The summer’s gone, the holidays are over and now Grace and I are readjusting to spending lots of time together: just us two. That means I need to have a ton of ideas up my sleeve because bored toddler = one difficult child! So I jumped at the chance to review 5 Minute Fun’s activity card pack, which is a big pile of activities to keep kids busy for 5 minutes at a time. The idea is you can whip out a card whenever you need a distraction, whether that’s at home, the supermarket or on a journey. You can purchase the cards here for £2.99.
The cards are small, compact and come in a handy carry case, which means you can slip them into a bag without worrying they’ll fall out. They’re suitable for kids aged 2-5 and the ideas on them are really mixed. Some were a little difficult for my 2-year-old but I like that she’ll grow into those soon. The activities cover drawing challenges, spotting games, simple makes, things to learn and things to make kids giggle. They’re super simple and made me wonder, “Why haven’t we tried this before?” But I’m just not the kind of mum who thinks of giving their child spaghetti to thread through a colander!
We ended up doing a couple of challenges a day. They reminded me that kids find doing the same stuff every day just as boring as we do but you don’t have to spend lots of money on new toys every time they’re getting restless. The cards cost £2.99, which I think is really good value because you get 50 ideas to try and we’ll be able to keep using them as Grace gets older. We photographed some of the activities that we had the most fun with. I hope you like the pictures! If you get these cards, I’d love to see some of your kids trying the activities too.
1) Give your child a pencil and paper and challenge them to draw a portrait of you. Just your face or all of you – can they draw their own portrait too?
Grace loved this one. We ended up taking it in turns to draw every member of our family, plus her friends from nursery and Grandma’s cats!
2) Get your child to create a safe place for a fluffy toy. A box, blanket, pillow. Then settle down with their toy for a 5-minute rest. They could tell them a story, too.
I didn’t think Grace would do the settling down for a rest bit, but she did! We’ll definitely be doing this quiet time activity again.
3) Scrunch up some paper and give your child a target to throw it into or at. They earn 2 points each time they reach the target. What’s the highest score they get in 5 minutes?
Grace was too little to do the point scoring, but I was impressed she could aim at a target. These cards made us try things I wouldn’t have thought to do otherwise.
4) Send your child off to collect fallen twigs and leaves. Their challenge is to use them to create a nature face.
I did some gardening this weekend and of course Grace wanted to “help”! Once I showed her how to make a face she was hooked. And it meant she gathered up all these leaves, bonus!
5) Create a choo-choo train with cushions for your little one to drive. Keep them busy by leaving toys around the room they have to collect on their journey. Where are they going? What will they see?
This was a massive hit. In fact, Grace now pulls off the cushions to make a choo-choo at least once a day. It’s lovely to have found a new simple idea that she loves.