25 Little Ways To have Fun Before Turning 10 (with some help from an adult!)
When my children were growing up I found it really difficult to know what they were capable of by what age.
Every now and then I found a valuable list of skills per age. But I never found a list of ideas to have fun before turning 10. With no mother to guide me, all I had to go on were:
- What I could remember of my own childhood. I remember being completely mortified when we went on a surprise ferry trip for my 10th birthday and the entire crew and passengers sang me “Happy Birthday”! Some kids would relish that, but I didn’t. You have to know your own child.
- The achievements of my friends’ children. In conversations with friends I found out lots of good info, like how old their children were when they started making their own school lunches. (And yes, it can be fun!)
- Learning from other unknown people. This was my own investigative research, reading articles, listening to radio interviews. And I found out that kids don’t develop enough sideways vision to cross a road safely until they are at least nine years old. (So thank goodness my eyes had developed enough at the age of six, to pull my five-year-old sister out of the path of an oncoming car.)
- I also learnt about age appropriateness by trial and error. It was a new idea to get my four-year old to earn points by having fun doing household chores to gain a longed-for item.
In the end, I discovered children are actually quite capable of doing many things much earlier than we generally think. That is, as long as they have appropriate coaching, training and supervision along the way. Except from personal experience, I have to say that physical development, such as eyesight, can be a limiting factor!
It’s Easy to Work it out. Right?
While you might think it’s easy enough to work out what kids can and can’t do, when it comes to crunch-time it’s much harder than it appears. You can feel as though I you are slightly in the dark with working these things out.
OK, well, maybe a lot in the dark?
These are some of the questions I struggled with, and maybe you do too:
- Q: When are children old enough to make a meal on their own?
- A: Generally by the time they are nine they can manage a simple meal.
- Q: How old do kids need to be before they can do their own washing?
- A: I got mine going on this when they hit Year Nine, or around 14 years of age.
- Q: When is it appropriate to go on a sleepover?
- A: That depends. In this day and age there are no hard and fast rules. Be aware. Go with your gut. Check it out very carefully. Brief your child well, and give him or her a way out, such as a codeword to mention on the phone, if they are ever uncomfortable. Perhaps, “I have a stomach ache.”
- Q: How do you make sure kids have fun, and that it’s not just some lame activity?
- A: A lot has to do with your attitude. Choose to be adventurous. Get into it with gusto. Read the list of 25 ideas below!
- Q: What’s the best way to encourage independence and creativity?
- A: Teach your kids early by showing, then assisting, then supervising, and then giving independence. This may take anything from days to years, depending on the activity. Don’t forget boredom is the pathway to amazing creativity.
- Q: How much do you help them get something done, and how much do you leave them to make their own mistakes?
- A: As much as you can bear!
The List Below Requires a Little Help from an Adult for Some Activities
“25 Little Ways to have fun before turning 10” can give you a new outlook on what is OK, and what might not be. This list also helps you engage intentionally with a child so they develop a skill or ability with your coaching – which is all very important as you take them on their journey to adulthood.
A list like this also helps you mix things up, and be a bit more creative on-the-go.
So, here it is:
25 Little Ways to have Fun before Turning 10
(With a little help from an adult)
2. Swim in a Dam or the Ocean
3. Go for an Overnight Hike
4. Look at the Moon, Planets and Stars through a Telescope
5. Sleepover at a Friend’s House
6. Make a Meal by Yourself
7. Give Someone Something that Costs You
8. Read a Chapter Book your Mum or Dad Read when they were a Kid
9. Catch a Fish
10. Talk to Someone about God
12. Learn How to Play a Musical Instrument
13. Take some Photos and Get them Developed
14. Visit an Island
15. Find a Place to See the View from very High
16. Sleep in a Tent or under the Stars
17. Eat Food from another Country
18. Learn how to Fix Something
19. Write a Letter to Someone and Mail it
20. Plant some Seeds and Watch them Grow
21. Make a Baby Laugh
22. Learn how to Play a Sport
23. Make a Gift for Someone you Love
24. Go to a Play or Concert with a Friend
25. Plan Something Very Kind for Another Person when they aren’t Expecting it
Do you have any other fun ideas for up-to-10-year-olds?