Sunday, October 27, 2013

Go on a Safari at Home!

It's been a crazy week! I got out of my groove for posting on the blog because we had to deal with a termite issue in our house. For a few days, the workers were in our house, drilling holes between every tile, along every wall in our house, so they could fill each hole with a repellent. Needless to say, I couldn't exactly find a moment to sit down and do some blogging while trying to keep a toddler from being too curious and listening to drilling noises from 9 am to 5 pm ;-)

Today was our first day back to normal, so I decided to take advantage of having the whole house back to ourselves. I decided to take Little Man on an indoor safari!

The prep time for this enjoyable activity was hardly any time at all. I prepared some binoculars by digging into my large stash of cardboard toilet paper rolls (yes, I'm a toilet paper roll hoarder) and paper clipped 2 sets of tubes together, one pair for me, one for Little Man. You can glue the tubes together if you want, you'll just have to wait for the glue to dry.

While Little Man wasn't paying attention, I took a few of his toy animals and hid them around the house. I decided to use the animals from the book  as my reference because then I would be able to show Little Man a picture of the animal as we were looking for it.

Finally, I dug through his dress-up clothes and found an "explorer's hat" for both him and me. We were all set for a safari!

It didn't take long for Little Man to catch on to what we were doing. I opened up the book and told him we needed to find the gorilla. "Where's the gorilla?" I asked him. I also used the word "monkey", since he's more familiar with that classification. We looked around with our binoculars in search for the gorilla.

We crawled on our hands and knees, we laid down on our bellies and army-crawled, we climbed over ledges and through caves. I worked up quite the sweat but it was worth it to see Little Man's face when we finally found the animal.

We traveled throughout the house until we found all the animals. Then, we sat down and read through all of . This is such a simple yet effective activity that teaches gross motor skills and exploration skills.

I found this activity thanks to a fun new app, Knoala. If you've haven't downloaded this free app, you should! You can set up your account for each of your children. You simply fill in a little information about your child (name/nickname, birthday, gender) and allow the app to get access to your location (if you want) and you instantly have thousands of simple, low-prep activities like this one at your fingertips that are age and weather appropriate!

On top of that, you also have access to child-friendly videos for those moments (while cooking dinner, sitting in a doctor's office, etc) when you just need your child to be entertained while sitting nicely.

You also have a never-ending supply of generated story ideas to tell your children when they request one (i.e. tell a story about an adventure with a kind girl who is invisible).

If you want to check the app out yourself, head on over to!

What are some of your go-to indoor activities you play with your kids? 

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  1. This is such a great idea! I am a nanny and will be looking for things to do with the kiddos I watch once it gets too cold to be outside. This is perfect!

    Visiting from Tell Me Tuesday!


    1. Thanks for stopping by and commenting Alyson! I'm sure the kids will 100% approve of this activity :-)

  • This is such a cute idea. My little one would love this very soon. You have such great mommy ideas I need to just start copying you since my little guy is around the same age. Thanks for the idea!

    1. Copy away, Deonna! When I was a teacher, we had a saying, "beg, borrow, and steal." Starting out with not very much in my classroom and a low salary, I found myself begging for extra supplies, borrowing other teachers manipulative, and stealing ideas ;-) Though sometimes, I did unintentionally steal pens and staplers on occasion ...

  • This is a lovely idea. I took my kids to Paris once in our living room, they painted an eiffel tower on the back of spare wallpaper, we had french food, learnt to say hello to each other in french etc. It was loads of fun. My kids also used to like acting out a story with toys as I read it to them, Owl babies was a favourite for this, they had a toy owl each and said the lines when it was there bit. (did I explain that right?) Of course that was all about 10 years ago now but we all still remember, enjoy your precious special times, they grow up fast!

    1. Julia, that is one the cutest ideas I've ever heard. I love that you even painted the eiffel tower! Your kids are so fortunate to have you as a mother :-) And you explained the story telling activity perfectly. Thanks for sharing some more ideas with me!