Activities for Kids Archives | Page 6 of 7 | Imperfect Homemaker

Category Archives for Activities for Kids

Personalized Back to School Supplies with Duck Tape®

This post brought to you by Walmart. All opinions are 100% mine.

I think I've been more excited about school starting than my kids have.  I have made school supply lists about a million times.  We finally had the chance to get out to Walmart this week and actually buy the stuff on the list!

One of the things I needed was binders for the kids to keep their seatwork assignments in.  But I'm cheap.  It kills me to pay 4 or 5 dollars for a binder when the one for 92 cents does the same thing.  The only problem is that the cheap ones are boring and drab.  

It was so easy to fix that with Duck Tape®!  

First we accented the pockets of J's binder with the camouflage he had picked out and added his initials to the front.  So quick and easy, but he couldn't have been more thrilled!

Personalized Back to School Supplies with Duck Tape

For miss K, we used the polka dot tape she had picked out and made a pocket to hold all the itty bitty pieces from her various preschool activities.  This will go in her notebook, which of course we had to personalize with her initial too.


I'm sure these projects aren't the only thing they'll be using their Duck Tape® for!  They have been cutting pieces off and sticking them everywhere!  I guess since their dad uses it as bandages, they figure they can use it for pretty much anything too!


Have you made your inevitable trip to Walmart for school supplies yet?  You might want to consider grabbing a couple rolls of Duck Tape® too!  It's an easy way to make a happy kid! buy Duck Tape at Walmart

Need more ideas for using your Duck Tape®  (besides having your kids stick it in random places all over the house)?  Follow @TheDuckBrand for tons of creative inspiration!

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Staying Fit as a Family This Summer

The middle of the summer often makes it difficult to stay fit due to the temptation to stay inside out of the heat.

Here are some great fitness activities that will make the summer memorable and bring you closer together as a family:

Staying Fit as a Family This Summer

  • Park and Yard Games – Footballs and Frisbees can get you moving if you have access to an open, grassy space. Many neighborhood parks have activities the whole family will enjoy.
  • Swimming – If you don’t have an in-ground swimming pool; an above-ground pool can be purchased fairly inexpensively and is a great way to stay cool and fit in a little exercise.  A lake is also a great place to picnic and swim.
  • Hiking – It’s likely that you have some hiking trails near your home. Hiking can be a great workout and can be educational by pointing out certain plants, insects and birds you can enjoy.
  • Family Team Sports – Putting up a basketball or volleyball net can add fun to your family summer. If you have a large family, it’s especially nice to have a good, old-fashioned “It’s ON” game. Don’t forget to help out the younger ones and help them interact.
  • Bicycling – This is a sport the entire family can enjoy while getting the best exercise. If you have smaller children or babies, there are carriers available for the bicycles. Search for some bicycle trails in your area – and don’t forget to wear a helmet.
  • Water Games – You don’t have to have a swimming pool to get wet and cool and enjoy a summer day. A simple sprinkler will do – or take it a step further and purchase one of the inexpensive water ‘toys’ to play with.
  • Plant a Garden – The entire family can participate in tending a garden.  Even the youngest children can help with watering, weeding, and harvesting.

You don’t have to venture far from home to experience summer fitness and fun. A little research and some imagination and creativeness on your part will ensure that everyone has a great summer without becoming a couch potato.


What are your favorite summer activities that will keep the whole family active?


What to Do When Potty Training Isn’t Working

What to do when potty training isn't working!

You've read the books, printed the charts, and bought the prizes.  You've got your game plan, and you're ready to get your child potty trained!

But it doesn't work.  Your game plan is a total failure, and consequently you feel like a failure as a mom.

The questions swirl in your mind:

Did I read the wrong book?  Maybe I should have taken a more gradual approach instead of trying to do this all in one weekend?  Did I not give him enough to drink?  Maybe I gave him too much?  Should I have tried the “run around naked” technique?  Maybe the designs on her Pull-up weren't fun enough.  Maybe she'd rather earn pennies for going potty instead of m&m's.  Maybe I'm switching up techniques too much.  I need to be more consistent, but what if I pick the wrong technique and I'm consistent at something that's never going to work?

In frustration, you wonder what the “magic key” to getting your child potty trained is.  Every book and blog post seems to offer it, but none of them seem to work for you.

Moms, I have been there.  I have thought those thoughts.  I have wondered what in the world was wrong with me that I was too dumb to figure out how to potty train a kid.

Can I tell you something?  Relax.

When that kid is ready, they will go.  If they sense that you are uptight about the whole thing, they will be uptight about it too.  If they feel like you are trying to “make” them do it, I can guarantee you their rebellious side will rear its ugly head and you will have created an even bigger problem.

I'm giving you permission to keep changing those diapers.  Don't stress out and beat yourself over the head for not doing things right.

If you want to take the diapers off and let them make messes, go ahead.  (By the way, that really did make a big difference in motivating my kids to go on the potty.)  But if that's going to stress you out, don't do it just because the book said that's how to do it.  Go buy those Pull-ups and don't worry about it one little bit.

If you want to print the potty charts and give them prizes when they go, that's great.  But don't get frustrated if that's not what works for your child.  I promise, when they are ready, it will be easy.

The most stress-free strategy for potty-training is the simple strategy of patience.

If you're a mom who has potty-trained her child in a weekend, I applaud you.  I really do.  I'm not saying it doesn't come easy for some moms.  (Here's  a great book that teaches you the Potty Train in a Weekend method.  Can't hurt to try if you're up for it!)

But I know there are plenty of moms where that's not the case.  And if you're one of them, I want to let you know it's okay.  You're not a failure.  You will get your child potty trained.  Relax, don't worry about it, and one day you'll realize your child is potty trained almost without your realizing it.

Have you ever had a child who was hard to potty train?  What did you do about it?  Share your experiences in the comments below!

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50 Fun and Free Summer Activities for Kids


Great List of free summer activities for kids

Summer is here!  It's great for a few days…until you hear the inevitable “I'm booored!”

This free 20 page eBook will give you 50 ideas for things to keep your kids occupied this summer – and they're all free!

To get your eBook, simply enter your name and email address below.  The eBook will be delivered to your inbox – check your spam folder if you don't see it.

*By signing up to receive this eBook, you will also be signing up for the Kids Activities segment of my newsletter, where I will send very infrequent but always exciting stuff for your kids!*


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25 Free Fall Outdoor Activities for Kids

free fall activities for kids


Fall weather makes me want to be outside as much as possible.  The weather is absolutely gorgeous, and I know that winter will be here soon.

Here are 25 free things kids (and adults!) can do to spend time outside in the fall.  All of these might not be 100% free – for instance, some require gasoline to get to a location – but for the most part these will all be pretty much no-cost.



1. Go hiking.  Visit a nature trail in your city or a state park.

2. Go on a fall scavenger hunt.  Make a list of various fall items (acorns, leaves, rocks, etc.) and see who can find everything on their list first.

3. Go on a picnic.  Even if it's only on a blanket in the backyard, a picnic is a nice way to get in some more outdoor time enjoying the weather.

4. Go bird-watching.  Head outside with some binoculars and a bird book and see how many of your native birds you can identify.

5. Go on a walking tour. Map out and visit historical sites in your town.  Pack a lunch and make a day of it.

6. Participate in nature programs.  Some cities and park systems offer free nature programs for children.

7. Check out the community calendar.  Check online to find free events in your community and the surrounding area.

8. Go geocaching.

9. Make a nature collection.  Let the kids see how many interesting leaves, rocks, acorns, or bugs they can find.

10. Go on a bike ride.

11. Go to the beach.  If you can make a trip, fall is an incredible time to go to the beach.  The weather is still warm (many times it's warm enough to even swim), but lodging rates are greatly reduced and crowds are almost nonexistent.

12. Go camping in the backyard.

13. Help out a neighbor. Do some yard work for someone who could use the help.

14. Rake leaves and jump in them.

15. Read a book.  Reading is a great way to spend an afternoon, but it's even more enjoyable when you're outside enjoying the gorgeous weather.

16. Take digital photos.  Don't just take pictures of the kids.  Let them use the camera to take pictures of anything they find interesting.

17. Go on a hayride.

18. Go star-gazing.

19. Visit the playground.  Playgrounds are not very crowded in the fall since most kids are busy with school-related activities, but the weather is perfect for playing outside.

20. Pick up trash.  Gear everyone up with gloves and a trash bag, pick a road, and start beautifying your city.

21. Visit a local farm.

22. Play football or another outdoor sport.

23. Go to the pumpkin patch.

24. Go apple picking.

25.  I'm sure there's one more, but I can't think of it!  What are your ideas for free ways kids can enjoy the fall weather?


Free fall outdoor activities for kids

15 (More) Independent Activities for One-Year-Olds

My first post on 15 Independent Activities for One-Year-Olds has been the most popular post on Imperfect Homemaker.  I figure there must be lots of other moms who are in the same boat that I am and need something that will occupy their little ones for a while!  I decided to round up some more ideas for all of us that are age-appropriate for one-year-olds and can be done independently by the child.

New!  If you like this post, you will love my brand new eBook, 101 Independent Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers

101 Independent Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Note:  If you click a picture or the link under the pictures, you will be taken to the blog where these ideas originated from.  If you'd like to pin a specific picture, please pin from the blog where the idea was originally posted.

Here goes!

ball play

1. Playing with balls of various textures
household articles

2. Exploring household articles
Sticky Table 3. Sticky Table Musical Pots 4. Musical Pots Cardboard Tunnel  5. Cardboard box tunnel         Felt Board 6. Felt board play Homemade Drum 7. Homemade Drum Busy Board 8. Homemade Busy BoardPom pom tube

9. Pom poms and cardboard tubes (if this activity is going to be unsupervised, I think it would be best to replicate this idea with larger sized balls that won't fit into the child's mouth.)

Connect Four

10. Connect Four (without the rules of course!)

Water painting

11. Water Painting

Emptying baskets

12. Emptying baskets

 jars and lids

13. Jars and lids

ball pit

14. Homemade ball pit

Toys for one-year-olds

15. Toys!  There are lots of toys that you can buy that are educational, and you don't have to take the time to make anything.  Here's my list of 10 toys for one-year olds.

What activities do you use for your little ones when you need them to play by themselves?

Also See:

Additional activities:



oneyear-old toys

The ultimate resource:

Kids play at day care. Two toddler children build tower of colorful wooden blocks. Child playing with toy train. Educational toys for preschool and kindergarten.

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