Keeping the kids busy indoors

Keeping the kids busy indoors

  1. Bake muffins. They’re easy enough for toddlers to help with and are best enjoyed straight out of the oven, which checks the instant gratification box. Bonus points if you can sneak a fruit or veggie into the batter.
  2. Create a scavenger hunt. Give the kids the first clue, which will lead them to the next clue and so on. At the end have some sort of “treasure” for them to find, or a treat such as a coupon for an ice cream sundae, which they can cash in that evening.
  3. Play a board game. Even better: introduce your children to a classic from your own childhood. Sorry or Game of Life, anyone?
  4. Complete a puzzle. This is a great way to encourage teamwork. Have the whole family work together to complete a puzzle—say 1,000 a pieces!
  5. Write a story. Have older kids pen a tale, then ask them to illustrate it. Younger kids can draw a picture of their favorite thing to do.
  6. Make slime. If you haven’t already banned slime from your home, whip up a fluffy version with this recipe.
  7. Put on a show. Have your kids come up with a script and costumes. Then grab a seat on the couch and watch the performance.
  8. Or make a movie. Let your kids use your phone (for filming purposes only) and have them act out a story with their toys (dolls or Lego people make especially good characters.) Send the finished product to your family and friends.
  9. Make pizza. Buy some dough or use this easy recipe to make your own. Then, let everyone choose their own toppings and declare it Pizza Night.
  10. Play cards. You likely already have a deck on hand and there are endless games for kids of all ages. Start out with Crazy Eights or Concentration for younger kids and let the older ones play Rummy or poker.
  11. Make playdough. It’s super easy and the cooking process will engage the kids even further.
  12. Look at old photographs. Get out your old photo albums and have fun reminiscing with your kids. Or if most of your photos are digital, let your kids help you organize them into photo books.
  13. Create an indoor obstacle course. Put away the breakables and turn your living room, playroom and/or basement into the set of American Ninja Warrior. (Or simply grab some tennis balls and have your kids toss them into a toy bin while climbing over the couch.)
  14. Convince them to clean. Tidying up a room is much more appealing if you can make a game out of it. Give them a space to clean, set a timer, and offer a reward for the fastest or most thorough job. (Watching them scurry around while sitting on the couch with a cup of coffee is optional.)
  15. Let them go swimming. In the bathtub that is. Put on bathing suits, fill up the tub, toss in some toys and let them splash around.
  16. Have an indoor picnic. Let your kids choose the menu, pack a basket and set up a blanket on your living room floor.
  17. Set up a spa day. Cut up some cucumber slices for your eyes, give everyone a robe (or comfy pajamas), and spend a few hours lounging around the house. Make a DIY face mask, give each other mani/pedis, and sip hot chocolate or tea.
  18. Go bowling. Set up a makeshift one in your basement by lining up empty plastic bottles and using a tennis ball to knock them down.
  19. Make friendship bracelets. Whether you use beads, embroidery floss or soda can tabs, friendship bracelets are super fun (and time-consuming) to make.
  20. Sing karaoke. Don’t have a karaoke machine? Just pull up the lyrics on your computer and go to town!


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