30 simple play activity ideas for toddlers and preschoolers
Play Activities

30 Simple Play Activity Ideas for Toddlers and Preschoolers

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Kids are just so full of energy. I have a toddler and mashaAllah, ever since he started walking, he is always on the move. He is constantly exploring and looking for something new. Having a list of simple play activity ideas like this for my toddler is a great help!

Let me be honest with you, he rarely plays with his toys and finds the weirdest things to play with. Shoes, keys, the remote control. And don’t even get me started with the phone. I’m sure you can relate.

So it probably won’t be a good idea to buy them more toys. Just grab the things you already have at home and make something fun out it. This is what this list of play activity ideas is all about. I have tried some of these activities and my boy had lots of fun. Enjoy!

Are you still struggling to find something for your kids to do? 

7 Days of Play

You don’t need a ton of ideas. 
A whole week of play ideas, that can be done over and over again.
Download this FREE mini-ebook with 7 play activity plans from our free resource library.

Super Easy Play Ideas for preschoolers and toddlers

So here are 30 simple play activity ideas that you can do with your toddlers or preschoolers!

#1 Drawing with cars

Tape a marker to your kid’s toy car and lay out a drawing block for some scribbling fun.

Inspired by Clare’s little tots

#2 Sensory Play in a Tray

Get a tray and put anything in it from jelly to spaghetti to even shaving cream. The whole point is for them to use their five senses as they interact and explore the materials.

Inspired by Nurture Store

#3 Building 3D shapes with Ice Cream Sticks and Playdough

Craft stick and play dough activity

Get some ice cream sticks and playdough to create a structure out of them. If your kids are not developmentally ready for that, let them lead the play to make anything with ice cream sticks and playdough.

Inspired by In the playroom

#4 Pasting Stickers to lines

Scribble some lines, draw a picture or write alphabets in large. Then, get them to paste small round stickers along the lines.

Inspired by Busy Toddler

#5 Cutting Busy Box

Fill a box with small pieces of paper with scribbled lines (straight lines, wiggly, zigzag, etc.) for them to cut along.

Inspired by a crafty living

#6 Painting on cotton wool

Get some cotton wool and fluff it up in a tray or plate and give your kids some watercolor and a paintbrush to color the wool.

Inspired by Growing a Jeweled Rose

#7 Scooping beans

Fill a container with dried beans and prepare some empty containers or an ice cube tray, and spoons for them to explore through scooping.

Inspired by Teaching Special Thinkers

#8 Picking up blocks with tongs

Get a pair of tongs and challenge your kids to pick up blocks to transfer to different containers. You can even engage your kids in dramatic play by pretending to play cooking.

Inspired by Hands on as we grow

#9 Drawing on a cardboard box

What do you do with empty cardboard boxes? Give your kids markers, crayons or whatever drawing tools for them to having some scribbling fun.

Inspired by my mommy style

#10 Sweep to the box

Make a square on the floor with colored tape, cut pieces of paper and grab the broom. Get your child to sweep the paper pieces in the box.

Inspired by Pinterest

#11 Pasta threading

Fill a container with some pasta with holes (e.g. penne, macaroni) and prepare some strings for your kids to do some threading.

Inspired by Laughing Kids Learn

#12 Wrapping toys in Aluminium foil

Wrap toys in an aluminum foil and get them to unwrap it. Get them to guess the toys to make it into a game.

Inspired by Clare’s Little Tots

#13 Painting with Animals

If you have miniature toy animals and paint, you are set. Lay out your drawing block and have them make footprints with the animals.

Inspired by Adventures and Play

#14 Shredded Paper Construction play

To set up, get some construction vehicles and tear some newspaper or used paper and place it in a tray. You can also get your child to help you tear (a great activity to develop their fine motor skills). Keep the shredded paper in a Ziploc bag to reuse.

Inspired by Pinterest

#15 Paper tunnels for car play

Paper tunnel

All you need are paper, tape and some toy cars. Shape the paper into an arc and paste the sides to the ground to make a tunnel.

Inspired by mama papa bubba

#16 Tape Peeling

Paste some strips of tape on a smooth surface such as glass or a metal baking sheet to set up. This activity is great for younger kids to develop their fine motor skills.

Inspired by Hands on as we grow

#17 Ball track with toilet paper rolls

Get some used toilet paper rolls and tape it to your wall to make a track. Give your kids  some pompoms to let it run through the paper rolls

Inspired by Educational Subjects

#18 Straw Station

Get a bunch of used straw and cut them into pieces or have your kids cut them to be placed into a tray. Your kids can thread the straw pieces in a string or simply let them lead the play.

Inspired by Busy toddler

#19 Painting with water

Painting with water toddler activity

Get some colored paper, water and a paintbrush for them to do some painting with water. No need to worry about stains or too much mess.

Inspired by Tales of a Teacher mom

#20 Alphabet scoop

Fill a deep tray or large container with water and drop some magnetic alphabets in it. You can have your kids scoop the letters with a spoon, or have them pick it up with a pair of tongs. A great way to learn alphabets!

Inspired by planning playtime

#21 Eggshell smash

Cooked some eggs? Keep the eggshells and wash them clean. Then simply lay them out on a kitchen towel, and get a toy hammer (or a spoon if you don’t have any) for some smashing fun. It’ll be a great hit with your kids!

Inspired by Raising Dragons

#22 Sprinkles Challenge

Draw a shape (square, circle, etc.) on the middle of a paper and place it in a tray. Pour sprinkles all over, and give your kids a brush to sweep the sprinkles into the shape.

Inspired by Raising Dragons

#23 Ice Cream Sticks and Paper roll

Tape a paper roll on the wall, and have your little toddlers drop ice cream sticks in them.

Ice cream stick activity for toddlers

I didn’t have empty toilet rolls so I got an empty carton, made a hole at the bottom.

Inspired by Moments with miss

#24 Pouring water station

Get a deep tray or a baby bathtub, fill them up with water and lay out some cups and containers for them to explore.

Inspired by Busy Toddler

#25 Cup Stacking Game

Get a stack of cups and stack them up into a pyramid.

Inspired by Million ways mom

#26 Hanging Clothes

Tie a line between 2 chairs, give them some pegs and socks to hang. A great way to engage them is to encourage dramatic play, by getting them into the role where they can pretend to play house.

Inspired by How Wee Learn

#27 Cotton bud tracing

Draw some shapes or write some letters with a marker on a piece of paper, get some cotton buds and paint for them to trace.

Inspired by my baby doo

#28 Rubberband and toilet roll

This is an easy activity to set up and good for developing fine motor skills. Simply provide some rubber bands for them to tie onto the toilet roll.

Inspired by Craftulate

#29 Tracing with loose items

Draw some lines and have your kids line up loose items (e.g buttons, beads, beans) to trace the lines.

Inspired by Learning for kids

#30 Pegs and a box

Simply have your kids clip the pegs around a box. Another activity that’s great for developing fine motor skills.

Inspiration: Pinterest


Are you still struggling to find something for your kids to do? 7 Days of Play

You don’t need a ton of ideas. 
A whole week of play ideas, that can be done over and over again.


If you like this post, don’t forget to spread the good and share it with your friends!
What is your kid’s favourite play activity? Comment below to share.


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30 simple play activity ideas for toddlers and preschoolers

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