Looking for fun aunt ideas to do with the nieces and nephews? We’ve got you covered! What is it about being an Aunt? You’ve got a great position in the family with a niece or nephew (or more than one of each!)
You get to be THE Aunt to a tiny, precious, little, perfect human…and then you get to hand them back over to your family. You get to be the biggest cheerleader, the brightest spot of inspiration, and best hug-giver.
A baby has the whole world before him or her and you are the one who will be there to watch, play, babysit, talk, create, and love. As nieces and nephews grow, Aunts are there to watch and encourage. You can have a close relationship (Aunt-ship?)with nieces and nephews whether you live nearby or far away. An Aunt is born when a child is born, and the love that is bonded between an Aunt and a niece or nephew is unlike any other.
How to be a good aunt
Ok. So, how can you add a bit of aunt fun to a day out with the nieces or nephews. There are definitely way to be a good aunt.
The secret to aunt fun success?
When kids have special time with their aunt, they have time spent that is purely focused on the child. That special time is typically positive, though hard conversations can and should happen. The thing is that the time spent with Aunts on any given day is focused on interests of the child, conversations that matter, and a break from things like homework, chores, school, or other issues.
To be a good Aunt, there are a few ingredients:
- Involvement in meaningful activities or tasks
Each of these key features of a fun day with the aunt is a way to involve the child and spend time that matters.
There are certain understandings about being an Aunt. You can’t compete to be the best Aunt there is. You just, do what you do best.
Niece and Nephew Fun
Play, create, and explore what your connection with your niece or nephew inspires. You don’t interfere or compete with your niece/nephew’s parents to be the “fun one”. You are the Aunt. The one who is there to love and watch and play and hug no matter what the world brings for this little child.
To be a good aunt, you don’t need to spend tons of money on the best gifts. You don’t need to even do all of the creative activities listed below. All you need is to focus on what matters to your niece and nephew, and spend time that matters!
Being an Aunt and loving Aunthood is a special role like no other. Build a relationship and grow it!
fun things to do with your aunt
If you are looking for ways to play and just “be” with your niece and nephew…or nieces or nephews, you are in the right place.
We’ve got ideas for hands-on play, with creating, enjoying time together, and growing relationships with nieces and nephews.
Ideas for Aunts to do with nieces and nephews
Looking for fun ways to spend time together? Sure movies and days at the ballpark are nice, but sometimes a day at the Aunt’s house just playing together is just right. Add some of these ideas to your day:
Play with bubbles.
Make a snack.
Paint with homemade baking soda paints.
Read a book and make a book-based sensory bin.
Make cardboard tangrams from recycled cardboard.
Cook Vegetable Quesadillas.
Play board games.
Build with Legos (and learn!).
Make 3 ingredient kinetic sand.
Freeze frozen fruit kabobs.
Play and learn with a muffin tin.
Bake lemon bars in a jar.
Make a rainbow snack tray.
Get messy with fizzy sensory dough.
Make a Bee band-aide craft.
Aunts and nieces and nephews can cook together for hands-on memory making time together.
Play with soapy foam.
Craft DIY rhythm sticks.
Make torn paper art.
Plan an outer space theme with books, snacks, activities, and crafts.
String beads into jewelry
Cook wedding soup.
Make crayon play dough.
Eat ice cream and make an ice cream craft.
Make a bow flower craft.
Play with a marble run in water.
Make Honey rice crispy treats.
Make a jellyfish craft.
Paint a birdhouse.
Play tic tac toe (with dyed pasta!)
Watch Star Wars and build block light sabers.
Make a lighthouse craft.
Have a dinosaur fan? Read a dino book and play a game.
Bake Fruit Pizzas.
Race cars and experiment with air drag.
Create potato stamp art and crafts.
Paint with yarn.
Make an egg carton caterpillar craft.
Paint with pinwheels.
Play Goodnight Moon Memory.
Make messy sensory clean mud (on the stove top!).
Messy Sensory Play for nieces and nephews
Host a sleepover and make strawberry pancakes or a waffle bar breakfast.
Make a robot craft.
Craft with seedling containers.
Make a footprint tractor craft.
MAKE AN ANT (AUNT) CRAFT!
Make a butterfly craft.
Build with blocks.
Make metallic crayon play dough.
Make crayon floam dough.
Create sensory bottles.
Bake banana cheesecake bites.
Freeze grapes into caterpillars.
Create gorgeous suncatchers.
Make play dough with body wash.
Stamp thumbprints into a turtle craft.
Read I love you books.
Play in a beans and bugs sensory bin.
Play with corn and cookie cutters.
Make an olive thumbprint craft.
Pull out a cardboard box and play with pipe cleaners.
Play with magnets.
Frozen fans unite! Play with Frozen Snow sensory dough.
Make graham cracker tangrams.
Dye pumpkin seeds for play, learning, and crafts.
Craft sand art candle holders.
Make orange zest salt dough.
Make turkey pretzel rod treats.
Build a quick and easy light box.
Cook up some baked cotton balls for sensory and fine motor play.
Make a newt napkin craft.
Crafts for Aunts and Nieces and Nephews to Make Together
These niece and nephew crafts are fun ways to get creative as an Aunt.
Build a castle with homemade cardboard blocks.
Have a little builder-fan? Make this backhoe craft.
Paint sugar cookies.
Have a fan of firetrucks? Make a firetruck craft.
Go to the library and grab some books. Do book inspired activities.
Tell nursery rhymes and make an Old Woman Who Lives in a Shoe craft.
Make play dough with pop.
Play with shaving cream.
Plan an outdoor letter scavenger hunt (it’s easy, promise!)
Have a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle fan? Make this craft.
Play with rocks.
Make sensory Kool Aid Puffy Paint.
Slide down hills in cardboard cars.
Play with sticks and stones.
Build with styrofoam.
Create with sparkles and paint.
Visit a circus then make a circus craft.
Read Pete the Cat and make Four Groovy Buttons sandwiches.
Make circle art.
Thread beads on feathers.
Make dress-up rainbow beaded bracelets.
Paint snow (or ice in the summer time).
“Bake” play dough cupcakes.
Play with craft pom poms and recycled water bottles.
Explore nature in a water bin.
Create clay nature sculptures.
Play pretend Pizza Shop.
Stick magnetic letters on the garage door.
Being a perfect aunt
There is no way to be the perfect aunt. There are a thousand ways to spend time with your niece or nephew to be a great aunt. Have fun being an aunt that is a special person to those kids (of all ages!)
We hope you find a few (or a ton!) of ideas for creative play and memory building fun with our ideas. What kind of fun activities do you like to do with your nieces and nephews?
Niece and Nephew Tips
Being a good aunt to a niece and nephew involves building a strong, loving, and supportive relationship with them. Here are some ways to be a great aunt:
Spend Quality Time Together: Dedicate time to be present in their lives, whether through playdates, outings, or family gatherings. Engage in activities they enjoy, and show a genuine interest in their hobbies and passions.
Listen and Be Supportive: Be a trusted confidant and offer a listening ear. Support their goals, dreams, and challenges. Encourage open communication so they feel comfortable sharing with you.
Celebrate Milestones: Be there for birthdays, graduations, and other significant life events. Offer meaningful gifts and heartfelt congratulations to make these moments special.
Share Stories and Wisdom: Share family stories, traditions, and life lessons. Your experiences and wisdom can provide valuable guidance as they grow.
Offer Guidance: Provide guidance and advice when needed, but respect their parents’ rules and decisions. Be a role model for integrity and kindness.
Be Reliable: Keep your promises and commitments to them. Reliability builds trust and shows your dedication to their well-being.
Encourage Creativity: Foster their creativity and imagination through art, reading, and other creative activities. Share in their love of exploration and discovery.
Respect Boundaries: Respect their personal space and autonomy. Allow them to express their individuality and make choices when appropriate.
Stay Informed: Be aware of their interests and preferences as they evolve over time. This will help you connect with them on a deeper level.
Support Their Interests: Attend their sports events, school performances, and other activities they’re passionate about. Your presence will mean a lot to them.
Help in Times of Need: Offer your support during challenging times, whether it’s helping with homework, providing a shoulder to cry on, or assisting with practical matters.
Be Fun and Playful: Be a source of fun and laughter. Play games, tell jokes, and create happy memories together.
Respect Their Parents: Always respect and support their parents’ decisions and rules, even if you have differing opinions. A united family front is essential for their well-being.
Send Surprises: Surprise them with occasional thoughtful gifts or letters to let them know you’re thinking of them.
Show Unconditional Love: Let them know you love and care for them unconditionally. Your love and acceptance are powerful sources of security and self-esteem.
Use these tips to support your niece and nephew as they grow and develop!
Colleen Beck, OTR/L has been an occupational therapist since 2000, working in school-based, hand therapy, outpatient peds, EI, and SNF. Colleen created The OT Toolbox to inspire therapists, teachers, and parents with easy and fun tools to help children thrive. Read her story about going from an OT making $3/hour (after paying for kids’ childcare) to a full-time OT resource creator for millions of readers. Want to collaborate? Send an email to email@example.com.