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In this season where we find ourselves spending more time at home, we understand that it can be difficult for parents to juggle between fulfilling roles in both parenthood and career. Planning kids’ activities and ensuring that your kids’ time at home are occupied meaningfully is often an additional task that is tedious and time consuming. Fret not, we hear you! To support parents in this stay-at-home season, the EAP team has compiled various resources of activity ideas from the internet that you can carry out with your children. Starting from March, a series (or two!) of thematic activities will be published each month on our EAP blog, so do stay tuned for more! Kick start your week active and energized with our Music & Movement Mondays activities, unleash your creativity doing arts and crafts on Crafty Tuesdays, have some splashing fun on Wild Wednesdays, make some snacks for Tasty Thursdays and end your week by spending some Funtastic Fridays with your family!

In conjunction with the World Wildlife Day which falls on the 3rd of March, we would like to appreciate and raise awareness on the wildlife flora and fauna. Hence, the first theme for our March kids activities would be Wildlife Animals! Here, we have prepared some wildlife animals themed activities where your kids can learn more about different wildlife animals while having fun! 

 

Music & Movement Mondays

Vital to the development of motor skills as well as maintaining health and wellbeing, movement activities help to build attention and imitation skills. It is also a great opportunity for you to engage and have fun with your child!

 

1. Animal Dances

Materials: 

Steps: Play the videos and dance along with your kids! Using animal props/outfits can help immerse your kid into the activity.

 

2. Dress up as animals!

Steps: Dress up with your kids and take pictures! Doing pretend play with your child is also a great way to also teach your child about animal sounds, features, movements and other facts about the animals.

 

Crafty Tuesdays

Arts and Crafts activities help to nurture your child’s creativity and fine motor skills! With these activities, your child could occupy their time meaningfully, and also feel successful and accomplished with a self-made craft piece!

1. Paper Plate Animal Mask

Materials: 

  • Paper plate
  • Paint
  • Paint brush
  • Glue
  • Paper straw
  • Scissors
  • Colour paper

Steps:

  1. Pick an animal to make.
  2. Cut the paper plate in half.
  3. Draw two circles for the eyes then cut them out.
  4. Paint the paper plate according to the colour of the animal.
  5. Draw the ears and nose for the animals on colour paper and cut them out.
  6. Paste the ears and nose on the paper plate with glue.
  7. Paste the paper straw to the back of the mask and you are done!

2. Handprint Butterfly

Materials:

  • Colour paper
  • Markers
  • Scissors
  • Glue

Steps:

  1. Trace your hands on two different colour paper then cut them out
  2. Repeat step 1 until you have 4 handprints
  3. Cut out the shape of the butterfly’s body on a green colour paper
  4. Glue one hand print on another handprint to make the butterfly’s wings. Repeat on the other side to create the butterfly’s second wing
  5. Glue the wings on the back of each side of the body
  6. Use markers to draw the eyes and mouth of the butterfly
  7. Use markers or cut out shapes on another colour paper to decorate the wings of the butterfly.

 

Wild Wednesdays

Water and sensory play has always been one of the favourite play activities for most of our kids here in EAP. Other than building and strengthening motor skills, water and sensory play also provides an opportunity for sensory exploration for your child.

1. Ice Cube Animal Rescue

Materials: 

  • Ice/Muffin Tray
  • Plastic animal figurines
  • Water Spray/Squeeze Bottle/Water Dropper/Ladle
  • Plastic Tub
  • Water

Steps:

  1. Put one animal figurine into each ice/muffin tray’s compartments.
  2. Add water into the ice tray/ muffin tray and place in the freezer to freeze them up!
  3. Add some water in the plastic tub and put in the animal ice cubes.
  4. Using a water spray/squeeze bottle/water dropper/ladle, get your child to “rescue” the trapped animal figurines by melting the ice! 

2. Muddy Animal Wash

Materials: 

  • 2 plastic containers
  • 1 box of chocolate pudding mix/ corn flour mix with cocoa powder
  • plastic animal figurines
  • dish soap
  • sponge/ brush
  • Water

Steps:

  1. In the first plastic container add water to chocolate pudding mix or cornflour mix with cocoa powder to create the mud.
  2. Add plastic animal figurines into the muddy container.
  3. In the second plastic container, add dish soap and water.
  4. Get your child to pick up the muddy animal figurines and give them a “bath” in the soap mixture using sponge/brush.

 

Tasty Thursdays

Other than sharpening attention and motor skills, preparing snacks can also empower your child with independent living skills. Participating in the making of meals may pique your child’s interest and develop a new hobby. For children with autism that have food tolerance issues, this is also a fun way to engage and encourage them to try new foods!

1. Bear Bread

Materials: 

  • Bread
  • Peanut butter
  • Banana
  • Blueberry

Steps:

  1. Spread some peanut butter on a slice of bread
  2. Place some sliced banana as ears and mouth.
  3. Add in the blueberries as eyes and nose, and your bear bread is done!

2. Eggciting Tiger

 

Materials: 

  • 2 boiled eggs (sliced)
  • 2 chicken/beef patties (cooked)
  • Mayonnaise
  • Dried seaweed
  • Blueberries
  • Kid friendly knife

Steps:

  1. Spread some mayonnaise onto the patties
  2. Shape two slices of egg in a way that resembles a cat’s ears.
  3. Make the cat’s paws with another two slices of boiled egg.
  4. Cut some boiled egg white to make the tail and whiskers.
  5. Place two blueberries as the eyes and one for the nose.
  6. Cut the dried seaweed and decorate the plate.
  7. It’s time to start the “Eggciting Patty”!

 

Funtastic Fridays

Coming to the end of the week, why not take up a notch and go on for some adventures with your child? Here are some activities to make your Fridays extra “Fun”tastic, where you can go on virtual tours, treasure hunts or do fun and interesting science experiments with your child!

1. Virtual Museum Tour

 

 

Materials: 

  • Device with internet connection (laptop/computer/tablet/smartphone)

Link:  National Museum of Natural History Virtual Tour

Enjoy a virtual tour with your child at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History!

2. Hunting for Painted Stone Creatures

 

Materials: 

  • Pebbles
  • Coloured felt tip pens (e.g. Sharpie)
  • (Optional) Clear Varnish (if you want to protect your painted pebble art from the rain)

Steps:

  1. Wash and dry stones before drawing.
  2. Draw on the pebbles! Be creative with your child. Some examples:    
    1. Spider – draw a black spider with cute little face and long legs
    2. Ladybird – colour the body red with black spots, add a face and eyelashes
    3. Bumble Bee – black and yellow striped body with a face and antenna
    4. Mouse – pink nose, pink ears and whiskers
    5. Hedgehog – draw on the brown prickles and a cheeky face
    6. Caterpillar – choose a long stone – draw on green circles for the body and add lots of legs
  3. Once the pebbles are dried, you can give the stones a coat of clear varnish to protect your drawings from the rainy weather.
  4. Parents can hide the painted pebbles around the house or in the garden and get the kids to hunt for them!

Learning can take place in many forms, and we believe that having a fun element could really add the spark in your child’s learning journey. Take this stay-at-home season as an opportunity to spend more quality time creating new memories and learning together with your child! With all the activity ideas above, we hope this helps you in planning productive daily activities with your child! Feel free to try out the activities, share your photo and tag us at @eapmalaysia, with #EAPMalaysia and #WelcomeToHope on Instagram or Facebook! Stay tuned for more kids activities!

 

References:

  1. Animal Dance: https://youtu.be/30ePPeUbwSs
  2. Dress up as Animals: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/203154633169701649/ 
  3. Paper Plate Animal Mask: https://crafts4toddlers.com/easy-paper-plate-animal-masks/
  4. Handprint Butterfly: https://www.simpleeverydaymom.com/handprint-butterfly-craft-for-kids/
  5. Ice Cube Animal Rescue: https://rootedchildhood.com/sea-animal-rescue-ice-cube-sensory-play/?epik=dj0yJnU9RjBlSkgtcTgyNVlCcXFuSXFtY3JPT09TYlh6VVBzMzImcD0wJm49LUg3eENLTVFyYzlyeDRxd3hBbzlydyZ0PUFBQUFBR0FSeW5n 
  6. Muddy Animal Wash: https://www.fizzypeaches.com/2019/01/how-we-play-washing-the-muddy-animals.html/?utm_medium=social&utm_source=pinterest&utm_campaign=tailwind_smartloop&utm_content=smartloop&utm_term=20487970
  7. Bear Bread: https://www.creativehealthyfamily.com/super-fun-healthy-teddy-bear-toasts/  
  8. Eggciting Patty: https://www.lushome.com/food-decoration-art-design-ideas-creating-creative-colorful-snacks/138261
  9. Virtual Museum Tour:   https://naturalhistory.si.edu/visit/virtual-tour
  10. Hunting for Painted Stone Creatures: https://daisiesandpie.co.uk/painted-stone-creatures/