50 ways to keep your kids busy

Donna Bozzo is a national parenting expert and author of the new upcoming book,  FIDGET BUSTERS 50 WAYS TO KEEP KIDS BUSY SO YOU CAN GET THINGS DONE

GRAPHIC:
Fidget Busters 50 Ways To Keep Kids Busy While You Get Things Done 

DonnaBozzo.com

Whoosh Ball

Now, these were popular in the ‘80s. This Fidget Buster is oh-so-fun to squish and hold and pull and even make. Now you can buy them of course. But, you can also make them, and making them is a fun activity unto itself for kids. 

Just grab a couple handfuls of rubber bands and a pair of scissors for this fun, low-mess activity, and in a few pulls, ties and snips you're ready to play ball. 

What you’ll need:

approximately 100 rubber bands
scissors

Instructions:
Start by stacking your rubber bands, placing them evenly one on top of the other. Pick up the stack, pinch the middle, and secure with a thick rubber band looping it around the stack a couple of times. Snip the loops of each rubber band and whoosh.

Squishy Swishy Goo Bags

So fun for kids to squeeze, run their fingers across, even put the goo bag up against your cheek for a cool touch. The beads add an extra tactile and distracting element as kids can trace and track beads through the goo for focused anti-fidgety fun.  You can buy these, usually in tube form, but they are so easy to make that they’re worth creating on your own.

What you’ll need:

1 cup cornstarch
⅓ cup sugar
4 cups cold water
few drops of food coloring or water soluble tablet
wooden beads
zipper sandwich bags
glue (optional) 

Whisk together cornstarch, sugar, water and food coloring in a saucepan over medium heat until the mixture thickens and solidifies. When it looks like goo or Vaseline remove from heat.  Mix in food coloring.  When it cools, pour the goo into a sandwich bag along with wooden beads. Double bag with another sandwich bag to prevent tears and spills. 

No-cook Variation

Because the recipe involves cooking, it will always involve some parent time in the making. But here’s a shortcut! Skip the stove and pick up a tube of colorful hair gel instead. You get the same ooooooo-oooo goo, but this recipe saves on clean up time. 

Find a theme that strikes your child’s fancy for even more focused fun. Instead of beads, use plastic fish in a bag of blue goo for little marine biologists.  Or miniature cars for racing fans. Try plastic stars and a sun for out of this galaxy play.  Squishy Swishy Goo Bags are also handy for on the go fidget busting. Slide into the back of car seats or slip into toddler bags you have yourself an arsenal of fun.

Homemade Bouncy Ball

Put some bounce in those dull moments and distract them with a homemade bouncy ball. Fun to make I say because it’s so interesting!  Little science lovers will love this gloopy, gloppy, rolling, recipe.  This is easy for kids to make on their own if Mom and Dad don’t mind the creative mess.

What you need:

For each bouncy ball
1 tablespoon white glue
½ teaspoon borax
food coloring
3 tablespoon cornstarch
4 tablespoon warm water
paper towels

In small bowl mix water, cornstarch and borax making sure all the ingredients are thoroughly combined and the cornstarch doesn’t settle on the bottom of the bowl. In another bowl, pour in glue adding food coloring.  Combine the two mixtures mixing together until you form a clump.  Pull out the clump and roll between your hands to form a ball. Dab hands on paper towels occasionally. Keep working until stickiness disappears and you have a smooth bouncy ball.  Let dry.

DIY Dice
I just love dice - they are the ultimate when it comes to killing time.  Plus, they keep little (and big) brains blossoming if you use them to play a math game.  So why not some make your own dice to keep the good times rolling?

What you need:

cube shaped box or styrofoam cube
wiggle eyes, circle shaped stickers, beads

Glue shapes onto each side of your cube to mimic dice and you’re ready to roll!

Ages 4 +
Recommended Ages: 
To Make Independently 5 +
To Play 4 +

Look for Donna’s newest book Fidget Busters 50 Ways To Keep Kids Busy While You Get Things Done on Amazon, Barnes and Nobles – wherever books are sold.