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A lot of nannies are still working during the Covid-19 crisis so I thought it might be helpful to compile a list of activities to do indoors. 
My two are still pretty young so my thoughts are all based on preschool ages – of course a lot of these can be adapted for older children! 
 
Please feel free to comment on this article with your own suggestions – especially for older ones. Another nanny could use the inspiration! 
Millie and her robot 
 
Painting: 
Potato / going old veg printing 
Bog standard paintbrushes 
Finger painting 
Use loo rolls to bend into shapes and print the edge pattern 
Hand and foot painting 
 
Playdoh: 
You can make your own using 1 cup of flour, half a cup of salt, and add half a cup of water slowly. Knead it, separate into balls and add food colouring (5-10 drops) to each! 
 
This recipe is similar to salt dough so once your charges have made a shape they love, you can bake it to go hard (lowest oven temp possible, for 3-4 hours) to keep it! 
 
You can make a softer version with 1 cup of cornflour and half a cup of conditioner – a bit more like cloud dough! 
 
Baking: 
We’ve made endless cookies and fairy cakes in the last month. I also try to get them to help make meals where age appropriate. Home made pizzas are always a winner. We've got a great pizza recipe here
 
Junk modelling: 
Use up that recycling! We’ve made rockets, a robot (accompanying photo below!) and a fish tank out of a box, with tissue paper sea and fish hanging from string at the top. 
 
Mask making: 
Easter Bunny anyone? 
 
Colour sorting: 
If you have some ball pit balls, colour code some boxes (painting activity…) and sort the balls into the correct colour box. Throwing practice too! 
 
Have you got a tuff tray?  
I adore ours. We use it for everything as it’s a great height for crafts – my two love water play, washing their toy animals, shaving foam, rice and pasta play (although they’re luxury items at present!) 
 
Threading:  
Either pasta necklaces, or pipe cleaners into a colander – make an alien hat! 
 
Chuck them in the garden!  
Help with gardening, make a dinosaur land out of an overgrown flowerbed (I am not a gardener) with this beautiful weather we’ve done a lot of washing their playhouse /little tykes car, as well as general sand and water play. 
 
Rock painting: 
Although advice is not to leave them for others to find, given the risk of transferring the virus on the rock. But perhaps start a collection in the garden! 
 
Chalk drawing: 
Our street has a lot of decorated rainbow driveways at present. Or draw a hopscotch on the pavement outside their home – you’ll be amazed how many passers by will get involved, kids and adults alike! 
 
Painting the fence  
With water only! 
 
Board games: 
Millie is a big fan of the Orchard ones, eg spotty dogs 
 
Flash cards: 
I’m trying not to focus on the educational stuff, as mine are so young, but Millie was learning a lot at preschool so flash cards are a fun way to build on that 
 
Toy dinosaurs: 
On a sunny day, line toy dinosaurs along the edge of a large piece of paper, so the sun makes their shadows on the paper. Draw around the shadows! 
 
Tree rubbing: 
In the garden 
 
Leaf collecting: 
Again in the garden to avoid possible exposure, to make a collage 
 
Other Ideas: 
Hide and Seek 
Build a fort 
Read Stories 
Cutting and sticking, drawing, card making, whatever you have in the craft cupboard 
 
Please do comment with your additions! 
 
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On 14th April 2020 at 09:39, Katie Bigg wrote:
I love these idea's.

I have been making mini animals and creatures with pipe cleaners with the eldest boy out of pipe cleaners. We found lots of ideas on pinterest and once you get the hang of it you really can use your imagination and all you need is googley eyes, pipe cleaners and glue. So far we have made a turtle, dog, mouse, snake, sea urchin, octopus and lizard. His sister has made a theatre so they can put on a play!
On 13th April 2020 at 14:34, Melanie Hettle wrote:
Love these ideas! Wish mine were as crafty lol!
I've been doing a lot of things with Layla in prep for school in Sept...When shes in the right mood. Like sharing out coins or toys into equal piles, counting as we go. Eye spy - something beginning with *phonic sound*. Writing numbers in circles and asking her to count the right number of coins into the circle to match the number. Rhyming games - pictures of words and asking which ones rhyme (phonics play has open access atm and this game is on there). Practising writing her name, now beginning with proper letter formation for easier letters. She loves it! We've also played describing games as set by her pre school in their learning from home exercises they are sending - e.g. going to the cat and using words to describe him. Simple addition - putting down 3 teddies, adding one "now how many". So many ways games can be fun and educational! 😁 even when they haven't yet started school! Xx
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