Summer Fun for Preschoolers: The Big List of Activities to Keep Toddlers Active and Engaged When Days are Hot

With the days getting longer and the sun getting hotter, chances are you have a bunch of kids at home wanting to ‘do something’ and not knowing what. Yes, the summer season can be a long one if you don’t have a lineup of activities to keep the little ones engaged and occupied so that you can get a meal made or a load of laundry done.
Here is a list of summer fun activities to keep preschoolers happy when days are hot:
1. Reading picture books.
2. Coloring books and printouts.
3. Sticker fun. Great way to make greeting cards for the whole family.
4. Craft activities. Need inspiration? Here’s a list of 30 craft sites filled with ideas!
5. Floating paper boats in the bathroom or kitchen sink.
6. Swimming sessions in an indoor pool.
7. Splash fest in the bath tub. Messy but lots of fun.
8. Make ice cream or ice lollies.
9. Make summer-themed sandwiches.
10. Baking cookies or cupcakes.
11. Decorating cookies or cupcakes.
12. Playing in the freshly washed and dried laundry and helping you sort after that.
13. Build pillow forts and castles.
14. Spray cleaning their toys with a spray bottle filled with clean, drinking water. Yes, my daughter loves this.
15. Pretend play.
16. Popcorn and movie afternoon.
17. Stargazing and moon watching.
18. Visit a friend or relative.
19. Write a letter to Grandma and Grandpa or a favorite aunt or uncle.
20. Visit the post office to send the letter and see how a post office works.
21. Have a picnic in your front lawn or backyard or the family room!
22. Stage a play. Tape it and then watch it together for some snuggle time and lots of giggles.
23. Visit the library.
24. Play board games, like Tumbling Monkeys or Hungry Hippos.
25. Sleep in late.

What are your plans for summer? Do you have some fun activities lined up for the little ones?
Share with us in the comments below or head over to the Potty Tots Facebook page and join in the discussion there.

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots fan.

Photo Credits:

Photo1 : madgerly

Photo 2: Eva Blue

Posted in Kids' Activities and Ideas | Leave a comment

Fun Chores for Preschoolers: How to Encourage Your Toddler to Help Around the House

We’ve been talking a lot about getting your little ones ready for preschool and making their first day at preschool tons of fun. So, naturally, now that they’re ready for more independence and responsibility, let’s see what chores can they help out with:

1. Toy Clean Up

One of the easiest and yet, most important ‘toddler’ chore that a preschooler can start helping out with is cleaning up after play time. Yes, deal with toy clutter by enlisting your toddler’s help. You can of course, help out but do more directing than actually helping. Tell your little one where to put the books, trucks and dolls. Make clean up time easy and fun by singing a fun song and by using picture or letter labels to indicate what goes where.

2. Laundry Sorting

Another fun chore is sorting the laundry. You’ll get some help and your preschooler will get number or color practice. You can give him the responsibility of sorting the different colored socks together or counting the number of tees while putting them aside.

In fact, if you line dry your laundry, you can ask your little helper to help you put the clothes out on the line or drying rack as well.

3. Laying the Table

Now, you don’t have to hand over your fine china or glassware to those chubby, little hands but you can certainly enlist their help in laying the spoons and cutlery out or unbreakable glasses on the table. Not only will your kids learn an important skill, they’ll also enjoy playing a part in the family meal.

Things to keep in mind when giving chores to toddlers:

  • Praise efforts and reward them occasionally. Rewarding every chore sets the wrong expectations.
  • You could, however, use a chore and reward chart where at the end of the week, you tally up the stars or stickers and let your toddler choose a reward.
  • Be patient. Your preschooler may struggle with sorting socks or may place the spoons and glasses the wrong way. That’s fine. It’s all part of the learning process. Correct but don’t criticize.
  •  Make it fun and not forced. The toddler years are years of learning, exploration and new found determination. Forcing a toddler to help you is not going to make either one of you happy. So, make chores fun and something that a preschooler will want to do, willingly.

What chores does your preschooler help you out with? How do you make it fun and interesting?

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots Fan.

Photo Credit: Abigail Batchelder

Posted in Parenting Your Toddler | Tagged | 1 Comment

How to Make the 1st Day of Preschool Fun for Your Toddler

So, the big day is here. Your li’l one is ready for preschool. And YOU want to make sure that the first day is just perfect.

Here are some tips to help you make the first day of preschool fun for everyone:

1. Pack a Special Lunch

The night before, involve your child in making and packing lunch. Talk about how he’ll have it along with all his new friends. Pack a special treat along with the healthier options and let him know that its for his first day. Here are some really great 1st day of preschool lunch ideas.

2. Put a Love Note in the Backpack or Lunchbox

Write a special note for the li’l guy or girl and slip it into the backpack. Make it visual since that will be easy to understand. A simple drawing of a heart with his photo on the card will tell him that you love him. Print out some of these lovely lunch box love notes from Picklebums and add your own photos and images for your preschooler.

3. Drop Your Child to School

Yes, even if you’ve opted for the school bus, make sure you drop him to the class on the first day. Introduce him to his teacher, help him identify kids he may know from the neighborhood or help him find his locker or table, and basically, ease him into the class environment.

4. Talk Up Being at Preschool

On the drive to the preschool, talk it up. Don’t make it a fancy, magical place. But talk about how much fun she’ll have, the new friends she’ll meet and the activities that they’ll do. If she’d accompanied you to the preschool earlier and is familiar with it, help her recall the playground, the toys in the class or the books that she’d enjoyed looking at.

5. Make Saying Goodbye Easy

Finally, make saying goodbye easy on your little one. Don’t start crying yourself, else you can be sure of a meltdown. Instead, give him a hug and kiss, let him know that you’ll be there to pick him up and take the teacher’s cue to leave. Whatever you do, don’t slip out of the class without saying bye and don’t bring him out of the classroom to calm him down. Both these situations are bound to upset your child more than ever and make leaving very difficult for both of you. So, make saying goodbye easy by being loving yet firm.

The first day of preschool is an important milestone in a child’s life. Helping a child to get used to the idea of being away from mom, dad and the familiar environment of the home and instead, be surrounded by new faces needs patience, compassion and lots of love. Here are some more ideas on making the first day of preschool super-fun.

Meanwhile, do share what tips do YOU have for easing a child into preschool life?

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots Fan.

Photo Credit: Elizabeth/Table4Five

Posted in Parenting Your Toddler, Preschool Tips and Tools | 1 Comment

{Contest} What’s Your Favorite Potty Tot Moment?

Here at the Potty Tots blog, we’re all about making potty training easy, empowering and stress-free for everyone. We’re also about having a lot of FUN.

That is why every month, we will have a cool giveaway to help make your potty training journey easier and better.

Kicking off the monthly giveaways, we’re thrilled to giveaway ONE lucky reader a complete Potty Tots potty training kit (choice of boy/girl)!

Have you met the Potty Tots yet? Check ‘em out and you’ll know why they’re such a HIT with parents and kids, alike.

To enter:

Simply tell us your favorite potty training moment. It could be an incident, a tip, a photo even. If you haven’t started potty training, don’t worry. Just share what you’re looking forward to the most.

You can comment here or on our Facebook page.

For additional entries:

Follow @pottytots on Twitter

Join the Potty Tots on Facebook

Sign up for our newsletter

Giveaway is US/Canada only and is open till 03/31.

So, go ahead, enter and make potty training a lot of fun!

Don’t forget to Vote for the Potty Tots to Get on the Shelf at Walmart! There’s less than 2 weeks to go now. You can vote everyday!

Posted in Giveaways and Contests | 5 Comments

5 Goals for Preschool Readiness: How to Know Your Toddler is Ready to be a Preschooler

The moment is bittersweet. It arrives all of a sudden. You’re not sure if you can deal with it. Yes, the time when your toddler gets ready for preschool is a major milestone for most parents.

How do you know that its time? How can you assess whether your little one is ready to be a part of a bigger world?

Here are 5 goals that can help you assess preschool readiness. Help your toddler shoot for these and you’ll know it is time to go looking for preschools:

1. Independence

Is your baby independent enough? Can she feed herself easily? Can he wash his hands on his own? Fostering independence in toddlers has many advantages and when you see that your baby is able to do quite a bit on his own, you can be fairly confident that he is ready for preschool.

2. Communication

Communication skills play an important role in assessing preschool readiness. A child who cannot communicate needs and wants clearly would find preschool life more difficult and challenging than one who can. So, if you feel that your li’l guy needs some more time to express his needs, hold off on the preschool application and instead, encourage him to talk and converse more with all of you at home.

3. Routines

Going to preschool means following a routine. Is your child capable of doing that? Do you have regular naptimes, bed and bath times or is everything unstructured and free-flowing? If preschool is on your agenda this year, then now is the time to start using a flexible yet structured routine for your toddler.

4. Social Skills

While preschools, themselves, are a great way to encourage socialization of toddlers, before you enroll your child, you need to assess whether he’s comfortable around strangers. Has he never spent time away from you? Or will the separation anxiety stress out both of you completely? If yes, you may want to start gently by leaving him in the care of a trusted friend or family member for short durations, before just leaving him at preschool.

Does he like working on projects on his own and can concentrate or focus on individual tasks? If so, he would be comfortable with preschool activities and would not find them difficult or challenging.

5. Potty-Training

Finally, most preschools require that children be potty-trained before they’re admitted. Not only is it easier for the school authorities, but it is much better for your child to be comfortable with using the potty on his own. It increases the sense of independence that young children value so much. So, make sure you’ve introduced the potty chair to your toddler before you fill out that preschool application.

Does your child go to preschool? How did you decide he was ready to be a preschooler?

The Potty Tots are participating in the Walmart Get on the Shelf Contest. They’d LOVE to reach more parents and kids all over the globe and could really use your help! VOTING is March 7th- April 3rd. Please vote using FaceBook or text 5145 to 383838 EVERY DAY! The Tots will love you for it!

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots Fan.

Posted in Parenting Your Toddler | Tagged | 2 Comments

How to Put the Potty Before the Toddler: Introducing Preschoolers to Toilet Training

Gearing up to say goodbye to diapers? Worried that your toddler wouldn’t take to the potty? Fear not! Help’s at hand and by the time you finish reading this post, you’ll have everything you need to introduce your tot to the toilet without any fuss or muss.

1. Make the Potty Chair a Friend and not a Foe

First, introduce your child to the potty chair in a friendly fashion. Don’t make it into a bugbear and something that he or she ‘has’ to use. Toddlers and preschoolers are in the process of discovering their own independence and so forcing them to do something may backfire badly. Instead, take them potty chair shopping. Let them sit on a few models and choose the one that they like the most.

Make a big deal out of it and tell them that the potty chair is theirs and only they can use it. Make them feel special and chances are they’ll never want to wear diapers again. Also, while you are out shopping with them, use the opportunity to pick out big boy or big girl underwear and again, offer them choices. Let them make guided decisions and you’ll have an excited toddler ready to try on the new underwear and the potty chair as well.

2. Practice Potty Training Dry Runs

Once home, practice potty training basics without pressurizing (pressuring)them to ‘do the deed’. Let them just practice sitting on the chair, wear the underwear, wash their hands and get comfortable with the whole process.

3. Be Ready Yourself

Before plunging into potty training, make sure you’re ready as well as your toddler. Do you have a lot of things going on at home? Are you stressed about work? Then, maybe it would be a wise decision to wait a little. Toilet training requires patience and persistence and if you don’t have the time and energy for these, it would be better to hold back a while.

4. Make it Interactive and Interesting

Use fun books and DVDs to encourage toddlers to get used to the potty. Reading about toilet training or watching an animated movie with songs and music is bound to interest a preschooler and make him more willing to try out toilet training. Here’s a big list of potty training books and other resources to help you get started.

5. Motivate, Praise and Encourage

Finally, when introducing the potty chair to your feisty little toddler, make sure that you reward them for their efforts and motivate them with plenty of praise. Trust me, this is one area where overdoing the ‘proud mommy’ bit will actually help!

Have you started potty training your toddler? Do you have tips to share or questions to ask? Go ahead!

The Potty Tots are participating in the Walmart Get on the Shelf Contest.  They’d LOVE to reach more parents and kids all over the globe and could really use your help! VOTING is March 7th- April 3rd. Please vote using FaceBook or text 5145 to 383838 everyday! The Tots will love you for it!

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots Fan.

Photo Credit:Abigail Batchelder

Posted in Potty Training Tips and Tricks | Tagged | 1 Comment

Please VOTE for Potty Tots in the Walmart Get on the Shelf competition!

Vote in Get On The Shelf

Hey all you Potty Tots fans!

We would LOVE it if you could vote Daily for the Potty Tots Potty Training Program  starting 3/7 thru 4/3 and share the link through FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Blogs, email…even shout it from the rooftops…Vote for Potty Tots!  We would love to get our products on the shelves of Walmart all across the globe and help parents and toddlers with this first little task in taking care of themselves.  I’d like to teach the world to sing our theme song…”I Can Do it all by myself”!

Thank you so much! 🙂


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Fun Ways to Foster Independence in Your Toddler

independent toddler“I can do it myself, Mama”, those are words that fill my heart with motherly pride and also, make me a little sad that my baby girl isn’t a baby anymore.

Discovering independence is a natural part of growing up and as a parent, it is our job to ensure that our kids grow up to be self-reliant, independent adults.

Here are some fun ways to encourage independence in young children:

1. Free Play Time Makes an Independent Toddler

Being allowed to play freely and without much instruction or direction is a great way to let a child explore options, exercise choice and act on his own. Free play means letting a child deal with the blocks or the paint book on his own.

If you’ve been deeply involved in your child’s play activities, this means stepping back a little and seeing what he’d do when left on his own. Sure, he may make a mess of the paints or topple over a tower just as soon as he constructs it, but let him see that.

Instruct if you have to but don’t direct.

2. Fun Decisions to Build Independence

Headed to the mall for some ice-cream? Ask your toddler which one he’d like instead of automatically picking out a favorite. Give her choices when dressing up for school. Offer options during reading or craft hour. Learning to make simple decisions is a big thing for a preschooler. So, make sure you use opportunities to let them make a few decisions every day.

3. The Helpin’ Out Game to Boost Confidence

Toddlers love to help. Mine is a constant companion when I’m hanging out the laundry to dry or in the kitchen baking. Helping an adult makes toddlers feel all grown-up. It may take a bit longer to finish a task but it gives a child the sense of confidence that he needs to try bigger and more complicated activities independently.

4. Play the Patience and Praise Card

It can be frustrating for a parent to watch a toddler struggle laboriously over his shoes or the buttons on his shirt. You may be tempted to jump in and do it yourself or worse, yell “Hurry up!”

Don’t. Instead, play the patience card and if possible, factor in extra time when getting ready for school. Offer to help if you can see your li’l one getting frustrated but don’t just do it yourself.

Praise is another fun way of encouraging kids to be independent. My daughter, after watching the Potty Tots DVD, exclaims, “I did it!”, each time she goes to the bathroom independently. We high-five and I can actually see her glow with pride. Use fun ways to praise your child for small but significant acts of independence.

 5. Books and Toys to Increase Independent Behavior

Finally, books, toys and DVDs are a great way to encourage independence.  I Can Do it Myself by Diane Adams and I Can Do It!: A First Look at Not Giving Up by Pat Thomas are two great books to read with your preschooler and encourage them to try anything new or seemingly difficult.

 How do YOU foster independence in your toddler?

The Potty Tots are participating in the Walmart Get on the Shelf Contest. They’d LOVE to reach more parents and kids all over the globe and could really use your help! Just like American Idol, You can vote for them as many times as you want everyday!VOTING is March 7th- April 3rd.

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots Fan. 

Photo Credit: Abigail Batchelder

Posted in Parenting Your Toddler | Tagged | 2 Comments

It’s snowing in San Diego!

To all our Potty Tot Friends in the local San Diego area,

If you are looking for great child care during the holidays there is a great event being held Thursday December 8th to introduce KinderCare’s Winter Camp. Check out all they have to offer.  There will even be snow! See details below!

It’s snowing in San Diego!

Join KinderCare for a morning sneak preview of Winter Camp!  You and your child(ren) will have a great opportunity to spend the morning engaging in a few of the winter science activities KinderCare will offer during its  annual camp.

It gets even better!  Play in the KinderCare snow scene – made with real snow!  We’re making it extra special for the kids and creating a snow-filled playground where they enjoy a really fun morning just for them!

KinderCare’s Winter Camp is specifically designed to offer a balance of fun with learning during school winter break. While introducing kids to activities they love, seasonal camps are a great solution for  parents, who may need to work or catch up on holiday shopping and errands, with a great way for  their child to have fun and learn.

KinderCare Winter Camp is offered for both preschool and school-age children during the last two weeks in December.  From the magic of flight to the science of chemical reactions, children can learn through educational and hands-on themed activities, including “Bubble Trouble,” “Volcano Blast,” “Helicopter Propellers,” and “Balloon Rockets.”  KinderCare’s Winter Camp reinforces key subjects such as language arts; math and science; and creative expression.  This season Camp runs December 19 – December 23.

Date:               Thursday, December 8, 2011

Time:               9:30 am – 11:30 am

Location:         KinderCare

2354 Fenton Street

Chula Vista, CA 91914

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

We Just Can’t Hold it Anymore! The Potty Tots Are Coming!

At Potty Tots we are so excited to be a part of the Blogsphere!  Potty Tots are helping children around the world with potty training and now we have another place on the world wide web to share potty training tips as well as advice on all things toddler!

Stay tuned for potty training advice from Miss Maggie, videos, special guest bloggers, promotions and giveaways!


Parents you can find all kinds of information about signs of readiness , potty training tips, FAQs and answers on our website.  We even have a page “Just for Tots” where  your little one  can meet the Potty Tots and play games with them!  We invite you to visit us on the web at

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment