A List of Indoor Activities That Will Keep Kids Entertained While Staying at Home

Unsplash / Kelly Sikkema

Given the possibility of a twindemic – or the potential convergence of our annual flu season, which lasts from December to February in the US, with an expected “second wave” of coronavirus cases – we’re planning on staying indoors as much as possible this winter. Of course, your kids’ health and safety is paramount, but keeping your little ones entertained for hours on end is also vital for your sanity.

In an effort to make all the time we’re at home together a little easier, we came up with a list of easy, kid-friendly activities that will keep their minds occupied at home, whether you’re stocked up on crafting supplies or not.

Related: How I Finally Got Control Over My Kids’ Screen-Time Habit

Indoor Activities to Keep Kids Entertained While at Home

  1. Have a movie marathon. Thanks to streaming services, there are plenty of movies on Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+. Postpone your strict screen time rules and vege out in front of the TV.
  2. Make a fort. How many hours did you burn growing up building the perfect hideaway?
  3. Do an easy craft. No need to go over the top, just give your kiddos some construction paper and crayons and let their imaginations soar. Parents who are looking for ideas can take a peek at this list of fun crafts and science experiments for inspiration.
  4. Make an obstacle course. Use old pillows and toys to set up a quick-and-easy obstacle course in the living room. Just lay out a few instructions for your little ones to follow.
  5. Write letters to relatives. Have your kids craft a letter to a grandparent or family member. It also helps them practice their penmanship, talk about a win-win.
  6. Make a simple recipe. Get kids involved in the kitchen by having them help you prep lunch or dinner, with supervision, of course. Here’s a list of simple recipes to get you started.
  7. Do a puzzle. Amazon is chock-full of puzzles for kids of all ages. Prime one to your house and let the kids go wild.
  8. Get building. Use Legos or building blocks to create a true masterpiece. Go for a more complicated build, like a bridge, to give your kids the lowdown on basic physics.
  9. Cuddle up with a few books. There’s no such thing as too much reading, so carving out an hour to hunker down with your kids’ favorite titles is certainly a good idea.

Related: 26 Educational Shows For Younger Kids to Stream While They’re at Home

  1. Stage an impromptu concert. Ask your children to practice a favorite song or dance and have them perform it in front of the family in a post-dinner talent show.
  2. Plan a scavenger hunt. Lay out some clues to hidden treasures around the house to keep kids busy. Use this awesome printable for a fun holiday spin your kids will go nuts for.
  3. Have a board game night. A tried and true family favorite, getting a little competitive for a few hours will keep boredom at bay.
  4. Play a round of indoor games. Have little ones burn off some energy by playing a few rounds of LeapFrog, Simon Says, or Red Light, Green Light. You’ll thank us during nap time.
  5. Dig up some of those activity books. Have a few puzzle or coloring books laying around you usually reserve for family road trips? Now’s the time to break ’em out.
  6. Have a mini self-care day. DIY your own bath bombs, let children apply a face mask, and give each other little back massages for the ultimate relaxing experience.
  7. Decorate cardboard boxes. Let kids go to town coloring or painting any leftover boxes you have laying around for hours of fun.
  8. Print out coloring pages. Low on crafting supplies? No worries. There are plenty of free printable coloring pages online.
  9. Put on a play. Have your kids create and perform their own creation. Don’t forget to dip into the costume box!
  10. Break out the Play-Doh. Children can use squishy good stuff to make whatever they want! Encourage them to make a sculpture to get the creative juices flowing.

Related: The 3 Things Kids Can’t Do in Matthew McConaughey’s House Are So Smart, You’ll Want to Copy Him

  1. Use water. Fill your sink with dish soap and plenty of toys to keep toddlers entertained long enough to make lunch.
  2. Make slime. Sometimes a little mess goes a long way in terms of keeping your kids entertained. Try this easy-to-make DIY slime recipe to get the ball rolling.
  3. Stage a puppet show. Whether you have puppets already or need to make them from brown paper bags, it’s easy to get the kiddos involved in this hands-on activity.
  4. Game on! Have a Wii or Nintendo Switch in the house? Set up a tournament with a small prize involved to keep things interesting.
  5. Bowl indoors. You don’t need a blowing ball and a full set of pins to play. Just set up a few recycled bottles and use any old ball to get started.
  6. Introduce your kids to yoga or meditation. A little zen during uncertain times goes a long way. Try this Trolls-inspired yoga video to help little ones feel relaxed.
  7. Make your own jewelry. Have any beads or DIY kits stowed away? This is the best time to use them. You can also order your own kit online!
  8. Break out the temporary tattoos. An easy activity that your brood will no doubt get excited over, all you need is a bit of water to bring on the smiles.
  9. Play an educational game. Download an educational app on your phone on iPad and let the kids go at it.

Related: I Tested This Oprah-Approved Emergency Kit – and It Really Is Worth Every Penny

  1. Have an indoor camp out! Grab your sleeping bags and s’more ingredients and set up a mini camping site in your living room. We have a feeling your kids will love the change of pace.
  2. Make a collage or vision board. Help children cut out photos and words from magazines or newspapers and stick them to a sturdy piece of paper. They can hang them up in their rooms once their creations are complete!
  3. Go on a walk. Touching and climbing on playground equipment should be off-limits right now, but experts say taking a walk or playing outside is perfectly fine.
  4. Ride Disney attractions virtually. Fans young and old who are missing all things Disney can experience their favorite rides virtually, thanks to these handy first-person YouTube videos.
  5. Have a colorful bubble bath. Combine your kids’ shampoo with 1.5 cups of water and a little food coloring for maximum bathtub playtime.
  6. Call a family member. Have children call or video-chat a grandparent or close family friend to talk for a few minutes. After all, social distancing doesn’t apply to the phone!
  7. Make a sensory bin. Fill a plastic container with rice, pom-poms, beans, or kinetic sand and let little ones explore with their hands. Here are some ideas to get you started.
  8. Bake a pie. There are few things better than enjoying a piece of homemade pie under a blanket during the colder months. Whip out your favorite family recipe and have the kids help out in the kitchen. They’ll love learning how to roll out the crust!
  9. Attend a virtual book fair. Given the safety restrictions, Scholastic is hosting a virtual book fair for little ones this year. Check out its website to learn how your kiddos can participate.
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