Children need to be stimulated. It is important for their health as well as their personal development. This is why they need an adult around to propose ideas and organize various games and activities for them. However, this can be difficult for parents as kids always seem to have an abundance of energy, even when a parent might be flagging.
If you’re looking for some ideas on how to occupy children, here are a few solutions you can consider when you don’t necessarily have all the time in the world to be with them.
Who can occupy children when the parents are not available?
Ideally, parents should be around at all times when their children need them. However, in reality, jobs, household work, and chores keep parents busy, and they don’t have as much free time as they would like.
This is why a lot of children find themselves seated in front of a screen, with a large part of their day dedicated to television, video games, or watching videos on the internet. While this is not bad for health per se, it can be dangerous if overused.
It is therefore important to think of other activities that do not require a large time investment on the part of the parents but allow the children to spend some time outside.
Activities that do not involve a screen can be distinguished into two categories:
- Activities that require adult supervision, such as visiting the zoo, field trips from school, cultural activities, and visiting friends’ houses.
- Activities that the child can do alone safely such as board games, reading, and drawing.
Both types of activities are equally good; neither is better for development and growth. However, there needs to be a balance between the activities that a child can do with other people and activities they can do alone. It is important not to stress out and try and find the perfect solution, and instead offer your child the opportunity to do a little bit of everything for them to experience it all.
How do you occupy children aged 3-5 years?
For many parents, this is the age where it is the most difficult to keep your kids occupied. This is because they are old enough to have preferences, and not just blindly follow anything their parents say, but at the same time, they are too young to occupy themselves alone.
The main problem of trying to leave a child aged between 3-5 years alone is security. The risk of accidents has to be minimized. Watching movies or cartoons, drawing, colouring, and reading are excellent ways to develop their artistic side. Additionally, there are many other activities that you can try to keep them stimulated intellectually.
On the other hand, children still need physical activity, but it is difficult to leave them to do that alone given the high risk of accidents. This is why the vast majority of activities involving sports and physical movement are generally done under the supervision of an adult.
What sports are good for hyperactive children?
Since many parents ask this question, it is important to first define the age bracket in which the child falls.
Children above 6 years
At this age, your child can participate in a sport, or enrol in a club. There are many possibilities for this, especially if neither the children nor the parents have a particular preference. It is often easier and more interesting to choose a simple option to begin with and try many things until you find what they like.
For example, if you live in a place with pool access, then you can consider enrolling your child in a swimming class, or even a team sport where they are encouraged to respect rules. There are many other options for children between 6-9 years such as judo or track – all you need to do is choose!
Children between 3-6 years
Trying to find an activity for children in this age group is more difficult. One option for this is a ‘baby gym’ course, which is a physical and fun activity. You can also consider aquatic activities, but the options are limited if you live in a place without access to water bodies.
Another option you can consider is an indoor activity like dancing – for example, try making a simple choreographed sequence for your children, that will occupy them and make them happy. You can also entertain them by telling them stories. BeBop game tunes can be an ideal solution in this scenario!
What are the advantages of an inflatable playground for children?
One of the best options for entertaining children in this age group is a bouncy castle or an inflatable. Inflatables have several activities and features for children to amuse themselves with, such as:
- Rebound Zones
- Inflatable swimming pools
- Inflatable ball pools
- Climbing walls
- Water canons
With a bouncy castle, your children can pass hours of endless entertainment, and will return home happy, tired, and ready to sleep. Even the smallest bouncy castle can accommodate up to 5 children, so they can play with their friends.
What are the advantages of bouncy castles for parents?
Most bouncy castles take only 10 minutes to assemble and you don’t need to waste time finding alternate ways to occupy your child. However, the most valuable advantage is that bouncy castles are secure and the chances of accidents happening are minimal.
This is the best way to buy yourself some peace for a few hours, knowing your kids are having fun and indulging in physical activity. Once playtime is over, all you need is only about ten minutes to take everything apart and put it away. Finally, all you have to do is sit back and enjoy your children's smiles and listen to them tell you about their adventures aboard their superb inflatable pirate ship!
There are several ways in which you can occupy children aged 3, 6, or 9 years old. However, remember that the most important thing is to vary the activities, so that they can experience a little bit of everything. This is key to helping them form personal opinions and having a good idea of what activities appeal to them as teenagers.
Additionally, different activities prevent children from getting bored fast. An afternoon playing with their bouncy castle, another to read, another on the video game console, another to dance, another with friends, another with grandparents…it will then be the parents who will have to ask to be with their children more often!