Thanksgiving is a time for appreciation, and for many of us, the following day is a consumer adventure—in shops, if we have the day off, or online. We're offering a few alternative ideas, ranked in no particular order:
If you live in Denver like we do, visit the Discovery Zone at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. Aimed at kids from three to five, the Discovery Zone focuses on science process skills. Tots can dig for fossils, experiment with building, create art projects, and play with water in action.
2. Birds, Birds, Birds!
Make learning fun with a DIY bird feeder. Take a family adventure walk in search of the perfect pine cone. Then bring it home and slather on peanut butter and bird seed. Hang it close to a window and watch the birds appear. Older toddlers, 5-7, can pair the experience with Priscilla Belz Jenkins's wonderful picture book about a bird's life from egg to adulthood: A Nest Full of Eggs.
3. Build Your Own World
Build a fort out of adult-sized tables, chairs, blankets, and large-sized boxes. Then play games, make believe, and dream! Pretend camping, anyone? Some of our customers have created pint-sized homes out of our Waldorf Play Stands and Arches for the same purpose.
4. Recycle, Reuse, Renew (with a shout out to Parents.com for the idea)
Find broken crayons, remove any remaining paper, put them in an oiled muffin tin, and then place the mixed crayons in a warm oven to melt. After they cool off, pop them out of the tin. These new "rainbox color wheel" crayons are perfect for making holiday gifts of art for family members.
5. Snow Art
Snow on Thanksgiving? Celebrate by making outdoor art with your toddler. Stamp down a patch of snow with your feet to make a smooth space, then use a stick (or little hands) to make designs and drawings. Next, saunter out on a family nature walk in the neighborhood to collect pine cones, remnant leaves, and other treasures to decorate your art. Be sure to bundle up!