Unplug For Family Day! Move, Create and Play Together!

Fri, 02/15/2013 - 9:39am -- Jessica Baudin-...

In my neck of the woods (Alberta Canada) we celebrate Family Day on Monday. A long weekend our province dedicates to family fun! My friend Jen over at City and Baby has challenged all families to celebrate Family Day Unplugged. Here are her reasons why:

  • 73% of kids would rather play with their parents than watch TV or use the Internet. (Ikea: Play Report, 2010)
  • Teens that have more than three family dinners per week are more likely to get better grades. (Casa, 2009)
  • By graduation, the average teen will have spent more time watching screens than being in the classroom, playing sports and talking to their parents. (Screensmart.ca)
  • Residents in connected neighbourhoods have a greater quality of life. (Shields, 2008)

If you are local to Edmonton and looking to get out of the house for the day be sure to check out her award winning Family Weekend Guides.

Not in Edmonton? Wanting to stay home? Here are some family oriented activities from around the web to spend some quality time together. 

Move Together

I love these homemade Get Up and MOVE dice by Growing a Jeweled Rose. Although the original blog describes it as a toddler activity, I think you could easily tailor your dice to suit a wide variety of ages and stages. 

Spiderman, Spiderman, does whatever a spider can! Why not spin your own web and create a String Obstacle Course like Play 2 Learn with Sarah? I love how this activity combines creativity, problem solving and physical activity. For older kids time how fast they can move through the obstacle course. Can they beat their first time? Make it more challenging and try moving through the course together holding hands!

Can you think of a movement activity for each letter of the alphabet? No fears, Angelique Felix has come up with A to Z Movement Activities for Young Kids! You may even recognize the blog featured for letter Z ;)

Browse the Dance Section of our blog for more movement ideas!

Create Together

Never sure how to start an art project with you kids? Expand on an image cut from a magazine or photo like this project from ArtMommie. I love the possibility for either realism or imagination depending on how your child expands on the picture. 

Art that looks great and is yummy too? That's exactly what they're doing over at The Chocolate Muffin Tree with these homemade Edible Arrangements. A variety of fruits, cookie cutters and kabob sticks is all you need to combine an art project and snack into one healthy family activity!

If your kids are anything like mine they love stickers! And if you read this blog on a regualr basis you know one of my favorite art materials is contact paper. Over at The Artful Parent they have combined both these loves with creative contact paper stickers! Now your child can create their very own personalized stickers. These would be fun to decorate your windows with as contact paper removes very easily from glass. 

Browse our Arts and Crafts Section for more creative ideas!

Play Together

I don't know many kids who don't like to squish their hands in goop. Over at Juggling with Kids they have created Cloud Dough using flour and baby oil! It runs through your fingers but can also moulded like sand!

My girls are obessed with glow sticks. They will often spend part of their allowance on a bag of these neon sticks from the dollarstore. Over at A Little Learning for 2 they created Glow in the Dark Ring Toss with glow sticks and a few other items you likely have around the house. Not only is this a fun twist on a traditional game but a great way to develop hand eye coordination. 

Learning should be fun for kids! Why not mix a little basic chemistry, coloring mixing and hours of quiet play time? A few weekends ago my girls and I explored dropping colored vinegar onto trays of baking soda. They literally did this for two hours straight! And I'll admit, I enjoyed playing along with them :)

However you decide to spend you day remember to stay present and engaged on your kids. Moments in early childhood are so precious and go by far too quickly!