I think I can safely say that there is no child on this Earth that is naturally patient. (Actually, a lot of us adults aren’t patient either! Lol!)
Children tend to have very short attention spans, so learning to show patience is a difficult skill for them to attain. Since they get bored easily, asking them to wait “a few minutes” can feel like waiting for hours from their viewpoint.
Despite the challenges, it’s worth it to help them learn to wait patiently. And there are plenty of fun activities teaching children patience that help them work on learning to wait while still having a good time!
Try some of these games and activities with your kids to help build their waiting skills! For more ideas for little ones, try this list of indoor activities for toddlers!
Activities Teaching Children Patience:
1. Have a Spoon and Egg Race. Remember the classic race where you try to carry an egg on a spoon and see who gets to the finish line first without breaking the egg? That’s actually a great way to teach children patience. If you don’t take your time to focus and walk carefully, you won’t win the race!
2. Play the Waiting Game. Get a basic kitchen timer and challenge the kids to see who can wait quietly for three minutes. Hand out a simple treat to the winner. If they all wait quietly for three minutes, increase the time to five minutes.
3. Play a game of Simon Says. Simon Says is another classic childhood game that helps kids learn to be patient. Kids who hurry up and try to guess the next set of instructions won’t catch it when you don’t say “Simon Says”!
4. Learn to play chess. Chess is an excellent game for children who need help learning patience. The more deliberate and well-thought-out your moves, the more likely you are to win!
5. Have regular read-aloud time. Try to have a regular read-aloud session with the kids. Have everyone sit on the floor in a semi-circle and read an illustrated storybook to them all. Sitting and listening to stories regularly can help them increase their ability to sit still and pay attention.
6. Play a game of Concentration. Get out a set of playing cards and lay them all out on the floor face down. Have the kids take turns trying to find a matching set. Concentration is good for learning patience, because it forces kids to take their time and memorize the cards they see so that they can match them up later.
7. Schedule some handwriting practice. Good penmanship comes with lots of practice and plenty of patience. Kids who practice handwriting will learn how to take their time, do careful work, and work at improving their writing.
8. Try some math drills. Memorizing addition facts, multiplication tables, and other basic math facts takes time, but doing so can help kids learn to patiently recite math problems until they learn them.
9. Complete a jigsaw puzzle. Puzzles are excellent tools for improving children’s patience. After all, it takes time to find the pieces, discover where they fit, and complete each picture! Start with small puzzles, then as children learn to master them, gradually move on to more complex puzzles.
10. Build a model. There are models that kids can build of cars, airplanes, buildings, people, and more. Working on these complex models helps kids learn to stick with a project until it’s complete. It also teaches them to read the instructions carefully and follow them as written. All of these are helpful for learning to be patient.
Resources for Activities Teaching Children Patience:
Pick up these Amazon affiliate storybooks that are awesome for helping kids learn the value of patience!