Safe activities that encourage exploration keep active toddlers entertained.
Development of physical skills such as running, climbing and coordination cause most toddlers to stay active from morning to night. The natural exploring and activity help young children learn about the world. If your little explorer wears you out or gets herself into dangerous positions, plan activities that keep her attention and encourage learning in a safe environment.
1Watching your active toddler as she naturally explores her world provides clues to her interests. Those activities or items that keep her interest give you ideas for planning play for her. For example, if she tries to climb on furniture, make her a soft pillow obstacle course she can climb. If she is drawn to animals, let her play with large plastic animals, put together animal puzzles and plan trips to zoos or farms. A toddler who pulls out pots and pans might enjoy helping you cook. Expanding on interests helps your toddler learn about her world.
2An active toddler can quickly get into dangerous positions such as running out of the safety of the yard or getting into bathroom drawers. A safe area for your toddler to play freely allows him to get exercise and explore with less risk of injury. An example is a childproofed playroom without tall furniture that could tip. A fenced yard provides an outdoor place for your active toddler to play. Adult supervision is always necessary even in a childproofed area.
3Getting your toddler involved in everyday activities keeps her entertained so she doesn't get bored or find trouble. A regular routine that includes specific play and activity times ensures that your toddler isn't left idle. Family activities that keep everyone active are healthful options for entertaining your toddler. Examples include bike or tricycle rides, tag games, obstacle courses, races or nature hikes. You can also keep her entertained by letting her help out with everyday tasks such as folding the laundry, cooking or washing dishes.
4Physical activity helps your active toddler burn energy, but she also needs calm activities to balance the day. A mix of activity types works well for a toddler's short attention span. Activities that require skills such as sitting, listening and grasping objects can keep her entertained. Calm activities are particularly beneficial in the hour before sleep. Your toddler is able to wind down so she falls asleep easier.