Monday, August 14, 2006

Fun Activities for You and Your Child

By Brandi M. Seals

Sometimes it can be hard to come up with something to do that is fun and exciting for both you and your child. But, with a little thought and imagination you can come up with some excellent adventures to share with your son or daughter.

Really anything you can do with your child will be fun for him or her. Find what he or she is interested in and then find an activity that coordinates with that. For example, if your son loves to play catch, why not watch a baseball game together? If your daughter likes to ice skate, take her to see the Ice Capades or a hockey game. If your child cannot get enough of her finger paints, go to a museum together. The possibilities are endless. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Visit the Zoo
I do not care how old you are, the zoo is always fun. There are animals that you rarely get to see like lions and tigers. There are those that you never knew existed, like the Hoffman sloth or the Polish chicken. And there are those that are always fun to watch, like the spider monkeys. Take your child and learn something new about the various animals at your local zoo.

Visit the Park
Even if you child plays on the swings everyday, she will still enjoy doing it when you are there to supervise. Pack a picnic lunch and head out to your favorite park. Look at the flowers, chase butterflies, or play hopscotch together. Whatever you decide to do, the two of you will share a fun day together. By the way, the picnic does not need to be anything spectacular. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and juice boxes will be just fine.

See a Performance
Is there a performing arts center near you? If so, check to see what child oriented programs they have coming up. You never know what you might find. From performances by Dora the Explorer to the circus, you are bound to find something that will fascinate every child. No performing arts center? Is there maybe a local theatre or community center where you can see a show?

Do Crafts Together
Do you like to scrapbook, decoupage or make collages? Why not get your child involved? He or she will love learning a new skill and hey who cares if they are not that great at it. You will still have great memories of the experience, not to mention a treasure that your child made just for you.

If you are not a crafter, you can still to macaroni collages together or paint a picture to hang on the fridge. Anything that allows your child to be creative should go over well with the youngens.

Rent Videos
If you are stuck inside because your child is sick or there is crumby weather outside, you could rent some videos and watch them together. Be sure to let your children pick out their favorites. Since kids like to watch the same movies over and over again, try to get one that is educational in some way. Maybe they can watch other kids share toys, maybe they pick up some Spanish or maybe they simply see kids behaving well. Whatever it is, try to get videos with a lesson.

Go Ice Skating or Rollerblading
If there is an ice rink or frozen lake or pond nearby, be sure to go ice skating. Your child will learn balance and have a ball going round and round on their skates. If you do not have ice skates and cannot find a place to rent them, your child can still have a great time sliding around on the ice in shoes or boots.

When it is not winter time or there are no ice rinks in town, you can probably find a roller arena or at least a paved parking lot to skate around on. Roller blades can be a low cost investment and loads of fun. Otherwise, stick to the roller arenas where you can rent rollerblades.

If you have an activity that you and your child love to do together, please feel free to share it with the rest of us by commenting on this article.

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