Balance Like a Flamingo
A flamingo is a bright pink bird that can stand on one leg! Show your child how to balance like a flamingo. Bend one knee and lift it up while standing on the other leg.
Hold your child’s hands if they need help balancing. Try to balance on the right leg. Then try to balance on the left leg.
You can say,
- Baby flamingos need practice, too.
Help your child balance on one leg and hold the other leg straight out in front. Be sure to try this with each leg. Help them balance while they stand on their tip toes.
Balancing is a fun and great way to build strength and concentration with your child!
Choose a ball that is big enough for your child to see but not so big that it is scary to catch. It should be lightweight, too. A small beach ball is great if you have one.
At first your child will catch the ball in their arms.
Help them to make a basket with their arms. Show them how to hold their arms out towards you. Their hands should be close together and their elbows bent. Tell them this makes a basket for catching the ball.
Place the ball in their arms a couple of times so they get the feel of it. Then step back a little bit. Say,
- Are you ready? and gently toss the ball into their arms.
If the ball is too small it will fall through your child’s arms. If it is too big it might be hard to hold. You can step back more as they get more comfortable catching the ball.
You can let a little air out of the ball to make it easier to catch. When a ball is full of air it can bounce off your child’s hands and arms.
It takes two to play catch and you are the perfect partner for your child. Learning to catch takes time and patience.
When your child becomes better at catching they will use their hands to catch. You can try a smaller ball but it should always be lightweight until they are older.
Buy or make a big batch of bubble mixture!
Your child will love chasing and popping bubbles. They can walk, run, or jump up to pop bubbles. Or they can wait until the bubbles land on the ground to stomp them. Help your child to count how many bubbles they pop.
Ask your child to catch a bubble in their hands. To do this they will need to watch the bubble. You can say,
- Watch the bubble float down to your hands.
Bubble recipe: Mix one part dish washing liquid with three parts of water.
Show your child how to start and stop dancing. Have them start dancing when you start to play music or sing a song. Then have them “freeze” when the music or singing stops. Ask your child if they can hold their body still until music starts again.
If your child keeps dancing say, Freeze! They will learn to stop with the music with some practice.
Talk about their Freeze Dance moves.
- Are your arms in the air?
- Are your knees bent?
- Is it hard to stand on one leg?
Let your child stop and start the music while you dance. Do extra silly dance moves. Your child will love seeing you Freeze!
Follow the Leader
Play Follow the Leader to help your child practice basic movement skills and to try new ones. Start by doing simple movements together.
- Touch toes
- Wave arms
- Clap hands
- Jump up
- I am the leader. Do what I do!
If there is room try walking, marching, jumping forward, hopping on one foot, or swinging arms.
Take turns. Say,
- It is your turn to be the leader. I’ll follow you.
Follow the Leader can be a fun game to play with family or friends. Your three year old might not get all the moves right but they will have fun trying.