Thursday, May 23, 2019

Fidgeting in Kids: The Best & Most Inexpensive Ways for Kids to Keep Their Hands Busy

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Cheap and free alternatives to fidgeting toys. These DIY fidget suggestions use everyday materials and objects that you likely already have on hand.

There's really no reason to spend money on fancy fidgeting toys for kids.

Unless you really want to, of course.

After all, you can make your own fidgets for a fraction of the cost.

Or you can simply use things you already have on hand to fidget with.

Below I'll show you 40+ inexpensive fidget ideas for kids (they also make great stim toys for autistic kids) that use everyday objects.

Best alternatives to fidgeting toys

40+ Ways for Kids to Fidget for Free (or as Close to Free as Possible!)

Fidget toys are a great way to keep kids' hands busy, but they can add up in cost. And I'm SO cheap frugal. So, if you are frugal like me, I encourage you to simply try one of these low-cost or free alternatives instead.

Like I've already mentioned, these fidgeting toy alternatives are simple ideas that use materials or objects that you likely already have on hand.

Plus, they just happen to encourage the development of fine motor skills and incorporate a variety of sensory ideas.

Alternatives to Fidgeting Toys

1. Pop bubble wrap

2. Wear hair ties or rubber bands around the wrist and pull or pluck them

3. Twist pipe cleaners

4. Play hand games for kids

5. Loop a rubber band around a finger and thumb and flick/strum it

6. Twist and bend straws

7. Fill a zipper seal bag with hair gel (tape it closed) to squish, poke, or "draw" on with fingers

8. Make a sensory bin to run hands through

9. Thread beads on to a pipe cleaner

10. Play with curly bow ribbons (the ones used to decorate gifts)

11. Bounce a ball or pass a ball back and forth between hands

12. Make DIY fidget toys to play with

13. Use twist ties and wrap them around a finger, twist them, or bend them

14. Fold paper (e.g., origami, paper fortune tellers, paper airplanes, folded paper fan)

15. Roll dice

16. Unzip and zip zippers

17. Crumble paper or tin foil and unwrap

18. Run fingers over a piece of velcro or stick and unstick velcro pieces

19. Peel stickers (reusable sticks or gel window clings work great too!)

20. Rip tissue paper

21. Play with strings, yarn, or ribbons: twist, tie, play Cat's Cradle, braid multiple pieces

22. Play with PopSockets style phone holders

23. Open and close containers (wipe container lids are especially fun for fidgeting)

24. Cut paper or yarn with scissors

25. Squeeze sponges, small stuffed animals, or squishy toys

26. Play with nuts and bolts

27. Twist or braid hair

28. Spin a top

29. Do and undo snap buttons

30. Button and unbutton a shirt

31. Flip a coin

31. Play with play dough by rolling it, squeezing it, or cutting it with a knife

32. Play with binder clips or chip clips by opening and closing them

33. Crinkle and crumple a wrapper from a granola bar or similar snack

34. Twirl or tap a pencil

35. Click and unclick a pen

And these ideas are great to keep kids' mouths (instead of hands) busy:

36. Blow bubbles

37. Chew on a straw

38. Chew bubble gum and blow bubbles

39. Whistle or hum

40. Blow dandelions

41. Suck on an ice cube

Other DIY Fidgeting Toys You'll Love

20+ DIY Fidgeting Toys

DIY Chewable Zipper Pull

DIY Chewable Jewelry Fidgets

Best alternatives to fidgeting toys