Engaging your kids while you are working is essential!
Left to find their own fun, kids often get in trouble. They make huge messes, experiment with toys and toilets, and engage in any number of activities that we wouldn’t approve of.
Like the time my toddler dumped out flour on the kitchen floor to make a racetrack for his cars. Total mess!
It’s much better to give them something that you approve of. You can get them started with an activity, and then let them explore and play while you work nearby.
Here Are Five of My Favorite Toys for Engaging Kids While Freelancing
All five of them:
- Allow for imaginative play
- Entertain multiple ages at the same time
- Can be played with alone or with others
- Promote some form of learning through play
They’re also mostly quiet, so I don’t have to worry about adding even more noise to our crazy house!
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1. Foam Building Puzzles
I love these things! They’re soft, so I don’t have to worry about anyone getting hurt if a sibling decides to throw a piece at someone’s head.
Our absolute favorite is a set that my sister got Sydney for her birthday a couple years ago. I couldn’t find the exact set to link to, but here’s a similar one. The pieces are perfect for building houses, castles, and more. Here’s a project the kids worked together on:
Alphabet foam mats are also lots of fun. They can be turned into forts, used for alphabet identification, and anything else your children can think of. They’re fun to hide and let your children search for.
Note: These can be bitten, and large chunks torn off. I have a one child who can’t use foam mats because I know he will bite them.
2. Wooden Blocks Plus Toy Cars or Toy Animals
My kids all enjoy building roads, garages, and pens out of wooden blocks. They make the perfect prop for imaginative play.
Get out the wooden blocks, and some other toys and see what your child can create. It’s the perfect open-ended play combination!
3. Pop Up Play Tunnels & Tents
Most kids seem to love these pop up play areas. I love that they fold thinly for storage. These aren’t a toy that I allow all my kids to use, because rough handling will break them. But, for most of my clan–they’re an engaging way to turn our living room or play room into something different.
We’ve had several styles throughout the years. The one that got the most use? A pop up school bus. The kids loved using that thing indoors or out, integrating it into a game of school, or for going from one pretend town to another.
4. Legos or Mega Bloks
My older kids love building with Legos. I love it when they bring a Lego tub down to the table and build while I work. They’re always coming up with creative ideas and it’s fun to watch.
I also love encouraging active play with Legos. Getting the kids moving while engaged is a double win!
Younger kids and Legos don’t mix well, so I pull out the Mega Bloks for them. You can also give your kids a container, and have them practice tossing the blocks in. That’s a new way to play!
5. A Dollhouse and Accessories
One of my children received a doll house for her birthday last year, and all of the kids love playing with it.
They pass out the dolls and play together. They get out the paper, scissors, and glue, and create new accessories. They’ve tried making wallpaper to decorate.
It’s great! And keeps them engaged for quite a while.
What’s Your Favorite Toy for Engaging Your Kids While You Work from Home?
Please share in the comments!
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