100 Ways to Keep Little Kids Happy

Games to Play with a Ball

41. Knock it across the room with a kitchen utensil. Grab a spoon or a strainer with a handle.
42. Roll with it. Facing your child with legs spread apart, roll a ball to each other, alternating between using your left hand and right hand.
43. Bounce it into a hula hoop. Hold the hoop and have her try to toss the ball so it lands in the center. Move back to make the game more challenging.
44. Design spin art. Dip a small ball, such as a golf ball, into nontoxic washable paint, then put it in a salad spinner (or a plastic container) along with a few coffee filters. Put the cover on and spin! (You can use your salad spinner again after you put it in the dishwasher.)
45. Go bowling. Knock over some empty water bottles or soda cans.
46. Size them up. Give your child an assortment of balls -- tennis, golf, Ping-Pong -- and an empty muffin tin. She'll have fun putting a ball in each compartment, dumping them out, and starting all over again.
47. Play air ball. Take turns hitting a beach ball up toward the ceiling, trying not to let it hit the ground.
48. Sing a silly ball song. Have him run around the room holding a ball, while belting out "The Ball on the Bus Goes Round and Round."
49. Toss it up a slide. She'll love watching it roll down.
50. Pass it through a "human" tunnel. Both parents and the child stand in a row, one behind the other, with legs spread wide. The first person bends over and tries to get the ball through the three sets of legs.

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