How to make Saturdays special for preschoolers

How to make Saturdays special for preschoolers
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For moms of small kids, Saturdays can become just another day in the never ending lineup of days. My Monday to Friday is sprinkled with little variation. We, like many families with small children, live a wash-rinse-repeat lifestyle. It’s not bad but it is predictable, monotonous, and…a little boring. 

My oldest will often ask, “What are we going to do today?” or “Where are we going?” These are questions I’d love to have answers for besides “nothing” and “nowhere.” That gets a little lame for everyone.

So when Saturday rolls around, it’s time to get creative and make the day special! Special doesn’t have to mean expensive or complicated; in fact, it’s probably going to mean more to your kids if it’s not!

Here are a few ideas to help the mom-in-a-rut make Saturday a truly different kind of day.

How to make Saturdays special for preschoolers


  1. Make pancakes

This one’s a classic. What says Saturday morning like a stack of pancakes? And who wouldn’t mind a break from weekday oatmeal and cereal?

At our house, dad is the chef and pancake perfectionist, and we all love a good plate of round, golden fluffiness!

2. Watch something non educational

Cartoons, ladies. Break out the pure entertainment, completely free of letter recognition and counting practice. We’re talking nothing of value sneaked into the animation.

I’m a big fan of educational TV; some days just call for a little televised babysitting. I’m thankful for options that work in learning with the fun.

But Saturdays should be fun! It’s the time to introduce your kids to Tom and Jerry, Tweety Bird, Phineas and Ferb, old Batman characters, the gang from Looney Tunes, and other old school favorites!

3. Deviate, deviate deviate

One of the easiest ways to set Saturday apart from the rest of your structured week is to deviate from your normal routine. If your family is like ours, we usually start the day immediately without much lounging around first (unless I’m pregnant. Then we lounge like champions.)

If that’s you, make it a point to lounge a little on Saturdays. Let the kids pile in your bed with you and read a story (perfect mom)…or wrestle (boy mom). Linger a while longer in your pajamas. Drink your coffee on the back porch. Just slow down.

4. Get out!

Before Saturday arrives, do a little research and find out if your area has anything special to do exclusively on weekends. In our city, there are a number of Saturday-only markets that pop up: farmer’s markets, craft markets, food stalls, a little something for everyone.

Markets only have to be as expensive as you make them (plus parking), and half the fun of going is just being there. And bonus, farmer’s markets open early! If you’ve got toddlers who wake at dawn, load ‘em up and hit the market for the best pick of produce.

As an aside, this is also a great way to show your kids an alternative to grocery stores and how to support local businesses. Depending on the age of your kids, you can make a sneaky little field trip out it!

5. Go off the grid

I won’t preach at you, but if you live by the phone or iPad throughout the week for work or other reasons, consider backing off on Saturdays. Do what it takes to make it inconvenient for you to check social media sites, email or texts, even if just for a few hours. Make Saturday mornings different by deciding to be all there with your family.

6. Do NOT clean!

Don’t make Saturdays a drag for your kids. Some Saturday chores might be unavoidable, but most probably aren’t. Consider tackling chores little by little throughout the week rather than doing a chunk of work on Saturday.

If it’s really not practical to reassign Saturday chores to weekdays, try to not make every Saturday a work day. And for the ones that do have a heavy work load, plan something special as a reward afterwards!

7. Set aside Saturday toys and games

For the really young kid who might not pick up on subtle differences between weekdays and weekends, set aside a few special things that only make an appearance on Saturday. These might be games that the whole family plays, or toys that you don’t want to lose their “magic.”

When I was a kid, our thing was a little piano keyboard that lived in my parents’ room…somewhere. We didn’t always have access to it, so when we did it was extra fun!

Some other ideas for special Saturday toys or games are:

Colorful dominoes just for lining up in different patterns and watching what happens when one falls!

Marble tracks to build on the floor, or magnetic pieces for the fridge.

Art supplies that make you shudder…stuff like paint or glitter.

Giant water guns .

8. Have a Pinterest day

You know all those boards with fabulous ideas and recipes you’re curating? Challenge yourself to actually DO one of them with or for your kids every Saturday! Decide during the week which project you’re going to tackle and round up the supplies you need.

Here are a few pins on my boards that I’d love to try some Saturday:

Build a backyard tricycle car wash 

Make floam and get squishing

Turn trash into treasure

Make a crash pad with your kids

Try some fun trampoline activities

Saturdays should be extra fun days for your kids, no matter what age! What do you do with your kids to make Saturdays special?

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