Information for Child Care Providers
Activity Ideas for Toddlers
Sara Gable, Ph.D.,
Human Development and Family Studies,
College of Human Environmental Sciences, University of Missouri
Extension, with help from:
Dombro, Amy Laura, Colker, Laura
J., & Dodge, Diane Trister. (1999).
The Creative Curriculum for Infants
and Toddlers. Washington, DC: Teaching Strategies, Inc.
Marzollo, Jean. (1977).
Supertot. New York,
NY: Harper & Row Publishers.
Creative Activities: Keep them
- Deodorant bottle painting on
different kinds of paper, like newspaper, grocery sacks, or
- Handprint painting – use
paint-soaked sponges in meat trays to keep down the mess.
- Tissue paper shapes dipped in
liquid starch and arranged on paper plates.
- Junk mail return address labels
and old envelopes or pieces of mail.
- Painting with thick-handled,
short bristle brushes at a table-top easel.
Motor Activities: Toddlers love
to keep busy.
- Playdough and simple kitchen
- Dropping game and carrying game
- Simple puzzles
- Bean bags and buckets
- Blow bubbles against a mirror
- Appliance boxes for crawling in
- Felt shapes, felt body parts,
and a felt board
- Cardboard building blocks
- Cloth tunnel for crawling
- Push/pull toys, shape sorters,
and nesting cups
- Cobblers bench
Sensory Activities: Provide
opportunities for clean "messy" play!
- Bathtub blocks in tubs of water
- Piles of shredded paper with
- Outdoor painting with water
- Tubs of water with measuring
cups and spoons
- Bathing baby dolls
- Rubber ducks in tubs of water
- Lots of little pieces of masking