Ideas to Stimulate Kids' Imaginations

Are you concerned about the amount of time your child spends playing on the computer, or watching the TV? So are the parents of Parent Soup -- the #1 place for parents online. But there's no need to fret, because here is a list of easy-to-implement activities that stimulate kids' imaginations (without draining your pocketbook). Some of these ideas also provide the perfect opportunity for you to spend some quality time with the kids - brainstorming, pretending, and just having fun.

"For cheap entertainment and a good opportunity for imaginative play, let your preschooler 'paint' the exterior of your home or deck. Supply them with a bucket of clean water and a new paintbrush. As they 'paint' discuss different colors and the different patterns they are painting."

"Last summer my sons, ages 10 and 7, 'washed' my car, the house, the sidewalks, the porch, etc., with squirt guns. They loved squirting everything in sight. They also 'watered' my plants, the neighbors' bushes, and every tree around."

"One thing my three-and-a-half-year-old daughter loves to do with white paper is to cut it into somewhat-circular shapes and then make masks out of it. She also stamps and stickers the paper to make the masks more creative."

"Mix some tempra or finger paint in a flat pan or old pie tin then let your children press a plastic flyswatter into the paint. Then they can lightly 'swat' a piece of paper to make a waffle-like design. Change paint colors for variation. Look out, depending on how much enthusiasm your little one swats with -- this can be a messy project!"

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