There is always a rainy day here or there during the summer that keeps your children indoors. It is already a challenge to keep the kids occupied without them complaining that they are bored. So being stuck indoors on a rainy day only perpetuates this. So here are a few ideas to try with your children to keep them busy inside, without being glued to the TV or video games, until the rain passes.
Make Friendship Pins
This is an old past time trend from when I was a young girl. Beading large safety pins and trading them with our friends was fun to do, fun to create and encouraged everyone to be friends with everyone. You don’t have to stop at safety pins, create necklaces and bracelets, key chains and zipper tabs as well.
Take some old, plain T-shirts and get creative! Tie Dye, fabric painting and even applying buttons, sequence and beads can be fun and entertaining. You don’t have to stop at T-shirts, how about pants, hats and socks.
Board Games / Card Games
This has always been a favourite in my house. There are so many board games to choose from, and the list of card games goes on and on. Just to name a few:
Go Fish – Old Maid – Crazy 8’s – Oh Shoot – Cheat – Queen of Spades – Grunt and Groan – War – Slap Jacks – Uno – Skip Bo – Rummoli – 21 – Hearts – Solitaire – Free Cell – Rummy – Gin Rummy – Euchre – Poker – Canasta – Spades – Cribbage – Bridge – Kings in the Corner – 52 Pick Up
Cards can be fun as a contest to see who can build the tallest house of cards, as well.
This can keep kids busy for a long time, if you play it right. Make sure you have a treasure at the end of the hunt, for a reward and the more creative you get with this indoor game, the more fun your children will have.
Create a Comic Strip
There a couple of ways to go about this activity, but whichever way you decide to take, it will be fun regardless. I grew up creating a typical strip with super heroes and a plot, weapons and super powers. It is fun to make up your own name for superheroes. Drawing boxes across a page and developing a story. Another way to create a comic strip is making a flip movie. Drawing figures slightly different on each page to make the character look like it’s moving, as you quickly flip through the pages.
This is my daughters favourite thing to do. She says she finds slime to be so satisfying. There are kits your can purchase now that includes all the ingredients you need to create this incredible goo. Adding styrofoam balls, glitter, and beads make this creative activity interesting.
As long as this activity doesn’t get out of hand, it can be really fun and silly. The softer the pillow, the better. And take a video of your children beating each other up with pillows then play it back for them in slow motion. Enjoy the laughs.
Yummy gooey cookies are everyone’s favourite treat. Take some time and bake a batch of cookies from scratch, decorate them in icing, candy and nuts (allergies permitting), cut them into fun shapes and experiment with different flavours. And if the activity develops into a flour fight, who cares, it’s all about having some fun.
Build a Fort
This can happen in many ways from using cardboard and blankets to rearranging furniture and stacking objects. This old past time opens the creative mind to playing make believe, and even just giving the kids a hide out, for a secret club.
Decorate Your Bike
Bring your bicycle inside and let the creative juices start to flow. Decorate your bike with cards, beads, glitter, baskets, glow in the dark necklaces, old CD discs, pompoms or tassels, streamers, bells, flags or flowers, balloons, ribbon, sequence, pipe cleaners and so much more!
What young child doesn’t like to have fun shapes and characters painted on their face? They can paint each other’s faces or you can paint for them.
Make Sock Puppets
Whether you use glue or you sew these fun creatures together, it is something that can bring hours of fun and creativity for your child. All you need are some old socks, cleaned of course, buttons, beads, old jewelry, paper, felt, ribbon, paint…. Once their puppets are ready to use, build a cardboard stage for a puppet show.
Origami / Paper Airplanes
Build a Paper Airplane, then have a contest to see who’s flies the furthest. Make a Cootie Catcher and animal shapes. The sky’s the limit!
Paint a Mural
Grab an old bed sheet or roll out a strip of sketching paper. Then paint! Create a cityscape, the ocean, a garden, a race car track, or whatever your fancy. Everyone can be involved.
Fairly inexpensive, and the creative ideas are endless. It is great for making Christmas Tree ornaments, window hangings, garden decorations and even wall hangings. It is a nice quiet activity to keep the kids occupied.
Make Homemade Pizza’s
This can be a creative activity. Everyone gets to make their own pizza, exactly how they want it. Extra sauce, load on the cheese, pile up the toppings or just have a plain cheese pizza. It’s fun, it’s yummy, and it solves the problem of what’s for dinner tonight.
Make a Magazine
Do you have a fashion diva? A sports fanatic? A makeup artist? A car enthusiast? Let them create their very own magazine, with articles, advertisements and games inside. They can make this with craft papers and hands on materials or on the computer. Either way, it’s a great way to use the imagination.
Gather objects from around the house, and set up a store. Place stickers on the objects with prices, gather the cloth grocery bags and go shopping!
You can take the photos you have stuffed away in a box somewhere, or you can take some goofy pictures today, print them off and make a memory keepsake. Whichever, this can be a nice afternoon of creativity.
Make Over / Spa Day
This is perhaps more for the girly girls out there, but ya never know, some of you boys may enjoy a little pampering too. Play some relaxing nature music, set up all of your supplies needed, and begin. From facials, to a mani-pedi, new hair-do and even a back massage, everyone can benefit from this idea. Sitting all in a row, one in front of each other, and play alphabets or words on each other’s back, then try to guess what was drawn on your back.
For more summer activity ideas: