Activity Jar

By Gabby Waltermyer

Being stuck at home day in and day out can start to feel overwhelmingly repetitive. Kids grow restless and parents become frustrated. During this time of quarantine, you should have fun activities at your fingertips. While many families have more than one kid at home with many more than one interest, creating activities that everyone will enjoy can be quite challenging. However, there are ways to make sure everyone stays entertained. Below are some of the items you will need for the activity jar you will be creating.

 

Materials Needed:

  • Large mason jar
  • Popsicle sticks
  • 1 Black sharpie
  • Colored sharpies (a color for each child)

 

The goal of this activity jar is to get all kids involved and exciting about the tasks in the jar. In order to do this, you will need to give every child a chance to think about the things that interest them. Also, as a group, have your kids think about things they would like to do together.

 

Instructions:

Step 1: give 10 sticks to each child, have them write down 10 activities on these sticks

Step 2: once they have written these activities down have them color the top of their sticks with the sharpie color you have designated to be theirs.

Step 3: give the group of children 10 sticks to share and have them come up with activities they can do together that they all would enjoy

Step 4: color these sticks a different color than the rest

Step 5: put all of the sticks into the mason Jar (you should have enough sticks for at least a week’s worth of activities)

 

Now that you have created and designed your activity jar, it will be your job as a parent to follow through with these sticks. There are a few ways in which you can choose to go about the activity jar. Here are a few examples of how you can utilize this new tool:

  1. Set specific times in the day for each kid to do their individual activity and a designated time for the group activity
  2. Allow the kids to do all activities pulled from the jar if it sounds fun to them (be willing to let them opt out if an activity does not catch their interest)
  3. Have each child rotate everyday whose activity will be pulled for the jar and at the end of the week they pull one of the group activities (this works well if the activities chosen tend to be large and time consuming)

 

Remember, it is hard for child to maintain an interest in an activity if it does not appeal to them, so be willing to have other options for kids when it is not their activity time or stick. This should be a fun project to get your children exciting about staying home! If coming up with some activities gets to be hard, I have provided examples of what you can chose to put on the sticks.

 

Example Activities:

  • Baking (cake, cookies, brownies)
  • Art projects (painting, drawing, paper-mache)
  • Games (hide and seek, tag, board games)
  • Water play (sprinklers, water balloons, backyard pool)
  • Movie or show (one episode or a whole movie)
  • Spa day (painting nails, massages, hair styling)
  • Reading books (alone or to your child)
  • Gardening (planting new plants or caring for old ones)
  • Going on walks or bike rides

 

Enjoy this time with your kids while they are young and full of energy! If you as a parent want to add activities into the jar feel free to! The more excited you are about this project the more excited your kids will be!

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