Five-year-olds are brimming with budding skills, energy and an endless curiosity. Many venues in many communities can help foster physical or mental growth while entertaining the child at the same time. Spend some time at fun places together and then consider enrolling your child in special activities and lessons to help her continue to grow and develop.
Whether it is summer or winter, a park provides a 5-year-old with ample room to run around and expend extra energy. During the summertime, children can play on the park equipment, bring along a soccer ball or a game of one-on-one, and bring along a picnic basket full of little sandwiches and healthful snacks to make a simple trip to the park an all-day affair. As autumn arrives, the season provides the additional opportunity to collect falling leaves for painting activities at home. In winter, some parks end up with a nature-made skating rink to enjoy. Other winter activities include a snowshoeing trek, a first try at cross-country skiing and making snow angels on the ground. As spring blooms, pick a bouquet of dandelions or pretty weeds to display at home.
Spend an activity-filled day at the beach with your 5-year-old for lasting memories and fun in the sun. She can swim in the ocean or lake, build sandcastles in the surf and play beach volleyball. As cooler weather approaches, the beach still provides children with opportunities to draw pictures in the sand and collect seashells for some craft projects at home later.
3. Indoor Play Centers
During rain or bitter cold weather, an indoor play center offers 5-year-olds an opportunity to play like they would at an outdoor park. Many are equipped with giant play structures to climb and slide down, while others also offer chests full of dress up clothing, bounce houses, trampolines and art activities. Some play centers or recreation centers offer classes throughout the year or have concentrated summer camps to stave off boredom.
4. Children's Museums
Combine childhood fun with endless opportunities for learning at a children's museum. These child-oriented venues are equipped many hands-on, interactive exhibits that teach children about human anatomy, science, astronomy, community and daily living, nutrition and nature. Kids can climb a tree house, dig for imitation dinosaur bones, or play on a giant rope structure. Children’s museums often offer educational programs for schools as well as families, as well as art programs and story times.
5. Animal Entertainment
Many 5-year-olds are fascinated with animals. You can encourage her enthrallment with an occasional visit to a local farm, petting zoo, animal preserve or zoo. Many of these offer interactive experiences with animals, such as petting and feeding opportunities, and some have learning programs to help satisfy your child’s curiosity.
- PBS Parents: Child Development Tracker - Your Five Year Old
- Chicago Children's Museum: Experience the Museum
- Playborhood: Turn Your Neighborhood Into a Place for Play; Mike Lanza
- A Child's Seasonal Treasury; Betty M. Jones
- Ryan McVay/Lifesize/Getty Images