2 year olds are notoriously known for being endless bundles of energy – who are keen to play and learn all day long. And this is amazing for their development as their innate curiosity and excitement for the world around them have all kinds of positive learning benefits.
However, as parents – it can be daunting (not to mention exhausting) thinking of just how you are going to keep them entertained all day. And you may notice that peekaboo just isn’t the crowd pleaser it used to be when they were younger…
So, to help parents, we’ve put together our top 7 easy learning activities for 2 year olds.
Make some shape monsters
Shape monsters are a great activity for helping your 2 year old learn about colors and shapes from early on. In this easy activity, simply cut out circles, triangles and squares from felt, cardboard or coloured paper and decorate. You can stick on googly eyes, or simply use pencils to personalize your little monsters.
This activity is great for developing their fine motor skills as they pick up the different shapes. You can also encourage the development of their numeracy skills by counting the monsters together, as well as their understanding of shapes and colors by grouping the monsters up. Plus, once you are done learning about shapes and colors – you can transition to developing their social skills by roleplaying monsters together.
Find the full instructions and materials needed here.
A timeless classic – dress-ups are a great activity for developing their social skills and encouraging their imagination. At 2 years old, your toddler is likely to begin developing an interest in pretend play and dress-ups can really help get the party started. Whether it is princesses, superheroes, doctors or a chef – pretend play is a great way to help them learn to regulate their emotions.
During dress-ups can be a great time to introduce some mild conflict, to encourage the development of their problem-solving skills. If they are running a cafe – pretend to spill your coffee and see how they react and give them space to come up with a potential solution.
Get crafty with cloud collages
Arts and Crafts are so beneficial for your toddler’s development of their creativity, motor skills and self-expression. This easy craft is a great indoor activity that will occupy little ones for hours and engage their budding artistic sides! Simply take some cotton wool buds, blue paper and glue and create a cloud collage with your toddler.
While you create together, this is a great opportunity to teach them about clouds, the weather and rain.
Music and Dancing!
Listening to music and dancing are perfect activities for two-year-olds! Music and movement help to stimulate their minds and bodies, while also helping them to develop important skills like coordination and creativity. Music can also provide an outlet for emotional expression, making it a great way for two-year-olds to express themselves. Dancing can also help to improve their motor skills and overall physical fitness.
Act out their favorite storybook
Storytime is such a great way to develop their literacy skills and love of reading from a young age. However, if your toddler is filled with energy and struggling to sit still – it can be a great, easy learning activity to act out a story they are familiar with. This can be as simple as reading the book together, pointing at the pictures and making funny voices. Or you can take it a step further and bring out some toys, and try ‘play out’ the story together – don’t worry if you get a little off track!
This is such a fun and easy way to develop their literacy and emotional intelligence from a young age.
Make some noise!
Music is a great way to encourage their self-expression as well as to develop their motor skills. Making some noise together can be a great and easy learning activity – whether it is playing some instruments together (e.g. toy maracas) or throwing on some music and having a boogie in the living room. As they move their body to the music they are developing their motor and rhythm skills – who knows, maybe you have a budding musician in your midst!
Build an indoor fort
Building a cubby is a great indoor activity to have up your sleeve. It’s a great learning activity to develop their motor skills, as well as their problem-solving skills as they help you gather the materials and build the cubby. Plus, as cubby houses are notoriously easy to cave in or fall apart as you build – it can help them (and even mum or dad!) foster their emotional regulation and patience.
Once the cubby is all set up, you can leave them to their secret hideout for some independent play. Read more about setting up their cubby here.
Keeping your 2-year-old busy, having fun and learning about the world around them – really will have you moving all day. The good news is that all of these learning activities, games and time you spend with them, are so beneficial to their growing minds and bodies. Hopefully, this list has provided you with some inspo for your next free day with your toddler!