Building Resilience: Free Daily Activities for Busy Parents
Parents have such busy lives that it's hard for them to find the time to stop and play with their children as they juggle work, home life, and homework! The great news is that you don't always need to spend hours playing with your children; actually, playing with them more often but for shorter amounts of time is just as great! So, to help you along, I'll add an activity to this page every day; these are imaginative and engaging games for you and your child to play together for around 20 minutes.
The most important thing to remember is that you don't have to do this every day but when you do, it has to be 20 minutes of uninterrupted play! That means no phones, no screen time, no chores – just playing! Your child needs your full attention during this time - you’ll see the positive difference it makes! Spending quality time together, sharing ideas, having fun, and truly connecting with your children is one of the foundations to building resilience.
You don’t need to buy anything extra to play these games; you only need yourselves and things you already have in your house and outside. All the games are designed to inspire the imagination so that you and your children can be as inventive and creative as you want! They involve no direction, no teaching, and no gadgets. Each game is presented as an idea for you to take forward as you wish, so I hope you and your children have loads of fun! Let me know...
Activity 1 - Magazine Monster
You need: old magazines, scissors, paper, and glue
Look through old magazines and cut out different body parts that you find (e.g. eyes, ears, hands, legs, body, etc.). You and your child can then choose different parts and stick these down on pieces of paper to create your very own crazy monster pictures.
Activity 2 - Sticks Mix
You need: bag and sticks
Each of you needs to collect a bag of different sticks from outside (e.g. in size, colour, shape), and take turns trying to create something out of your sticks. You then each need to try and guess what each of you is creating using your sticks, and the one who guesses correctly most of the time is the winner.
Activity 3 - Magic Mirror
You need: mirror and different household items
Pretend that one of the mirrors in your house is a magic mirror; when you put something in front of it, it tells you that it is something different (e.g. it’s something bigger and more amazing!). You and your child find things that you can put in front of the mirror and then tell each other what the mirror might say it is (e.g. a toy bird might be a flying dragon, or a car might be a famous monster truck).
Activity 4 - Witty Why
You need: paper, pen, and prize
You and your child ask each other lots of real questions (e.g. why does a cat have two ears?) but then you have to offer silly answers for them (e.g. because the cat bought one and got the other one free). Keep a note of all the answers that you came up with and at the end, you both decide who came up with the funniest answer, and therefore who wins the prize.