The never ending quest to distract your toddler when they start to get whiny sometimes leads to the strangest activities. Now, there's nothing new about a toddler's love of using a hammer, but when what starts out as a fun hammering activity turns to poking dress shirt collar plastic tabs into styrofoam, that's when you realize you'll do anything to keep your toddler entertained.
Giving your toddler something to pound is a sure fire hit (pun!). After 2 years of parenting, you already know you don't need a fancy pounding or hammering play set to entice your 2 year old to start hitting objects. So you'll easily be able to put together a hammering activity that will channel their energy in the right direction.
This hammering activity is not just a humble boredom buster, however! It also requires toddlers to work on their fine and gross motor skills, as well as works hand-eye coordination and strength.
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Toy hammer or pounding tool. You might have a toy hammer in your toy box, but if not, look for a large wooden spoon or even a tin can that they can wield as a pounding tool.
Something to pound. I suggest golf tees.
A base to pound into. We used a piece of styrofoam from a package, but if you don't have that, you can use a piece of corrugated cardboard, a foam block, or a cardboard box.
Hammering Activity Instructions
1. Before your toddler begins hammering away, poke the golf tees into the base. You'll want to make sure they stand up straight, but don't push them in so far they can't be hammered down further.
2. Next, give your toddler the hammer. In the unlikely event you need to show them how to bang the top of the golf tee, demonstrate the action. The more likely scenario is that they will grab the hammer away from you before you can say, "Have at it."
Now, you're probably wondering where the plastic tabs for dress shirt collars come into all this. For some reason we had a bunch of them in the same container as the golf tees. Our 2 year old decided it would be fun to poke them into the styrofoam and pound them. too.
Whatever keeps them busy!