At this age, your child must be a ball of energy! It is absolutely normal for them to get more active, of course, but it's important that you direct that energy into some fun activities that allow you two to Experience More Together – like making a handycraft toy worm out of discarded items, playing hide and seek with the worm and even creating stories around their new toy.
Do you have plastic bottles that you no longer need? Here's what you do – collect the bottle caps and, together with your child, glue them to each other. While waiting for the glue to dry, get your child to make a horn shape with a piece of wire bristle, then paste the horn and some store-bought googly eyes onto the bottle cap at one end. Ta-daa! It's that simple! Now, get your little one to name their new friend!
Now that they've got a new friend, it's time for you and your little one to include the worm in some games. Tell your child to hide the new toy while you close your eyes tightly, then find the hiding place with your child, asking for hints like whether you're "hot" or "cold". Make sure you're always surprised when you find it! And then, of course, switch around and hide the toy for them – but not in a place that's too difficult!
Give the worm a family!
One new friend's great – but many new friends are even better! Create more worms over time and build up you child's wormy family! Once you've got about three worms, you could even start making stories together. Use some cardboard, colored paper and markers to create little backdrops to tell these stories against.
Above all else, always remember to hug them – and their new friends! – tightly every chance you get! And share with us photos of your child's wormy friends!
Other than having fun together, this sort of play will help develop your creativity. Writer and musical parenting expert Amy Robbins-Wilson said on YourTango.com that playing is an effective way to develop one's creativity. Children-books writer, MaryAnn F. Kohl also said that, while making artwork, your child is exercising social and emotional skills that help with communication and problem-solving.
Even hide-and-seek has its benefits! Psychiatrist Dr. Shirah A. Vollmer explained that hide-and-seek became a favorite game to many children because it gives them chances to independently explore the surrounding area. Children also enjoy the thrill of playing the game, making it a good way for them to overcome fears.
The excitement of playing makes your child restless. A nap is a good way to replenish lost energy and is good for growth. In his book How to Raise Your Baby to be Smart Child, Dr. Handrawan Nadesul elaborated that while taking a nap, the growth hormone works more actively. Aside from naps, you may also want to give your child iron-rich food to keep their energy up. Jodi Citrin, nutritionist and president of Citrition, suggested providing them with meat twice a week, as well as iron-rich snacks such as raisin and cereal.