Pictures Together
Do your children love to play with arts and crafts supplies? If so, one of the best ways to keep them entertained after school is to break out the colored pencils and draw pictures together. As long as you don’t let them play with messy paints or clay, allowing your kids to draw with pens or colored pencils is a low-maintenance way to have run, relax, and even improve your artistic abilities together.
There are many different activities that you can try periodically to keep this activity interesting for your little ones. For example, you can each choose to draw your own portrait; or, you can all contribute to a larger picture together and take turns contributing. For some serious fun, put on an old white t-shirt, bring out some markers, and let your children draw on you instead!
Play with Blocks
Perhaps one of the simplest yet most entertaining activities with kids after school that you can try this year consists of playing with blocks together. Playing with blocks with your little one allows you to work together to build something collectively, and can provide a meditative type of activity during which you can forget about any stressors and focus on the construction project in front of you.
And if you need a new set of blocks to present your child with after school this week, consider bringing home the Ants Go Marching Blocks as soon as you can. This great set of building blocks is made entirely of wood, and each block has a set of ants moving across the five sides. Using logic and critical thinking skills, your little ones can arrange the blocks so that the ants move in one continuous line throughout the entire set or be creative and who knows what will happen?
Let Your Child Be the Doctor for a Day
Few activities with children as a fun and rewarding as pretend play, especially when you engage in the activity together. Allowing your little one to play pretend individually will help enhance his imagination and creativity skills but doing this together will also help build a sense of trust and confidence as he gets lost in the world of pretend.
And if you need a few ideas to begin, consider surprising your little one with the Little Doctor Kit and letting her be a doctor for the day, healing any ailments or maladies that may appear throughout the family. This can be educational and fun for your child, as she runs back and forth with diagnoses and cures; and it can be incredibly relaxing for you, as well. After all, as the patient, it is your responsibility to sit still and let the doctor examine you to find out the problem. An hour of this activity is an excellent way to spend time together when your child comes home after school.
Tell Stories to One Another
If you are looking for a calm and relaxing way that you can entertain your children when they come home after school, you may find relief in storytelling. Telling stories to one another will help you bond through the experiences you share, and will allow your children to utilize their imagination and creativity skills as they craft a tale.
Begin by sitting on the floor together and telling a simple yet entertaining story (this can be one from your own past, or a children’s story with a moral). Once you are finished, let your children each tell a story of their choosing, helping out wherever necessary. You may even take turns telling the story, first your child starts and then you pick it up, then trade back. Don’t be surprised if your little ones are too excited about this activity to stop!
Have Fun after School without Wearing Yourself Out
Entertaining the kids doesn’t have to be an exhausting endeavor. Instead, consider trying these four fun activities with kids to have a blast and relax before you settle in for the night.