keeping little siblings busy

How to Handle Homeschooling with Little Ones

My youngest had her birthday last week and a friend gave her some money for something she needs. What we honestly need are some new things to keep her entertained and engaged during homeschooling and work time.

The toys that were exciting last spring are not now. I have found the best way to deal with little ones while homeschooling is to get them engaged in hands on activities that are low mess and quiet.

While my Lovie-Lu will spend a good hour dancing with her musical dog that jumps around so his bells jingle (thank you, Grammy) it really is not something I want her doing when we are trying to work.

Likewise, her love of sitting on my lap and listening to me read the same story over and over and over and over, again, is sweet but not really helpful when I need to focus on anything but her sweet little face.

Over the years, we have accumulated a number of preschool toys and activities. Some of them are tried and true; others sounded good but quickly were discarded. I’ve made a list of our favorites and additional items I hope to add to our collection.

Great chance to use some of those gift cards from Christmas to get a great start back to school after the new year.

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This little toy even calls to me to spend some time lacing patterns and finding relaxation in the simple threading. Well made and easy to use it is a treat for every age.

These are great for so many purposes. They can be manipulatives for math, teach patterns, be used to create artistic expression, and are just plain fun.

Measuring cups are perfect for play and learning. Stacking, scooping, filling with water, and learning to measure are just some of the ways we use our trusty set. My youngest can stand at the sink filling and dumping cups for extended periods of time. It is my go to distraction when I need to get work done.

Magnet play is an easy and quiet. It’s can be done anywhere with a metal cookie sheet or magnetic white board. These magnets are nice and big, have no parts that can be swallowed and are very durable.

Sidewalk chalk is not only easier to handle than crayons but also easier to clean up if the little artist goes rogue. We use ours on chalkboards, chalkboard paper, and the driveway when the weather is nice.

These are a new favorite. Lovie Lu really enjoys painting. While I am all for artistic expression, it doesn’t help with me working with the other children if I have to supervise the paint, water, and brushes the whole time. These allow her to paint easily without spilling or drying out.

We also do painting with water on construction paper. It is fairly mess free and enjoyable.

Here are some things I hope to add to our collection for spring schooling.

Some new, toddler friendly crayons would be wonderful and these rocks are so cute.

These river rocks are a little pricey but I think they would be a great way to get in some exercise and adventure even when the weather is poor.

I haven’t decided which one of these I want but these look like they would supply not only hours of fun, but some practical skills, as well.

We already have some lacing beads but could use more laces. This is a nice set for a great price.

Do you have any suggestions? How do you keep your littles occupied while the older students are doing school work?

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