Thursday, January 29, 2009

Indoor Activities for Kids--More Ideas

After a couple of weeks of showing you things you can do with your children, I realized that this series could go on forever so I decided to condense my remaining ideas in one last post. If I come across new and unique ideas I will feature them but for now, this is the end of this particular series.

Things we enjoy doing on a cold day that I haven't already featured in my posts:

Children's Puzzles

Reading Aloud (Extra fun if Mommy crawls in the tent to read to the kids)

Playing School or Church or Grocery Shopping (the kids are always playing things like this together)

Cutting and pasting

Making playdough/Playing with Playdough

Helping me bake new things or cook up interesting recipes (try making homemade crackers, mini-pizzas, Stone Soup, fruit pizza, colored pancakes, etc.)

Games! Memory, Candy Land, sorting foam alphabet letters, alphabet Bingo, regular Bingo, Don't Break the Ice, Ants in the Pants, Barrel of Monkeys, large dominoes, and that one where the Alligator bites you are all ones that come to mind as being good for young children.

Painting (I featured finger painting but my kids love all kinds of painting!)

Stamping (I've found washable paints work much better than trying to teach them to stamp using an ink pad. Ask me how I know this.............)

Sorting and matching games using everyday objects (buttons, coins, magnets, pencils and pens, socks, etc.)

Balloon volleyball (a favorite with my brothers and I growing up; use a piece of yarn stretched between two walls as the net and play for hours!)

Beach party (blow up an inflatable pool and some beach balls and floaties and let the kids have a dry swim party indoors)

Stacking canned goods or blocks

Magna-doodles--Ali received one from each of her Grandmas this year for Christmas so we have two and this toy has been the #1 most educational toy around our home and they are used throughout the day, every day and on car trips!

Designing roads and cities for matchbox cars on large rolls of newsprint (my kids won't get to do this much since they got a road and city rug for Christmas)

Lacing cards

Stringing beads on a shoestring

Exercise cards (my friend Heather gave us these last year and they are tons of fun for squirrely kids. My former neighbor girls begged to do these every day!)

Tub of beans (just like the tub of cornmeal, this keeps them entertained for a long time!)

Playing with pots and pans and kitchen utensils (I admit I do not do this much since I hate washing extra dishes but kids love to look at your kitchen tools)

Making picture books out of magazines and construction paper

Going to the Children's Museum or library

Singing together and learning to use musical instruments. If you don't have any, make some! An oatmeal container makes a nice drum!

Arts and Crafts (I could list dozens of projects, but instead I'll lump them together and just say that if things are really bad at your house, maybe it's time to whip out a quick project or start doing a collage or tile picture or learning how to make origami frogs and balloons)

Chores (My kids are still young enough to enjoy doing them! Yes, it takes a lot longer with them "helping" but it does keep them busy!)

Dancing to music

Having a tea party

Doing pilates together

Look through photo albums

Beanbag or hackey sack toss

Playing with Puppets

Making up a play to perform for Daddy or grandparents

Playing Garage Sale

Growing up, I enjoyed looking through this book for fun ideas:
365 TV-Free Activities You Can Do with Your Child

This is just a small sampling of all the fun you can have in spite of being home-bound! The more activities you plan for, the less likely the kids will be to make you bonkers!


Sheila said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sheila said...

(I posted and then deleted my comment because I hadn't checked to follow the comments. The comment below is my original comment.)

I am enjoying your ideas about what to do on cold days, but I do wonder if you have had any suggestions for older kids. My kids are 12 and 8, and while we have enjoyed many of the activities you have mentioned in their younger years, they have outgrown a lot of them. I'm wondering if any of your readers with older kids have ideas for older kids. We have done a lot of cooking, and both kids read a lot. I'm just kind of stumped for low-cost ideas now that they are older.


The Three 22nds said...

My little boys are currently "playing" clue: master Detective. They like to move the pieces around. They also like to "play" trivial pursuit (they like the pies).

So as long as I can keep the pieces from getting lost, we are all happy!

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