8 Activities You Must Do With Your Toddlers and Preschoolers This Year

  • Image courtesy Alison Lee
    Image courtesy Alison Lee

    With my first son, I planned activities for him every day when he was a toddler—walks, playdates at friends’ houses, visits to indoor gyms, toddler-friendly crafts, spontaneous picnics on the living room floor, and swimming–just to name a few. I was fanatical about filling all his waking hours with something

    Is it a second child syndrome? My second child, now 20 months old, has had a few playdates, plenty of food messes on the floor masquerading as “craft” (more a result of baby-led weaning where he fed himself yogurt, fruit, rice, pasta from a young age), and has gone swimming once. He spends most of his day playing cars, trucks ,and trains with his brother, riding the bike, going up and down the slide at the playground, and occasional trips to the toy store, but this is nowhere near the kinds of things we did with his big brother. 

    { MORE: 5 Fun Mom-Toddler Date Ideas }

    As a family, we have been to zoos, gone bush walking in Australia, visited a science museum and an aquarium, and run around in plenty of parks, but vacations are not an everyday occasion.

    So for 2014, I am putting together a list of things I’d like to do with my toddler (and as a family). If I write them down, from the simple to the more involved goals, I feel like I will reach that goal of making quality time the focus of the new year while also engaging my toddler as he begins to become even more aware and interested in his surroundings. 

    {Continued: Activity #1}


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8 Activities You Must Do With Your Toddlers and Preschoolers This Year

Alison Lee is a former PR and marketing professional turned work-at-home mother. After a 10-year career in various PR agencies, and of the world’s biggest sports brands, she traded in product launches and world travel, for sippy cups, diapers, and breastfeeding. Alison is a former blogger (Writing, Wishing), and her writing has been featured on Mamalode,On Parenting at The Washington Post,The Huffington Post, Everyday Family, Scary Mommy, Club Mid, andDrGreene.com. She is one of 35 essayists ... More

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  1. Profile photo of Brittany Brittany says:

    I think it is important to plan trips/activities for your toddler, regardless of whether it is your first child or your fourth. These activities are not only a great bonding experience, but also a learning experience and if you don’t take your child out and explore places or meet new people, they aren’t going to have very many memories to cherish and they are going to wind up sheltered and not know how to interact come time for daycare/school.

    • Profile photo of Brittany Brittany says:

      I was a single mother when my daughter was a toddler. I worked part-time, so money was an issue. But even though I couldn’t take her on extravagant outings, I still took her out every day. Whether it was on a walk, or to the store so she could pick out a healthy snack, or to the park…Then there were times I had saved up money and I took her to the fair, to the Seattle Aquarium, Pikes Place Market. Also, look around for free, fun events; like parades, story time at your library, car shows usually have activities for small kids, such as bouncy houses, face painting, cotton candy, etc.

  2. Profile photo of Rebekah Rebekah says:

    It must be nice to be able to afford to go to the beach more than four times a year. The rest sounds fun though.

  3. Profile photo of ronnysue ronnysue says:

    That all sounds great but when you’re a single mother of 4 3 boys who are 3 5 and 8 and a 1 year old little girl its so hard my kids are so picky and cant agree on anything so every place I have taken them to one always shows ther butts I would love to go out and do things with my children but they really dont listen to nothing I say I wont whip them my family thinks I should but there my babies its just so hard I do it all myself does anyone have any suggestions on something that all of my kids can do without attitude I have even tried cosi that was one train wreck of a day.thank you ronnysue