Sibling Fun: What to Do When Baby’s on the Way
I Spy, Nursery Style
Try playing “I, spy” with your child in the baby’s nursery. Before you begin, point out where to find diapers, burpcloths, blankets, extra clothes, and wipes. Sit together and play until you’ve discovered where to find everything. This game is a great way to prep your youngster for big brother duty—he can go on errands for diapers and know exactly where to find them!
Activities for Your Child to Do Solo
The Power of Puzzles
Depending on your child’s age, select a puzzle for her to play with when you need a few moments to yourself. Wooden puzzles with large pieces will appeal to younger children, but don’t shy away from more complex puzzles for preschoolers ready for a challenge. You could also start the puzzle with your child, and then ask her to finish on her own. For a special activity, purchase a blank puzzle at a local craft store and let your child create a picture on it. Your child will enjoy putting back together the picture she created.
Quiet Time Box
Create your own quiet time box using an old shoe box or an equally sized plastic container. Place items in it you know your child might enjoy—toys, cookie cutters, measuring cups, old CDs, even toilet paper rolls (make sure the items are age appropriate and not small enough to cause a choking hazard). Limit the time your child plays with his box—for instance when you’re feeding your baby or during your little one’s naptime. If your child can play with it all the time, it won’t be special.
Cheerios, Fruit Loops, and dried macaroni or penne all make for great necklaces. Give your child yarn to string together the “beads” of her choice. To make noodle necklaces more colorful, Kuffner suggests mixing one-half cup rubbing alcohol and a few drops of food coloring in a bowl. Stir in your pasta and leave it to soak in the color (this part of the activity should be done by a parent). Dry the noodles completely before letting your child use them.
Welcoming a new little sister or brother can be a big adjustment for a child. Make the transition easier by coming up with fun activities that you and your youngster can share together!
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