My kids are far apart in ages. 5 and 1/2 years to be exact. (Read all out why we waited to add a sibling) Since my youngest still naps and needs that nap (I need that nap too!) I have to keep my oldest entertained and quiet. On Pinterest one night I came across an idea to keep kids busy with some type of independent activities.
I rummaged through the play room and found so many ‘quiet’ activities that my daughter can do on her own. That’s the important thing. The activities need to be independent. Otherwise, they’ll be in your face asking how to do these things. I was so excited to get started and get going on this Quiet Box idea. I hit up the $1 section at Target and found some great additions that made it even more fun.
I purchased some clear stackable containers. They are bigger than shoe box size but small enough to stack on our IKEA shelf. I purchased 6. I then started organizing the activities and sorting them out between the boxes. I bought 6 so my daughter could have one for every day of the week plus one on the weekend. You certainly don’t have to buy 6. You could start off with maybe 3-4 and rotate them. I labeled mine with sticky notes 1-6 and we rotate. Some people label Monday-Friday but I didn’t want it like that.
Here is box number 1: Make it necklaces, animal kingdom workbook, stencils with paper/colors, dominoes, books on her reading level, and a blend it puzzle.
|Everything fits nice and neat in the box.|
Box number 2: Fairy magnets, 2 easy workbooks ($1 section at Target), magnet game, doodle stencils/paper/pen, build it type activity similar to legos.
Box number 3: All Hello Kitty stuff! I noticed when cleaning out we had a lot of Hello Kitty so I decided to make a box just for that. (this box just might be her favorite!) Hello Kitty stickers, journal, scrapbook, dominoes, matching cards, and books!
Everything fits nice and neat in the box. I do have some flannel boards that are too big for the container. I put all the flannel pieces in the box and then the board is on top so she knows to grab that with the box.These are just examples of what I use and had on hand.
We’ve been using the boxes for a few weeks now. She does love them! There are some boxes she loves more than others so it will be important to change up the activities every once in awhile and maybe add something new! Since baby still takes 2 naps (one short morning and 1 longer afternoon), I tend to have her do something else in the morning like watercolor or playdough and then she has a box for the afternoon. My daughter is 6 and pretty independent so I know what works best for her. If you have a younger child you can add activities according to what they can do. Also, the boxes are ONLY used while baby sleeps. I never let her use them during play time or when she asks. Otherwise, I think they wouldn’t be as special and she’d get bored with them faster. So the boxes are ONLY when the baby is sleeping and she has to follow the rotation system. She will not have the same box she used the day before, even if she has something to finish.
I LOVE the quiet boxes!