All activities should be done with adult supervision.
Two of the most frequently asked questions I get is,
How do I keep my 2 year old entertained at home?
What activities can I do with my 2 year old that will last longer than 5 minutes?
I get it, 2 year olds can be tricky. Wonderful, but tricky.
They are active, they are curious, and their attention spans are very very short.
Does this sound like a 2 year old who may be living in your home?
It’s frustrating, I know, to set up an activity for your 2 year old that you see online, only for them to take one look at it and walk the other way.
I also know what it feels like to want to tackle your endless to do list and resorting once again to the TV because you.just.need.a.minute!
So, here’s an important message for you before we start, You are not alone. You are doing a great job.
Days at home with a 2 year old can be long. And that is why you need a toolbox of simple and fun activities that you can put together on a moments notice.
Before I share my favorite activities for 2 year olds, here are some important reminders about our favorite toddlers:
Their attention spans are smaller then you even think they are
It’s completely ok and normal for them to try the activity for a few minutes and then get up to do something else
- If you leave an activity out for them, a lot of times, they will come back to it
- Please supervise your child, especially if they are still putting things in their mouth. Do not do activities that aren’t taste-safe or with small parts
These 2 year old activities promote:
- fine motor development
- allow for open-ended process art
- exploration with simple sensory bins and new textures
- early literacy exposure
- opportunities to help develop language and a love of reading
- early math skills
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Brown Bear Brown Bear Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers
2 Year Old Fine Motor Activities:
- Vertical Color Sort and Stick with Colorful Stickers
2. Paint With Water
3. Paper Tray to Rip and Crumple
4. Cardboard Sticker Match
5. Paper Towel Tube Pom Pom Drop
2 Year Old Simple Process Art:
1. Paint With Ice and Washable Paint
2. Paint With Kitchen Utensils (like spatula, whisk, spoons, and forks)
3. Paint and Stamp with Paper Towel Rolls
4. Paint The Circle Art Prompt
Trace circles onto a large sheet of paper and invite your 2 year old to paint inside of the circles
Simple Sensory Bins For 2 Year Olds
1. Rainbow Rice Sensory Play
Create your rainbow rice using this recipe in this post: The Ultimate Toddler Activity Guide-March Learn and Play Activities
2. Hidden Puzzle Sensory Bin
Use any sensory bin filler you like, (we used dyed penne pasta) and hide pieces from chunky puzzles inside for your 2 year old to find and match.
3. Wash The Dishes Sensory Bin with Soapy Water
4. Two Ingredient Snow Sensory Bin
Combine 1/2 cup of white conditioner and 2 cups of baking soda to create sensory snow!
5. Farm and Pond Sensory Play
As a sensory filler I used dry split peas for the farm animal figurines to play on and blue play dough for the pond. I paired this with farm books for some bookish play!
6. Hidden Puzzle Sensory Bin
If you want more simple sensory bins to get started with, head here: Sensory Bin Fillers
Play Dough Play For 2 Year Olds
- Baby Shark Themed Play Dough Tray
2. Play Dough With Loose Parts
Please make sure your child is no longer mouthing small parts before setting this up. For set ups like this I like to include popsicle sticks and plastic straws to poke in the play dough.
4. Valentine’s Day Play Dough Tray
For our favorite play dough recipe, check out this recipe from I Heart Naptime!
To set out play dough trays like this, I love placing the play dough in the middle of this plastic appetizer tray from The Dollar Tree and then having loose parts to fit the theme in the other spots.
Color and Shape Play For 2 Year Olds
1. Connect The Dots With Kwik Stix Paint Sticks
To set this up, I taped a large sheet of brown paper, you can also use white, and made shapes like triangles, squares, and rectangles using dot stickers. I gave her Kwik Stix paint sticks to connect the dots and make the shapes.
2. Flash Card Color Sort
These Disney shape and color flash cards we found at The Dollar Tree
3. Dot Sticker Sort and Stick
Anytime you can get your 2 year old to work on a vertical surface like taping things to the wall is great practice for their fine motor muscles!
4. Counting Bear Color Sorting
5. Popsicle Stick Shape Match Puzzle
6. Brown Bear, Brown Bear Color Sort and Sensory Bin
This color sorting sensory bin activity pairs perfectly with a favorite book of ours! You can find this activity and more to go along with the story by reading this post: Brown Bear Brown Bear Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers
If you are still looking for more ways to keep your 2 year old engaged, learning, and playing at home, you may be interested in learning more about my parent membership The Purposeful Play Community.
Helpful Resources For Playing and Learning With Your 2 year old: