Things to do with Young Children in Fairfield

Let’s define young children as children between the ages of two and the time they start kindergarten, which is when they start riding the bus to school on their own. Young children are between wanting to hang on to you to go anywhere and just about do anything. This is not long after they stop hanging on to mommy for dear life, the time they start running ahead of her and frighten her half to death because the thought crosses her mind that they might fall or suddenly take that step off the curb to put it down on pavement because their internal engine tells them they can.

That’s when the risk factor comes into play. That’s when young children look at a situation and quickly assess the risks before they decide to push the paddle bike down the inclined driveway in front of the house. There’s enough in these scenarios to give a parent chills who really doesn’t have a clew. But children really don’t know consequences yet, although you do in terms of possibilities, but they won’t know until something tells them that not all ideas are good ones-well, that may be true for all of us.

There isn’t all that much that you can do with young children in Fairfield that won’t cost you some money, but here’s a list to consider or to pick “things to do” from that are fun and absolutely free.

There are playgrounds all around town even if one doesn’t count those at elementary schools. Some call the park at Jenning’s beach best. But there’s a small amusement park for kids at the little park at the marina and an area for a picnic lunch. The beaches have swings but these might need closer supervision.

There is no shortage of things to do at any one of the three libraries in town. There are more things to do that are free than anyone might ever imagine doing in a lifetime. Libraries offer all kinds of A to Z programs involving readings, authors, activities for rainy days, theatre for children, hands on activities. In addition they will send you emails of what they offer for children. As all parents know, libraries are not only about books. They have music, art, and videos to please anybody some time. Plug the library into your week with the children, and a lot of great time is chewed up with high interest level stuff for all.

The Audubon society in town and the center out on Burr Road complement those things that children are currently learning. Frequently, there are opportunities to ask the experts at those sites. Bird spotting and identification in the backyard is another activity worth remembering as a scheduled or even unscheduled activity. There’s the dog pound to visit, too. Animals seem like fun or are fun if there are some that are part of the family.

Fairfield has several beaches and a small lake where children can safely play under parental supervision if lifeguards are not on duty. For one thing, you ought to teach them to skip rocks. Proper selection is important for the number of skips. The shore along Jennings Beach is a fun place to collect a variety of shells that parents can help identify with a handy Connecticut guide to shore birds and shellfish. Most children that age are happy to start a collection of whatever they find. They think that most things they pick are one-of-a-kind, exotic collectibles. Things to put in a sand bucket to take home, wash and put on the dresser.

Fairfield has many small parks to explore. Children enjoy a trek in the woods, especially if they start learning to identify things they see that are particularly remarkable to them. There are many parcels of open land with trails through them in Fairfield where you can explore. Children can start a leaf book to identify trees. Parents can help them put a label on what they are. It doesn’t take long to get started on a classification system.

When it rains or snows, opportunities for fun are boundless. They are just starting to enjoy books on their own. Some like imaginative reading while others read along with a parent. Keep reams of Xerox paper on hand. Don’t mind the scribbling and drawing, the use of crayon or watercolor. Always feed them how-to books that teach basic skills for cartooning or sketching. It may be messy and will appear a waste of resources, but let them go at it. Wonderful things result if it makes them happy, you should be happy, too. Let them play with an inexpensive Sound Board.

Use every moment around the house as a teaching moment after which the children will declare that they want to be the one to do the kind of job you were doing together. Cooking together, they will want to become chefs or cooks. That will last a few years. Repairing a door? Let them use simple tools by teaching them how to use them. While you’re at it, teach them the mechanics of how the thing that they see you do and the tool you use work. As long as they follow you around, take the time to explain to them everything you do. They will recall later more than you believe they can. In the process you will teach them things some adults don’t even know about cooking and home repairs.

On the one hand, there are many things to do that are fun, involve learning something new and free with the help of a guardian or parent.

On the other hand, there are a lot of things to do that are not all that much fun but they involve learning or seeing something new and exciting when they are discovered. Well, all that fun and excitement might be more the kinds of things that you appreciate or wish you had been taught. This is my second time around with children. My wife and I raided our four, and now we are raising triplets and their older sister.

And, don’t forget that everything you ask children to do around the yard or house or invite them to do with you may not always entail fun for them as it does from your perspective, but many times they will think, at least until they figure it out, that what you are asking them to do is called, work, it’s really fun to do and often, they will want to do more. Well, until such time, they will find all kinds of work more fun than you ever imagined it to be when you were a child.

If you don’t like my list, don’t be too quick to discount me yet for being too old to have some insight into what young children like to do given a chance. With my wife, I’ve raised four who are in now between the ages of 40 and 55 and I’m currently helping raise four more, my grandchildren who are now 11, triplets and a 14 year old. So I have some knowledge, although not perfect knowledge.