There you are, in the room with two very enthusiastic children who long to do lots of fun things with you. But what are you going to do? No worries! We have listed four games for you so that you can make your day a great success!
Game 1: ‘The great race with the egg’
Young old, big or small, this game is a party for every child. As an au pair, all you have to do is arrange a spoon and a boiled (!) egg, prepare paper and markers for the assignments and finally help set up the race.
Let the children prepare as much as possible, because children often know very well what they can do for themselves, so that the preparation by the children themselves ensures that the race is arranged to their own level.
The game goes like this
To start, the children will set up a race. This can be done throughout the room, bedroom, kitchen, and even the garden. The race consists of various obstacles and assignments.
Examples of obstacles are cushions (they may not touch the floor), a table (under or over it, estimate as a nanny what is safest and best for the children), the sofa (a roll over the sofa is of course not allowed on the race are missing) and the seats (for slaloming, for example).
Let the children come up with their own race layout! You’ll be amazed at how resourceful and imaginative kids can pick up on this.
But a race is not a race without assignments. So make sure that an assignment is ready (written on an A4 paper) at different places of the race. There are several ways to approach creating the commands:
- You write the assignments with a marker on the middle of an A4 paper and the children then receive the papers to decorate them frequently with drawings and colors. The advantage of this way is that the race (including drawing, preparing, racing and cleaning up) can quickly become an afternoon-filling program.
- The children may come up with their own assignments and the devised assignments are noted on a4 paper (by the children themselves or by you). If necessary, this is again richly provided with drawings and cheerful colors.
When both the obstacles and the assignments are ready and ready, it is time to start. The children take turns finishing the race. It is your job as a nanny to encourage the children and, if the children like it, keep track of (and possibly record) the time of the race.
And that egg is still in the game? When the children have completed the course and have practiced the assignments, you can go a step further. This means a new challenge and therefore new enthusiasm among the children! During the course, the challenge is now not only to successfully complete all obstacles and assignments, but also to get the (boiled!!) egg, which is on the spoon, safely to the end of the race.
An example of a race in the game
We already have an example ready. All you have to do is set up the obstacles with the children, write down the assignments (and decorate them), collect the things, and put the assignments in the right place.
- Obstacle – The start is in the hallway near the stairs. As soon as the starting gun has sounded, the child runs up and down the stairs once.
- Assignment – Turn 10 circles around the shoe.
- Obstacle – Carefully walk over the cushions. Be careful, the floor is made of water!
- Obstacle – Crawl under the table.
- Objective – Jump 15 times as high as you can.
- Obstacle – Slalom around the seats without hitting the seats.
- Assignment – Arrange the shoes in order from smallest to largest.
- Obstacle – Make a (head) roll over the bank.
- Assignment – Hop back to the start.
Game 2: ‘Collect game!’
This activity is fun for children of all ages, but it is important to give the children an assignment that is appropriate for their age. We divide the collection assignments for you from easy to difficult, so that you as an au pair can estimate at what level you can start with the children.
The game goes like this
The aim of this game is to be busy with the things in the house in a completely different way. Toys are used to play with, you can eat with spoons, a pan belongs in the kitchen and the doormat is at the entrance, but with this game all this is forgotten for a while! You are going to let the children get started with these things in a completely different way.
And now really clear
To be a bit more concrete, we have prepared several assignments below. These assignments are named by you as the au pair and it is the task of the children to carry them out. They can do this both in teams and against each other. Between the various assignments, the items are put back where they came from, so that they can be found again in the next assignments.
- Collect as many red items as possible (for example: soap, towel, duplicate).
- Collect as many purple items as possible (for example: notebook, book, cup).
- Collect as many round items as possible (for example: ball, clock, DVD).
- Collect as many things as possible with flowers on them (for example: notebook, photo book, pencil case).
- Collect as many items as possible that start with the letter p (for example: pencil, trash can, umbrella).
- Collect as many items as possible that start with the letter n (for example: stapler, needle, nuts).
- Collect as many items with 4 letters as possible (for example: book, pear, lamp).
- Collect as many items as possible in triplicate (3 books, 3 toothbrushes, 3 plates).
Did you start with the children with assignment 5, but this turns out to be a bit difficult. Then just take a step back to an assignment before!
Game 3: ‘In Search of the Treasure’
How nice is it to move back to the time of pirates, boats, and treasure maps? Dig in the sand, collect gold coins and look around with binoculars. Unfortunately, those days are long gone for us. But do not be sad! You can step into the time machine together with the children to go treasure hunting again. All you need are pens, markers, pencils, paper and of course a treasure.
The game goes like this
This game can be divided into three parts: becoming real pirates, making treasure maps, and searching for treasures.
Part 1: Collect together with the children everything related to the theme of ‘looking for treasure’. This can be an old hat from the parents, a black piece of cloth that can serve as an eye patch, a parrot cuddly toy, old clothes, and a purse in which the treasures can be stored.
Part 2: It’s time to make the treasure maps. This means that the treasures (a candy, a drawing, an old coin, etc.) are hidden. Then everyone makes a treasure map, with the location of the treasure marked with a large red cross. It is also important that the location can be found, so that the cupboard, bed, sofa or plant next to the cupboard is also neatly drawn next to the red cross on the. To make it even easier, the treasure map may contain small clues such as ‘walk 10 steps and then go left’. Then draw 10 footsteps for this clue. Furthermore, the map is provided with beautiful colors, drawings of the things you have to walk past and a mysterious title. Part 3:
And then it’s time for the treasure hunt. One card is searched at a time. The steps on the map are followed, the clues are viewed and the treasure is sought. Has the treasure been found? Keep it in the treasure bag and move on to the next treasure map!
To top it all off: Toilet roll game
Do you have creative children who enjoy crafting and drawing? Then collect two empty toilet rolls, rope and craft/drawing materials per child. The two toilet rolls are put together and with rope and craft / drawing materials the rolls are transformed into real binoculars!
Game 4: ‘What do you see in my story?’
Rolling, clambering, and jumping around the room is wonderful and entertaining during the day, but in the evening it is really time for a somewhat quieter activity. Make sure that this activity is done while sitting, possibly after dinner.
The game goes like this
The children choose a book together. The best is a verse book with short stories, but a picture book is also possible! It is up to you to provide the children with paper and coloring utensils. Then it is time to read the book quietly. The children can draw a picture about the story while reading the story. This means that they are drawing while reading.
Try taking a break from reading and asking the children about their drawings. Have them share what they made, why they made it, and what they would call their drawing.
How do you think it will go on?
A small change to the plan: Have the children complete the drawing and then place a new blank piece of paper on top of the drawing.
The question you ask here is: ‘What do you think will happen next, how will the story continue after this?’ This question can be asked at the end of a verse/book, but also somewhere in the middle.
Instruct the children not to tell their answer, but to draw it. When the drawings are finished, let them tell you the sequel, based on the drawing that you have made.
Also, check out our post on sidewalk chalk, too! This can be a fun way to do this game in nice weather.
Now you have lots of fun games to choose from when playing with kids!