As a mother, I understand the importance of educational and fun activities to help in the overall development of our little ones.
When our kids become 5-year-olds, they transform into individuals who understand the world a little better, have developed their reading, writing, math, and literacy skills, are more creative, and can understand their emotions.
Activities for Your 5-Year-Olds For Kids
If you are looking for various ways to keep your 5-year-old entertained and busy while learning new things and having a good time, you are at the right place! 😁
I recommend incorporating engaging and educational activities to help your kids try their hand at doing new things and learn through hands-on methods.
In this blog post, I have compiled a list of activities you can do with your 5-year-old.
“Once you learn to read, you’ll see the world in a whole new way.”
Find a comfortable place to relax in your home and read books 📖 together with your preschooler. I believe it is essential to inculcate the habit of reading in kids from a young age to help them discover new worlds.
You can choose books with colorful pictures and illustrations for your little one to get excited about reading.
Fill Coloring Sheets
I suggest you print outlines of various images for your kid to color 🖍️ with crayons or colored pencils as a calming activity.
My son has always enjoyed coloring sheets since he was a little boy and could hold a crayon in his hand.
Play with a Sensory Bin
I recommend you let your kid engage in sensory play to feel the different textures and stimulate their senses.
You can make a sensory bin 📤 at home with a tray – choose a base sensory material of choice, like rice, salt, sand, water, soap foam, shaving cream, or water beads. Add some toys and other objects for your kid to play with.
I would change the base sensory marker to create different kinds of sensory bins for my son to play with, and you can do the same.
Create Origami Shapes
My son loves doing origami, the Japanese art of paper 📄 folding, with me. I would recommend you let your kid explore paper-folding, too, and I am sure they will love it.
You can follow step-by-step tutorials and help your kid fold simple and basic origami shapes, like fish, dogs, butterflies, floating boats, and so on, to create beautiful paper shapes that your kid will have so much fun making.
Research states that folding origami shapes can help our kids develop hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills, stimulate their brains, and build their patience meter.
String Beads on a Thread
Give your kid a piece of thread 🧵 or twine and a handful of beads to do this simple activity that can help improve their concentration abilities and hand dexterity.
Instruct them to string all the beads through the thread. You can also provide different colored beads for them to sort and then put them through the given thread to form beautiful patterns.
We had too many beaded strings that my son made as he loved the activity a little too much, so I turned them into adorable bracelets for my daughter.
Fold Paper Strips
You can cut a sheet of paper 📑 into thin strips and make your kid fold the individual strips over and over again until they get to the smallest size as a way to develop their finger strength and fine motor skills.
My son benefited from this activity, and it let him stay focused.
Have a Dance Party
As my son would say – it is always a good time to dance!
You can play some lively music and have a dance 💃🏽 🕺🏾party at home with your kid for a fun time. Dancing can help kids express themselves while getting their bodies moving for some much-needed exercise.
Make Art and Craft with Handprints
You can make your kid cover their hands ✋🏼with paint and transfer their handprint impressions onto paper or canvas. They can decorate these impressions with paint, markers, and paper shapes to add details to make adorable handprint art that you can adorn the walls in your home with.
I also recommend tracing their handprints on colored paper, cutting and decorating them to use as banners and other decorations.
Try a Magic Milk Experiment
I recommend you try this simple yet cool science experiment that was a favorite with my son and will leave your kid in awe, too.
Pour a small amount of milk 🥛 into a shallow tray or bowl, just enough to cover the bottom, and add a few drops of various food colors on the surface of the milk.
Take the tip of a cotton swab or a toothpick dipped into liquid dish soap and move around the food coloring drops on the milk. The food colors will not mix with the milk unless it comes into contact with the liquid dish soap.
Your little one will have fun twirling the food coloring around the milk with the toothpick to create patterns.
Complete Word Search Puzzles
You can print templates of word search puzzles 🧩 that are made for the level of a 5-year-old and let your kid search for the list of hidden words to finish the puzzle. I sometimes give my son a time limit to make the activity more interesting, and you can try that, too.
I believe word search puzzles can help our kids learn new vocabulary and give them a sense of satisfaction after successfully completing the puzzles.
Practice the Alphabet with Sensory Trays
In my opinion, kids must be able to learn and write the letters of the alphabet 🔠 sufficiently, as it is the basic building block of the language.
You can fill a tray with a thin layer of sand, salt, or shaving cream, just enough to cover the bottom. Let your kid practice writing the letters of the alphabet using them as a working surface for a tactile and hands-on activity.
I suggest you give your kid reference cards of the letters for them to recreate on the trays.
Go on a Nature Walk
You can take your little ones on a nature 🌲 walk to get in their daily exercise and also observe nature in its full glory – the plants, flowers, and birds, listen to nature sounds, and breathe the fresh air. Being in nature helps improve our kids’ moods and soothe their minds and bodies.
My son and I look forward to our nature walks together every weekend.
Cook and Bake Together
I would say involving your kid in the kitchen 👩🏽🍳🧑🏽🍳 to occasionally watch and assist you in cooking and baking allows them to learn new things about the food they eat and how much effort goes into making it, and an opportunity for family bonding.
You can get your kid to do simple tasks – add the ingredients, mix the batters and broths, grate the cheese, knead the dough, sprinkle chocolate chips and sprinkles on desserts, and be your official taste tester, a role my son takes very seriously in the kitchen!
Count with Everyday Scenarios
I recommend you use the everyday scenarios 👀 around you to help your kid develop their counting abilities like I did with my son.
You can point to people in the park, fruits on the table, clouds in the sky, socks in the laundry basket, toys on the floor, and so on, and make your kid count with visual aids.
Skip Count with Paper Ice Cream Cutouts
I did this fun, hands-on activity where my son stacked paper ice cream scoops to learn how to skip count.
You can draw and cut an ice cream 🍦 cone from brown colored paper and ice cream scoop shapes from various colored sheets of paper. Write down the numbers on the scoops.
Specify a number and let your kid place the associated series of numbered ice cream scoops on the cone by skip-counting to form an ice cream stack. For example – for the number 2, the series would be 2,4,6,8, 12, and so on.
Play a Memory Recollection Game
Trust me when I say your kid will have so much fun playing this memory 🧠 recollection game, just like my son did.
Place various objects from around you, like buttons, toys, paper clips, books, etc., on a tray. Show them to your little one to look through and take a mental note for a few seconds. Then, take the tray away and let your kid try to recall the objects they saw on the tray just from their memory.
If you want to make the game more competitive for your kid, introduce a time limit they have to recall the objects.
I started with a few objects on the tray to get my son used to the game and then increased the number.
Make Paper Crowns
I suggest you involve your kid in making paper crowns 👑 to wear as a fun craft activity that can let them use their creativity.
You can cut rectangular strips of paper from thick sheets of paper in different colors for the base of the crown. Let your kid color and design them with crayons, stickers, beads, tissue paper, paper shapes, and so on to make adorable crowns.
My son and I made a lot of crowns for various occasions and themes.
Put Together Jigsaw Puzzles
You can spend time with your kid to complete jigsaw puzzles 🧩 together as a fun pastime and bond with them while doing the puzzles. Let your kid choose puzzles with pictures they like for them to be excited to see the whole puzzle come together.
I believe that completing puzzles can help kids learn about patterns and figure out which puzzle pieces go where.
I have fond memories of my son and me sitting at our dining table and spending time completing puzzles.
Make Homemade Slime
You can provide your kid with slime made at home to play with, and it is also a great sensory tool and aids in strengthening their finger muscles and calming their nerves.
I recommend you make the slime at home by combining water, glue, a small amount of borax, and a few drops of food coloring of your kid’s color of choice into a blob-like ball of slime. You can let your kid help out with the mixing process.
A gentle reminder – don’t forget to wear your gloves when mixing the slime!
You can follow a simple tutorial to make homemade slime with the correct measurements and procedures.
I recommend you give your kid a blank sketchbook or a few loose sheets of paper to draw ✍🏼 pictures with pencils and crayons, as they like using their creativity and imagination. You can let them draw things that they find exciting around them or provide them with prompts to serve as ideas.
I found my son loved reaching for his sketchbook to draw, and it allowed him to express his thoughts and the way he saw the world.
Narrate a Story with Prompts Jar
You can encourage your kid to narrate a story based on a prompt from their imagination to help them develop their language and vocabulary and to think of ideas on the spot.
You can write certain words or draw pictures on paper strips and fill them in a jar. Let your kid pick one strip from the prompts jar and narrate a story based on their prompt for a fun activity.
My son had a great time doing this activity, and he thought of many creative stories.
Tell Time with a Handmade Clock
You can teach your kid to tell the time, an everyday skill everyone needs to know, by guiding them to read the hands of an analog clock 🕰️ with this hands-on activity.
I recommend you make a clock at home with paper plates or a cardboard circle as a craft activity. You can let your kid paint and decorate the base of the clock as they like. Write down the clock numbers, poke a hole, and add paper hour and minute hands.
You can teach them to tell the time by moving the paper hands and use this handmade clock to introduce your kid to time-telling. After enough practice, they can read the time from an actual analog clock.
Play with Lego Building Blocks
Playing with building blocks is a favorite pastime for most kids, and my son loves spending time creating things out of Lego blocks and bricks.
You can let your kid aimlessly play around with the Lego blocks and bricks or encourage them to build homes, towers, buildings, or whole neighborhoods to foster their creativity and imagination.
Play with Playdough
Let your kid play around with playdough to create lines, shapes, and objects, and use their creativity to pinch, roll, and mold the clay. You can give them toy rolling pins, cookie cutters of various shapes, stamps, and skewers as tools for them to use to make the process more fun.
I recommend you give them tracing mats of shapes, numbers, and letters to help them learn by shaping playdough to place on the mats.
Your kid will definitely enjoy this simple sorting ✅ activity that can help them differentiate objects based on certain aspects.
You can place a few random everyday objects chosen from around your house – toys, books, paperclips, buttons, Lego blocks, etc., and make your kid sort them into categories based on their color, shape, and size.
Complete an Obstacle Course
I would say obstacle courses are so much fun to complete and are a favorite with my son.
You can create an obstacle course at home by arranging basic household items like pillows, toys, cardboard boxes, chairs, stools, and so on in different layouts for your kid to try and complete the course by going through all the obstacles in their way. Set a time limit to motivate them to get competitive.
Play Hopscotch with Bubble Wrap Squares
I recommend playing a game of hopscotch for your little one to get in their daily physical activity and also for them to have a good time.
This hopscotch game can be played even on rainy days as the number tiles are made of bubble wrap for indoors.
You can adapt the game to be played within the comforts of your home – cut bubble wrap into squares of considerable size and write down the numbers with colored markers to make the number tiles. Then, place the bubble wrap squares in the usual hopscotch layout for your kid to jump on the numbers and play the game.
I must tell you that hopscotch was one of my son’s favorite games when he was 5-years-old, and it brought me so much joy to see him jump around.
Add and Subtract with Dice
You can do this activity to make addition ➕ and subtraction ➖ easy for your child. I guarantee it is fun to do math like this to simplify the learning process and make it less overwhelming for them.
Give your kid two dice and let them roll them. You can specify whether they have to add or subtract the numbers on the face of the dice and write them down.
I made a paper dice at home to include more numbers than the regular dice for my son to calculate.
Match Numbers to Dots
After our kids have passed the stage of rote counting, they need to learn one-to-one correspondence counting to use in their everyday lives.
I recommend you write down the numbers on individual cards and draw dots ⚫️ on Post-it notes representing the numbers. You can lay the individual number cards on the table and let your kid stick the Post-it notes on the numbers to match the dots with the corresponding numbers.
My son found this method easy to learn and understand correspondence counting.
I sometimes make the dots on clothespins for my son to pin them to the matching number cards.
Go on an Outdoor Scavenger Hunt
I’m sure your kid will enjoy a scavenger hunt in the garden at home or at a nearby park to look for 🔎 nature items, as my son surely did.
I recommend you make a list of nature items for them to look for, like flowers, leaves, birds, sticks, mushrooms, ants, pine cones, butterflies, and so on, for them to tick off the list one by one.
I would say that this activity is exciting and fun for kids and encourages them to look and observe nature better.
Race with Toy Cars on a Maze Track
My son had a great time trying to race his cars through the maze.
You can draw a maze-like track with multiple pathways using chalk on your sidewalk and let your little ones drive their toy cars 🏎️ in and out of the drawn maze to keep them entertained.
You can do the same activity indoors by drawing a maze track on cardboard or thick chart paper for your kid to play on.
Stack Cups into Towers
Let your kid stack towers as high as they can go using paper or plastic cups to build a tall tower 🗼 that stands the test of time and doesn’t fall.
I suggest cutting squares of thick paper from them to place between the individual cups to distribute the weight and help them stack the cups better to make the tower.
My son learned the importance of patience and had so much fun trying to build his cup towers.
My son loved doing these activities when he was a small and curious 5-year-old boy a few years ago, and I’m sure your little one will love doing these activities, too.
I hope you enjoy reading the above list of hands-on and engaging activities that you can do with your 5-year-olds.
Please leave a comment below if you have more activities to add to the list or have any questions for me to answer – I would love to hear from you! ❤️
I’m a former teacher with a background in child development and a passion for creating engaging and educational activities for children. I strongly understand child development and know how to create activities to help children learn and grow. Spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, and volunteering in my community.