Ever have a day where you are begging for 20 minutes to yourself, but you have kids and that is preventing you from getting that 20 minutes to maybe make a phone call? Or maybe you just had a rough day and need time to get yourself together with peace and quiet. (See my article on Self Care. This is especially important if you really find yourself frazzled on a daily basis.)
I have a solution for you! Mother approved, and kid tested!!! A Quiet Time Activity/Craft! So, I have a 3 year old, and a one year old. The key is an activity that has structure, but the child can complete it independently. Now, you may not get 20 minutes out of your child all the time. Other times…the activity might keep your kids busy for hours. Those times are never expected but always appreciated.
This is very simple, and doesn’t have to be anything expensive. As long as it is age appropriate, fun, and independent you are golden! Make sure the craft is something you trust them to use the materials appropriately. For example, I won’t give my son crayons. He chews on them when I’m not looking. For him, his favorite was a metal strainer that he added pipe cleaners in all the holes. That is good for his motor skills too!
I started using this to entice my daughter to take a nap. She is 3, and quite a little devil if she becomes over tired. But….she didn’t want to go in her room and nap. So, she would yell and bang on her door and be quite trying, as many 3 year olds can be at times. So, I sent her to her room with a quiet craft, and whaddaya know???!!! It works. She usually falls asleep after a while, and I don’t have to deal with all the banging on the door.
Today, I gave her a bag of small foam stickers, markers, and a paper towel roll.
She decided it was a telescope to look at the moon, and she spent 45 minutes of blissful quiet coloring and decorating of her telescope to look at the moon. At night, I will open her blinds so she could look through it and look at the moon. The entire craft cost me about 50 cents. Your child’s quiet time craft/activity could be anything. Use what is around. I can’t stress how awesome Pinterest is for ideas.
For older children, Pinterest is a treasure trove of STEM activities that will keep older children busy, all while educating them. Of course if you aren’t into stem, that’s okay, there are lots of ideas!