A great indoor or outdoor (weather permitting) activity for toddlers and preschoolers is pretending to be animals. Pretending to be animals can encourage motor planning, strength, balance and coordination. It also provides an opportunity for pretend play, social skills, and problem solving. Parents can play too and might even be surprised by how much exertion it takes to move like an animal! Here are some fun ways to start:
- Crab walk: Start in a sitting position with your arms behind you. Keeping your hands and feet on the floor, lift your bottom and scuttle around using your hands and feet.
- Snake slithering: Lie on your belly and use your arms and legs to propel yourself forward on the ground.
- Kangaroo hops: Place both hands in front and hop on two feet wherever your go.
- Duck waddle: Squat all the way down and place your hands on your hips. Waddle around in this position, low to the ground.
- Penguin Waddle: Stand on two feet with your arms down by your sides. Bend your wrists up as the wings. Waddle around by walking around on your heels.
- Elephant walk: While walking on two feet, bend over at the waist and grasp your hands. Use your arms for the elephant’s trunk and swing it back and forth as you walk.
- Bear crawl: Walk on your hands and feet by moving the right arm with the right leg and vice versa.
- Wheelbarrow walk: Although this isn’t an animal, it fits in well with the other activities. Hold onto your child’s legs and help them walk on their hands.