Rainy Day Activities

I love winter, I love it when we have crisp cold mornings and snow and frost; but where I live all I’m getting at the moment is rain.

During school hours I’m often stuck at home having to entertain my toddler tornado, this isn’t too bad when it’s not raining as I can take small one out; but when it is (and the North Wales weather never does anything in half measures) I’m really stuck with ideas for activities to do with him.

So I thought that this month I’d write about my favourite top 5 Babipur rainy day activities to do at home with your Smalls.

All but one of the toys I’m writing about today are toys I’ve owned for at least a year. Some of them I’ve had for nearly three; and despite pieces going missing and the odd bit here and there getting a bit battered; they’re still tried and tested favourites.

Plan Toys Balancing Boat

This is the oldest game I own from Babipur, I got it about 3 years ago when my eldest was small and it was an instant hit.

The game is wonderful, simple in design but the way it is intended to be played with offers a challenge to smaller children which is great because it gets them thinking, promotes problem solving, and finely tunes those motor skills.

The balancing boat is a great game to play as a family. You roll the dice and whatever colour you get you choose an animal in the corresponding colour to balance on the boat. The trick is getting them all to balance using the tweezers provided.

You don’t have to use the tweezers, like most plan toys games there isn’t a ‘set’ way to play, rather there are suggestions on how the game can be played.

With or without the tweezers, the game is fun and challenging to play. Those animals put up a fight when it comes to being stacked, and if you leave one side too heavy the boat will tilt and the animals will topple. Our tweezers went walkabouts a long time ago, but it’s still a great game to play together; and it’s great as well for teaching children patience and to wait for their turn.

My eldest was not even two when he got this game, and not being the most dexterous of children, I was amazed at how incredibly well his balancing and fine motor skills became after playing just a couple of games.

Plan Toys Alphabet A-Z & Cards

I think out of all our activities this definitely has to be my favourite!

I got this last year for Plan toys week and I was so glad I did! I’d had my eye on it for a while and so the minute I had the means to get it I did. I love this set, I really do; I love the bright colours and chunkiness of the letters. The cards are fantastic because they have the letter with a corresponding picture on one side, and on the other they have a simple black outline letter with directional arrows inside to show children how to write it.

It really is fantastic, and both of my children have loved it and never refused to play it (which is amazing considering they quite often get quickly bored with letter and spelling games- I talk from experience *sighs*)

But this game is fab and an excellent way to introduce children to basic ABC work, or as a way to help children who know their lowercase ABC’s to work on their uppercase ones.

I really hope Plan Toys bring out a lower case version in the future *cough, cough, hint hint *

Bajo Mendelsons

Ahhh I love these guys. We got them last summer and they are fab. I remember when our set arrived, I had my dad staying with us and we got so into playing with them that my kids got fed up and went off to do something else while they waited their turn!

They really are so addictive! And there are so many cool and precarious structures you can make with them! The Mendelson pieces can all connect together or balance off / on one another in a number of different ways, so it gets incredibly addictive trying to find different ways to use them.

Once my poor kids actually got to have a go they loved them too, and even now this is a game I often bring out when we are at home for the day. It’s also a really lovely team building exercise as you and your child can help each other stack the people, or devise new ways to stack them together.

Plan Toys Balancing Cactus

I am seriously yet to find a single person who doesn’t like this game. And I know a fair few people who own it. This game is so simple and yet it’s so enjoyable . The trick is to balance all of the pieces in a way that they don’t make the base topple over. Simple for us adults right? Not so much for the little ones, but that’s great- because it challenges them to think, it encourages problem solving and learning about even weight distribution.

My youngest just *could not* grasp the idea when he first got this game, he would simply hold the base and stack all of the pieces on top of each other to create one very tall, segmented tower before it would all come crashing down.

But you know what? That’s fine- that was *his* way of playing it, it kept him happy and entertained and so I was happy.

We’ve had this over a year now, and he knows how to play it ‘the right way’ which is great because it keeps him occupied and challenged, never a bad thing!

Plan Toys Marble Ball Run

This is our newest addition, my youngest got this for Christmas and has loved it. It’s a fantastic and fun activity to do with your children.

What I like about this game is that all of the pieces aren’t pre- assembled , you have to sort the columns and attach them to run yourself. This in itself is a cool little activity to include your little one in, as they get to learn that a lot of the time you have to put the effort in to get something cool at the end; and the marble run really is a *cool* toy.

I’d love to get the next version up from his set as it has even more pieces and I can imagine some very cool set ups being created!

Another fab game with endless play value, win!

Thanks for reading, these games have been absolute life savers for me on days when I’m housebound, and it’s great to get to write about them and gush about how cool they are! I hope this helps you on those dreaded rainy days, and offers some new and fun activities for you and your children!

Huge thanks to Emily for sharing her rainy day activities with us xx

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