How to entertain your kids without losing your marbles

RESCUE MISSION: Blogger Timann Esterhuizen’s son Arden saves ‘trapped’ animals by cutting off tape while strengthening his little fingers
RESCUE MISSION: Blogger Timann Esterhuizen’s son Arden saves ‘trapped’ animals by cutting off tape while strengthening his little fingers
Image: SUPPLIED

So you’ve survived a full week of the lockdown with the kids at home but are running out of ideas to keep them busy?   

Not to worry, mom blogger and Munchkins Parenting coach Timann Esterhuizen has some tricks up her sleeve to help you make the most of your time together as a family.

The Port Elizabeth mom of two, who recently moved to Pretoria with her family, specialises in helping parents with creative ways to keep the kids busy and offers Skype consultations to help mom and dad deal with having their nearest and dearest at home full-time.

“With the school routine out of the way, we are quick to let boundaries slide.

“Unfortunately, this will certainly not help when school starts again and we do need to guide them with good and consistent parenting practices,” Esterhuizen says.

She shares these easy-to-do activities suitable for children:

1. Homemade robots — all ages

“This is an activity for the whole family and needs parental supervision.
“Go raid your garage and kitchen,” Esterhuizen says.

What you need

Offcut wood
Nails,
Bottle caps,
Screws,
Nuts and bolts,
Piping  
A hammer or two

What to do

“Let your imagination go wild and design your own robot with stuff you have around the house,” she says.

2. Free the animals — for toddlers

“This is a super-easy activity and you can use whatever you have that makes your child tick, to hide in a muffin tin,” Esterhuizen says.

“I used insulation tape but if you don’t have any lying around, use paper and Sellotape to hide those items.

“This is especially a lovely activity for the little ones who are starting to use scissors. I even added a sweetie or two, to make it even more exciting,” she says.

ENGINEERS IN THE MAKING: Landen and Arden Esterhuizen keep busy with indoor games
ENGINEERS IN THE MAKING: Landen and Arden Esterhuizen keep busy with indoor games
Image: SUPPLIED

3. Sticky window — all ages

“Again, I am all about being practical,” she says.

What you need

Some flowers
Leaves,
Pom-poms,
Sticks or any craft items you have laying around

What to do 

Pull out the off-cut contact paper you used to cover your children’s schoolbooks and stick it up on a wall or a window.

Cut up or shape your leaves, flowers and other items and stick them on the “sticky window”, creating little pictures of anything.

“And you have a fun activity, boosting creativity and imagination,” Esterhuizen says.

The coach also helps with sibling rivalry, creative activities, potty training, sleep coaching, discipline, eating issues, sensory issues and more.

Visit Esterhuizen’s Instagram page for more activities.

Another Port Elizabeth blogger, Heather Step, keeps you up to date about what other mom bloggers are busy with, on her blog SA Mom Blogs.

Giving parents a Covid-19 survival guide, she has shared links to SA mothers’ blogs with things to do with the kids at home.

One of the blogs, Fun Mamma SA, shares an easy guide to making microwave puffy paint.

What you need

Microwave puffy paint
Microwave puffy paint
Image: Funmammasa.co.za

1 tblsp plain flour
1 tblsp salt
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1 tblsp plus 1 tsp of water
Food colouring

What to do 

Mix all the ingredients together.

Paint onto paper.

Put the painting into the microwave for 20 seconds. Do not leave the microwave unattended during that time.

Carefully remove the painting and observe the wonderful transformation

Be careful — the paint may be hot when it is removed from the microwave

Visit Fun Mamma SA for more craft activities and SA Mom Blogs to see what other mom bloggers suggest.

X