Fun things to do with a 4-year-old over Skype
August 21, 2013 6:24 AM   Subscribe

My daughter's on the other side of the ocean for a little while, but we keep up with daily video chats. We talk, goof around, make faces, play with puppets, but I sometimes wish I had more ideas to keep her entertained. Can you think of any other fun things we could do?

We call it "skyping" but we're actually using Google Hangouts. Also, there are ipads at both ends so if there's some fun networked game/drawing tool/etc we could be doing on the ipads while we chat, we'd totally try that. I've read books to her but it's hard to show the pictures through a laptop webcam.

Thanks much!
posted by muckster to Media & Arts (9 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Maybe some kind of flashcards? Letters, colors or shapes might be fun to do.
posted by dawkins_7 at 6:28 AM on August 21, 2013

Best answer: Previously
posted by backwards guitar at 6:30 AM on August 21, 2013

Best answer: Read to her for sure! Depending on her age (just turned 4? close to 5?) and developmental stage, she might be ready to start listening to more involved chapter books. Special time reading a book with a parent (and the suspense of waiting to find out what happens next!) is amazing.

When I was around that age, my dad started reading aloud Charles Lindbergh's account of his groundbreaking solo transatlantic flight. Weird choice, but my sister and I ate it up, and more than 20 years later I still remember a lot of it. Next up was Moby Dick, which took forever and a lot of explanation, but it sunk in. Try it, she'll love it!
posted by charmcityblues at 7:00 AM on August 21, 2013

Response by poster: Thanks. She just turned 4.
posted by muckster at 7:21 AM on August 21, 2013

Best answer: My 4.5 year old daughter skypes with her grandparents quite a bit, and has been doing so for several years now. I like to call at mealtimes, most often breakfast, because the skyping helps keep my daughter firmly planted in one spot at the table while she eats. From there grandma asks her lots of questions or shows her stuff. Some things grandma does are show my daughter greeting cards (the musical ones, or ones with movement, go over well), jump little chips around in a tambourine, and play with little beenie baby stuffed animals in front of the camera (they essentially look like puppets). My daughter does stuff on her own end too -- she takes a food "order" from my mom, then goes off to her kitchen to "cook" it and then "serves" it to grandma by putting it in front of the computer, where grandma pretends to eat it. My daughter also puts a blanket over the keyboard when she wants my mom to pretend to sleep, etc.

I hope you have fun with this! Good luck!
posted by onlyconnect at 8:17 AM on August 21, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: My father does Hebrew school via iPad with my girls (5 & 8): they both have copies of the same workbook. Reading poems has also been a hit.
posted by leahwrenn at 9:04 AM on August 21, 2013

Best answer: Hangman - easy words that she might know, cat, hat, mat, bat etc..
posted by lasamana at 10:37 AM on August 21, 2013

Best answer: My kids love jokes and riddles. Every time we skype with grandparents we spend a ton of time telling them. The 5 year old understands them, and the 2 year old just likes listening to the joke cadence and the laughter.

(Yesterday's winner? "knock knock" - "who's there" - "ahtch" - "ahtch who?" - "god bless you!")
posted by rouftop at 2:03 PM on August 21, 2013

Best answer: This is not a big thing, and you're probably doing it already -- but oh my god my kids love those little add-ons to your picture in google hangouts. You know, where you put like a pirate hat on your face? Every time their dad's out of town we spend half the time putting hats and beards and halos on and off.
posted by gerstle at 3:37 PM on August 21, 2013

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