Anyone who has looked after a large group of toddlers can attest that you would need to be ready with activities to get them busy. Toddlers have an incredible amount of energy that a caretaker must redirect or else the caretaker will be quickly overwhelmed. Fortunately, there are tons of large group activities for toddlers you can prepare. These activities will surely keep toddlers busy with a grand time.
There are tons of entertaining activities for large groups of toddlers. You can have them enjoy coloring, singing, and dancing. You can also get them to play games such as Hide and Seek, Duck Duck Goose, Simon Says, Treasure Hunt, and Egg and Spoon. These are some of the many activities that toddlers will surely enjoy.
This article will enumerate plenty of large group activities for toddlers to keep them occupied for quite some time.
Large Group Activities for Toddlers
Materials Needed: paper and crayons.
One of the easiest activities you can leave to a large group of toddlers is coloring. The bare essentials you’d need are paper and crayons. If you have the resources, you can even prepare blank drawings in advance for them to color. Coloring is an excellent large group activity for toddlers as it achieves multiple things at once.
For one, coloring is considered to be a great way for children to develop several skills. Handling crayons and using them to create works of art develop their motor skills. It also allows young children to improve their grip with regard to writing implements.
Coloring also allows children to express their personality and creativity, thereby promoting holistic brain development. If you’ve seen children color and draw, you can also attest that the task allows children to improve their focus.
While coloring can be done individually, it can also be a great social activity for a large group. Since coloring can be a way to express their thoughts into art, coloring as a social activity provides children with insight as to how other people around them conduct themselves. They might even learn a thing or two from one another.
Although this activity might not be enough to fill the entire afternoon, it is an activity that can be easily done with little preparation.
Materials Needed: speakers.
Toddlers are a playful bunch and they come with a lot of energy. When looking after them, it is common to get them performing physical activities. Not only do physical activities help them develop their motor skills, but physical activities also help tire them out – thereby getting them ready for naptime.
One of the classic activities you can do for a large group of toddlers is to have a dance party. All you’d need is a set of speakers that can amplify music for them to dance to. If your phone is loud enough, it should also suffice.
Dancing is a superb physical activity as it allows toddlers to engage their bodies. It develops a child’s kinesthetic senses, giving them more control over their limbs and motor functions. Letting them dance might even bring out talent and passion they did not know about.
While it would be convenient to just sit and watch the toddlers as they dance the time away, you will have to engage them as well. Engaging the children can take different forms. For example, you could join them dance to the music. This activity also helps develop their social interactions.
Materials Needed: speakers.
Dancing on its own can be a great activity already. However, some toddlers require more engagement than simply letting them dance on their own. Sometimes, you need to make the activity into a game to get them going. One of the easiest ways to make dancing into a game is to play Freeze Dance.
Freeze Dance is a simple game toddlers love to play. The objective is to simply dance along to the music. However, everyone must pose still once the music stops. Just like dancing, all you’d need is a source of music. Speakers would be great to have for this activity. However, this game can be played even with you singing.
Freeze Dance is an awesome large group activity for toddlers as the game offers the same benefits as dancing. Additionally, making it into a game makes the activity more exciting. Lastly, the game requires the toddlers to pay attention. When looking after a group of toddlers, having their attention is an important job to keep them from getting too distracted.
Materials Needed: balloons.
It is true that toddlers can get excited at almost everything. However, toddlers and other young children can get crazy about balloons. If you have a large group of toddlers that need to be entertained, a pack of balloons should be more than enough to give them an unforgettable day.
There are a number of ways you can get toddlers entertained with balloons. The easiest way would be to simply let them play with the balloons. Toddlers simply adore throwing balloons up in the air and hitting them as they slowly fall back to the ground. This becomes a beautiful sight if you provide balloons of different colors.
Toddlers can also play games with balloons. For example, a simple game would be to keep the balloon from touching the ground. This game simply entails each toddler having one balloon that they have to maintain in the air. They cannot catch and hold the balloon, instead, they have to hit the balloon back up. It is recommended to proceed with caution as the toddlers might get into accidents as they focus on the balloons up in the air.
Another simple game that can be played with balloons is to play passing the balloon. This can be done by arranging the toddlers in a circle. A balloon can then be passed around the circle with the goal of not dropping the balloon to the floor. If you think this is too easy, you can keep adding the number of balloons that the circle has to pass around.
Materials Needed: a musical instrument.
If you have a large group of toddlers, a great way to entertain them is to sing. Traditionally, nursery rhymes are preferred. However, you can choose to sing whatever you want. It should be noted that easier songs are recommended so that the toddlers can sing along.
Nursery rhymes are excellent choices as they are easy to learn. Not only does singing nursery rhymes provide entertainment to the children, but singing nursery rhymes can also help teach toddlers new words and concepts. Singing becomes a medium for storytelling that toddlers can appreciate and understand.
One of the best things about singing with toddlers is that you do not need anything to do it. You can simply sing songs together acapella. However, a musical instrument will make it easier for the toddlers to sing along. If a musical instrument cannot be provided, then you can also get music online that the toddlers can sing along to.
Materials Needed: speakers and chairs.
If you are already having a dance party with a large group of toddlers, another way to elevate the activity is to get them to play Musical Chair. Musical Chair is a traditional game that most people learn early in their lives.
With chairs arranged in a circle, the players are tasked to walk or dance around the ring of chairs as the music plays. However, each player must secure a seat and sit down the moment the music stops. It is important to remember to have one less chair to the number of players. This way, the player unable to secure a seat is eliminated from the game. The game continues until a single player remains.
Musical Chair is a whimsical game that will surely get the toddlers enjoying their afternoon. Just like how Freeze Dance allows toddlers to improve their focus, so does Musical Chair. The toddlers will have to focus on the music to excel at the game.
Hide and Seek
Materials Needed: none.
One of the first games that any child would ever learn is Hide and Seek. Transcending time and culture, almost everyone has experience playing hide and seek – or at least a variation of it.
The game is simple: one player is tasked to be the seeker while everyone hides. The seeker covers their eyes and counts to ten. In those ten seconds, everyone else has to go off and find a good hiding spot. Once the seeker has finished counting to ten out loud, they can then open their eyes and begin looking for everyone else.
Hide and Seek is such a fun game for toddlers. It can also be extremely amusing for you as well, watching toddlers think that they are hiding so well.
It should be noted that it will be your responsibility to make sure that the hiding toddlers do not get themselves somewhere dangerous. For a large group of toddlers, it might be better to play the game indoors where you can always keep track of them. It can be dangerous to let a large group of toddlers loose to hide outdoors.
Duck Duck Goose
Materials Needed: none.
Aside from Hide and Seek, Duck Duck Goose is another classic game for children to play. Compared to Hide and Seek, Duck Duck Goose is an easier game to manage since the space required can be more limited.
Duck Duck Goose is played with the toddlers sitting in a circle facing inward. One toddler must be assigned the Goose. The Goose walks around the circle of players, tapping their heads while saying “duck” for each head. Eventually, the Goose will tap someone’s head and say “goose” instead of “duck.” The child that was tapped to be the goose has to get up and chase the Goose. The Goose wins by being able to outrun the other toddler and sit in their space in the circle.
If the Goose was caught by the toddler, the Goose remains the Goose and the round is repeated. Otherwise, the game continues to the next round with a new Goose.
Even with such a simple mechanic, Duck Duck Goose is a great large group activity for toddlers as the game is good fun for everyone.
Materials Needed: bubbles.
One of the easiest ways to get a large group of toddlers amazed and occupied is to have them play with bubbles. Toddlers cannot get enough of watching the shiny iridescent bubbles float in the air. They will be running around trying to catch as many bubbles as they can.
This activity is especially magical when it is their first time seeing bubbles. You can make bubbles by getting a traditional bubble product, the kind that comes with a bottle of solution and a wand to blow through. You can also make bubble solution on your own. This can be done by mixing water and dish soap.
It would be even easier for you to make bubbles if you have a device for making bubbles. However, any method should be fine.
Materials Needed: an assortment of toys.
Activities that give toddlers a specific goal are always great for large groups. Activities like these get their gears going as they work toward that goal in mind. If you have a large group of toddlers you want to entertain, an easy way to do so is by having a treasure hunt.
If these kids have already experienced searching for Easter eggs, they will love going on a treasure hunt. All you would need to do is hide an assortment of toys around the area and let the toddlers loose. It is important to let them know what it is they are looking for. You should also let them know how many there are to find so that they would know if they have found everything you’ve hidden.
You can even flavor the treasure hunt as a single scavenger hunt. Instead of them looking for various items hidden away, they could work together to find a single hidden item. Though it will require prior preparation, this type of treasure hunt will lead the toddlers from one clue to another until they finally reach their treasure.
A treasure hunt where all the toddlers should work together toward the treasure is much more recommended than the alternative because this way, the toddlers are all together. It becomes easier to watch over them and make sure they are safe, instead of having them all wander around on their own looking for treasures of their own.
Materials Needed: none.
Another classic game for a large group of toddlers would be Simon Says. Simon Says is an easy game for toddlers to play and it is surely one that they will enjoy.
Simon Says entails having someone play the role of Simon. This role would probably have to be you or some other adult. First, start by teaching the toddlers how the game is played. All the toddlers have to do would be to follow the Simon’s instructions as long as they precede the instruction with the words “Simon says.”
Give the toddlers some exercise rounds with easy examples such as “Simon says touch your head” or “Simon says jump three times.” Also, try some rounds where you do not say “Simon says” so that they understand that they should only follow the instructions if the words “Simon says” were said.
Simon Says is a great large group activity for toddlers as it gets them to pay attention and stay as a group. Needless to say, this game is also pretty easy to play since it can be played without any necessary requirements.
Materials Needed: none.
While games are good for toddlers to have fun, activities that can help them develop certain skills will be more productive for the time. A fun activity for toddlers that can help them develop skills would be to play Balancing Act.
Balancing Act is a simple game: all you would need is to have the toddlers balance along a straight line. A plank of wood on the ground would be good for them to walk on. However, any straight line along the ground should work just as well.
The toddlers can take turns walking along the straight line maintaining their balance. You could make it a game by having them go one after another per round. Everyone who cannot maintain balance is eliminated and those who remain go again for another round. The game continues until a single player remains and wins the game.
Egg and Spoon
Materials Needed: boiled eggs and spoons.
Another fun activity you can have toddlers play that would help develop their balance is Egg and Spoon. The premise of the game is to simply balance an egg on a spoon. Though it may sound simple, it can be very challenging, especially when the toddlers are running or being competitive.
For this activity, you would need eggs and spoons. The eggs must be boiled so that they don’t break and make a mess in case they fall to the ground. While the act of balancing eggs on spoons can seem simple enough, you can turn this into a game that the toddlers will enjoy.
For example, you can have them in two teams and make it a relay. This way, you would only need two eggs and two spoons. One person from each team will be balancing the egg on the spoon and must walk around a checkpoint. After returning to the team, the egg and spoon are then passed on to the next member of the team. The first team to have all members have a go without dropping the egg wins.
Visit the Zoo
Materials Needed: none.
Being cramped in the same place can be tiring for a large group of toddlers – even for you. It’s nice to have a change of scenery every now and then. One of the best places to bring a large group of toddlers is to the zoo. Not only will they enjoy watching the various animals in the zoo, but the visit can also be very educational as they learn about the animals there.
Understandably, not all places will have a zoo nearby. Thus, you should highly consider visiting the zoo if one happens to be available nearby.
A visit to the zoo is a great idea because it can take a lot of time. It can even be the activity for the entire day or at least half of a day.
Materials Needed: various obstacles.
If you have sufficient space, toddlers will greatly enjoy an obstacle course. An obstacle course is simply a series of physical challenges that the toddlers will have to encounter and overcome. Although setting up an obstacle course can be laborious and time-consuming, the activity itself is worth the fun and skill development for the kids.
You might think that an obstacle course would need complicated equipment: that is incorrect. The most important asset needed for setting up an obstacle course is imagination. As long as you have chairs, tables, and other household items, you will be able to set up an obstacle course.