12 best materials to keep your kid entertained during long waits – including affordable options!

Nobody likes waiting because it can be such a drag at times. Luckily for us adults, we can use our phones in the meantime to keep ourselves entertained, be it by surfing the net, browsing social media, or catching up on our Korean dramas.

But what about kids? Sure, you can hand them your phone or your tablet as well so that they can watch their favourite cartoon shows or play educational games. But what if you’re looking for ways to keep them entertained without any screen time?

Well, you’ve come to the right place. We did the research for you and here are 12 materials that you can consider to help keep your little ones entertained just like the good ol’ days when phones didn’t exist!

1. LCD Writing Tablet

It’s no surprise that kids love to doodle during their free time, as such, many parents have tried bringing out stacks of papers and coloured pencils with them so that their kids can draw during long waits. However, the problem comes when their kids finish using all the papers before the wait is over and start becoming bored from no longer being able to draw.

Well, with this LCD Writing Tablet, you won’t have to experience such a problem again because they will never run out of space to draw on. Plus, you won’t have to always bring out a stack of papers with you wherever you go. We all know it can be really heavy at times, and not to mention a slight waste!

Credit: Shopee

This slim LCD Writing Tablet comes in four different sizes – 4.4-inch, 8.5-inch, 10-inch, and 12-inch – and it can be reused thousands of times. Finished drawing? Simply press the ‘Clear’ button and your kid can start over again. This device will also come in handy when they grow older and start going to school because they can use this for their rough workings in place of paper, making this a win-win!

The LCD Writing Tablet is priced from S$6.19 and can be purchased on Shopee.

2. Drawing Board

If you’re a sentimental parent, it’s possible that you would want to keep all of your child’s drawings so that you can look back on them in the future. Of course, this wouldn’t be possible with a writing tablet that clears the drawings away after the screen is filled. The solution to this is to purchase a Drawing Board!

Credit: Shopee

This features 14 pads that kids can freely draw on, along with 12 complimentary colour pens for your kids to use. The set even comes with a build-in pocket to hold the colour pens, so you won’t have to purchase an additional pouch to store them. You can choose to wipe the drawings off after they’ve finished, or choose to purchase another set so that you can keep this existing one like an album.

The Drawing Board comes in 41 different designs and it is available for S$6.97 on Shopee.

3. JOLLYBABY Busy Board

As its name suggests, the JOLLYBABY Busy Board is meant to keep your kids busy with its interactive resources. The board is made with soft felt, and your little one will be kept occupied for quite a period of time when you hand them this.

Credit: Shopee

The board has buttons, shoelaces, zippers, velcro, and more to help stimulate your kids’ minds and help them learn how to use these everyday items.

For example, the buttons will teach your kids how to dress themselves, and the shoelaces would be a good way for your kids to learn how to tie shoelaces for their sneakers in the future. The resources are also brightly coloured, so this will definitely be something of interest to kids.

The JOLLYBABY Busy Board is priced from S$2.99 and you can purchase it on Shopee

4. ALILO Talking Pen

Reading a storybook is certainly a good way to keep one entertained, but what about kids who can’t read yet? Of course, you can read the books to them, but we know you’re may be trying to talk to servers or get logistics sorted out during long waits and not be able to do the reading.

Fret not, because you can use the ALILO Talking Pen!

Credit: Shopee

The ALILO Talking Pen is a smart pen that reads books and explains words to children. Purchasing the pen will entitle you to three English Mother Goose Interactive Story Books, 100 English Learning Cards, Alphabet and Piano Posters, as well as 540 recording stickers. Pointing the pen to any of the pictures and letters will result in the pen talking and educating your child! You can even record your own voice and link it to any of the 540 stickers so that your child can listen to your voice whenever they point the pen at it.

The ALILO Talking Pen set is available in both English and Chinese, making this a great investment especially if you’re looking to help your kid learn Chinese as well!

You can purchase the ALILO Talking Pen set from S$79.88 on Shopee.

5. Water Handheld Game

Challenge your kids to the classic Water Handheld Game where they would have to try and get rings into a holder. Having played this as a kid, we all know how difficult it can get, and trust us when we say that your kids will be kept preoccupied for a long time.

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Unlike the ones sold back in those days, this Water Handheld Game comes in various cute designs that will attract your little one’s attention. Designs include Trucks, Paw Patrol, Angry Bird, Dinosaurs, and Unicorns.

Purchase the Water Handheld Game from just S$4.50 on Shopee.

6. Balance Ball Game

Credit: Shopee

Another game you can consider is the Balance Ball Game. Kids will have to put their balancing skills to the test as they attempt to keep the balls away from the holes scattered around. Playing this often will help in training your kids’ concentration and balancing skills!

This device comes in four beautiful pastel colours – green, yellow, pink, and blue. Get this today and say goodbye to your kids being bored during long waits!

The Balance Ball Game is available for S$1.45 on Shopee, but a minimum purchase quantity of four is required. 

7. National Geographic Kids Book Set

If your kid is curious about learning new things including about nature and the world, they will definitely enjoy looking through National Geographic’s series of educational books for children.

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There are a total of four series that are meant to cater to different reading levels. For pre-readers, the set comes with 30 books, while the level one set comes with 39 books. For level two, there are 37 books, and for level three, there are 31 books.

Bring one book with you every time you head out and your little one will be entertained by the interesting facts within the books. This is entertaining yet educational at the same time, so score!

The National Geographic Kids Book Set is priced from S$22.80 and can be purchased on Shopee.

8. HDY Mini Children Digital Camera

See the world through your little ones’ eyes when you get them the HDY Mini Children Digital Camera. As kids are usually very curious and interested in the things around them, this Mini Children Digital Camera will let them capture certain things so that they can ask you about them later.

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This serves as a great toy and since it comes with an SD card, you can even save the photos and develop them into an album to look back on in the future.

The HDY Mini Children Digital Camera is available in three colours from S$14.90 each. Buy it on Shopee now!

9. Interactive Fairytale Storybooks

Not every child likes to read because they may find the books too boring or because they find that there are too many words, so in order to entice them, you can purchase these interactive fairytale storybooks!

Credit: Shopee

The characters are drawn in a cute manner, and the books are filled with colourful interactive tabs that breathe life into the stories once they are pulled. This makes the reading experience that much more immersive.

Get the Interactive Fairytale Storybooks from S$9.90 on Shopee.

10. Etch A Sketch

Unlike the other tablets available on the market that lets you draw anything you want with a stylus, the Etch A Sketch requires you to draw with just two knobs, one on the left, and one on the right.

Credit: Amazon Singapore

The left knob is used to draw lines left and right, and the right knob is used to draw lines up and down. If a curve is desired, the user would have to turn both knobs at the same time.

This is a classic drawing toy that doesn’t require any charging, batteries, or Wi-Fi. Plus, kids can be endlessly creative with this device. Once they are done with their sketch and they’re ready to start another one, they can just shake the device to erase it.

Purchase the Etch A Sketch on Amazon Singapore for S$21.98.

11. Bubble Gun/Bubble Wand

If you know you’re going to be waiting outdoors, consider bringing along a Bubble Gun or a Bubble Wand to keep your kids entertained with bubbles! There’s just something fascinating about bubbles that makes kids giggly. Furthermore, you can even get the devices in themes of their favourite cartoon, like Pinkfong, Baby Shark, Pororo, and Robocar!

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While this is a great tool to use outdoors in an open space, this may not be that good of a tool to use indoors as the soap from the bubbles can easily cause someone to slip and fall, so do make sure you use this with caution!

Purchase the Bubble Gun for S$15.50 and the Bubble Wand for S$15.90 on Shopee.

12. Rotating Kaleidoscope

Watch your kids as they adorably try to figure out how patterns within a Rotating Kaleidoscope change! This is definitely one of the more interesting toys for kids to play with because they get to see beautiful patterns simply by turning the cover.

Credit: Shopee

This also becomes a teachable moment as you can teach them how a kaleidoscope works! You can even challenge them to draw what they see.

The Rotating Kaleidoscope can be purchased in different designs for S$1.35 each on Shopee.