Enjoy simple, fun activities with the kids.
Parents have always worn many different hats, but over the past few weeks, they’ve been asked to put all of them on at once.
As the world learns what social distancing and self-isolation mean, families used to busy schedules jam-packed with school days, sports practices, and playdates are now finding themselves forced to stay home instead.
Getting a little cabin fever? We’ve got you covered! Today, we’re sharing 15 kid friendly activities that can help you bust the boredom, keep everyone sane, and even let you squeeze in a little personal time while they’re engaged.
Read on to learn how to make the most of your time together!
1. Love Note Treasure Maps
If your children can write, give them paper and crayons and ask them to write special notes to their immediate family members. Then, they can hide them around the house in special places where they know they’ll find them!
If they aren’t old enough yet, ask them what they want to say or make the notes for them. Then, everyone can create a short treasure map that will lead the recipient to their secret location. Keep the map to five steps or less to make sure it’s easy to follow!
2. Upside Down Art
Does life feel a little upside down right now? Why not turn that way yourself?
Line the underside of a long table completely with craft paper and let your kids climb beneath it. Then pass them a bucket of markers and let them color above their heads for a little while. It’s a fun way to get the giggles out and let them explore their creativity!
3. Outdoor ABC Scavenger Hunt
Fresh air is so refreshing during this time spent cooped up. Write the alphabet down the margin of a notebook, and take a walk in the backyard with the kids. See how many items they can find that start with the letters!
4. Nature Plate Faces
While you’re outside, let your brood turn into mini-Picassos! Cut a few ovals out of a cardboard box (or construction paper) and see if they can make them look like faces.
The catch? They can only use items they find outdoors! That means grass for hair and rocks for eyes!
5. Dance Party
Especially on days when the homeschool schedule is feeling a little overwhelming, sometimes you’ve just gotta dance! If you have an Amazon Alexa, Google Home or a similar device, ask it to play some of your family’s favorite tunes and crank it up.
Or put in a favorite CD or search for a beloved tune on YouTube. You can even check out these kid-appropriate Spotify playlists for inspiration!
6. Living Room Forts
They’re a staple of childhood, and for good reason. Living room forts are downright magical, made with love and imagination. To create an epic one, you’ll need the right gear.
Make sure you have plenty of cozy comforters, fuzzy pillows, and soft blankets on hand to create a calming space. If you’ve already put your winter bedding away, go ahead and bring it back out. Let them spend hours creating the perfect hideaway, then climb in there with them and read a story (another of the best kid friendly activities)!
7. Virtual Whale Watching
Zoos and museums around the country are now opening their virtual doors to online guests, allowing them front-row access to some of their wildest and most thrilling programs.
One of our favorites? The Beluga Whale webcam set up at the Georgia Aquarium! Not only is the exhibit totally cool, but it’s surprisingly relaxing and a great way to spend a few minutes between activities.
8. Family Bake-Off
Using only ingredients you have on hand, what can your family make for dessert tonight? Have a simple bake-off and challenge each other to come up with the sweetest, most unique concoction. Pair it with a healthy recipe for dinner, and you’ve got a well-balanced meal!
Talk a little about measurements while you’re in the kitchen and your math lesson for the day is done!
9. Indoor Picnic
On days when the weather won’t permit eating outside, you can still make lunchtime fun. Grab a blanket or a sheet and bring it into the living room for an indoor picnic!
Take turns playing the sing-song picnic memory game, where each person has to bring an imaginary item that starts with the same letter as their first name. Can they remember what everyone else is bringing?
10. A Minty Science Experiment
Now is a great time to focus on STEM activities that keep your child’s brain engaged. This elephant toothpaste science experiment is a great place to start!
Despite the name, this is definitely not real toothpaste. So what is it?
It’s a frothing, bubbling concoction that’s gigantic enough to clean Dumbo’s grin! Made using dry yeast, warm water, liquid dish soap, and hydrogen peroxide, it’s a classic recipe that’s sure to bring you plenty of gasps.
11. Online Museum Visits
Gather the kids around and let them click and explore. If a certain exhibit interests anyone, learn as much as possible about it! This could also be a great writing prompt for older kids, leading to an evening presentation in the living room.
12. Sensory Bins
Especially if your kids are preschool or elementary-aged, a sensory bin can be a ton of fun! Grab a box and fill it with just about anything you can find, including rice, beans, water beads, or kinetic sand.
Then, add in little trinkets, balls, and toys and give your kids a few plastic beach shovels. As they excavate for hours, they won’t even realize they’re practicing their hand-eye coordination!
13. Homemade Playdough
Run out of the real stuff and can’t head to the store? You likely already have everything you need to make your own playdough right at home!
This super-simple recipe breaks down everything you need and how to mix it. Let the kids choose their own colors and help you blend everything together. When you’re done, you’ll have soft, squishy dough that they’ll play with for weeks to come. It’s also a great stress reliever for adults!
14. Board Games
Now’s a great time to bring out those old board games collecting dust in the coat closet.
Gather everyone around the kitchen table and engage in a little friendly competition! From Chutes and Ladders to Scrabble, there’s no shortage of family-friendly options. Check out our article that outlines several board game options and includes suggestions for age appropriateness.
A classic boredom buster, charades is a great way to get the giggles out, relieve some tension and bond with your family. If there’s a significant variation in your kids’ ages, remember to create different cards for them so they’re not stuck with words they can’t portray.
Try These Kid Friendly Activities Together
While the current times are a little uncertain, there is a silver lining in them. Families around the world are rediscovering ways to get creative, spark imagination and make memories with one another.
This list of kid friendly activities is only the tip of the iceberg. Part of the fun is adding to it, discovering the simple joys that bring your family closer together.
Need anything? We’re all in this together, so reach out to our office at any time.