Plan Your Day Around Play.

Plan Your Day Around Play

I am enamored with my four year old. He is authentically four.

Eli-BW-SkateboardHe lives in the moment. He relishes every rainstorm. He is equally delighted with beetles. He forgets his shoes. He takes pride in his hand-me-down skateboard.


My Screen Free Spree isn’t because I’m the world’s best screen-free mom. I’m blogging about it because I need  help to remember to plan my day around play. The kind of day where this perfect four year old can get dirty.

Eli Skateboard

I want these kids to have an authentic childhood of backyard boredom that leads to backyard inventions. They need skinned knees and garden tomatoes. Zoning into a screen can’t do this for my kids.

[Oh, it’s also for all of those health reasons I ranted about in this post.]

I’m working on keeping our screen time to the recommended two hours. It isn’t always easy. I’m getting better at redirecting them to an activity they love. I busted out previously hidden art supplies that I reserved for Big P when the others were napping. I now have a gallery of black India ink-covered rocks, baseballs, and kitchen tiles. The gallery extends to my fridge where I have brilliant oil pastels creations.

2014-06-19 14.55.02india-ink

Thanks for joining us.

Here’s a round up of some easy play we did last week that didn’t involve buying anything new.

  1. Bike Wash. They thought it was really cool to wash their own bikes. You could easily do this with toy cars or your actual car.
  2. Playdough Restaurant (I really like this recipe) I sent the kids outside for this one. The cleanup was really fast and they loved it.
  3. UpCycle Boxes. Give them any box (cereal, shoes, produce, etc.) and invite them to turn it into something new. It helps to have tape, markers, and other random household things within reach. My kids really like straws, pipe cleaners, skewers, feathers, and metal washers.
  4. Fort Building. I like to use flat sheets because they are light-weight. Help them get started, and then let them loose.
  5. Laugh Together. Spend time telling and learning new jokes. Knock Knock Jokes are a favorite at our house. We also picked some funny read-alouds. We are working through The BFG and poetry by Jack Prelutsky.


Don’t miss my latest post at LiveWell Colorado that includes some strategies to include play in any day – even the crazy, busy ones.

One Reply to “Plan Your Day Around Play.”

  1. As a young mother I believed that part of my being a feminist meant that I had the right to be home with my kids. It was a blessing (and hard sometimes, too). This post brought back so many happy memories, esp. doing art with my kids. I love your inventions and creative ideas, Alli, not to mention your fabulous recipes! xo

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