Great ready, get set, have fun! Looking for an extra boost of creativity or simply new ways to have fun? Keep your kids engaged, happy, and learning with these 25 fresh ideas.
How do you keep kids busy?
Finding things to keep your kids occupied during the day is a full time job. As we’ve all had to adjust to spending more time indoors, we’ve realized how difficult it is to juggle being at home while also ensuring that your little ones are engaged, learning and having fun. There are tons of resources for working from home with little ones, but the most effective method that we’ve found is to maintain a schedule for both parents and children — just like during the regular school day.
For your children, it’s helpful to create a schedule for their day and do some pre-planning so that you have resources on hand. Consistency helps students focus, so start with a daily schedule. However, even the most thorough remote-learning plans won’t occupy students all day and most families will need to find additional activities. Filling additional time with online classes is a great way to supplement learning or simply encourage fun!
What are some fun activities for kids?
There are tons of available resources online for fun activities for kids! Whether you’re looking for musical story times with Books and Cookies or creating a theater production with your imagination with Treasure Trunk Theatre, there is a lot of fun to be had at home!
Reading for kids
It's hard to find a more enriching and accessible activity than reading. A few pages a day can help children improve concentration, their vocabulary, imagination, and so much more.
1. Storyline Online
This is a fun website where professional actors read popular picture books aloud. There are tons of books to choose from that range from kindergarten to 4th grade!
2. The Indy Lab
We love these literacy classes online, featuring play-based literacy classes for children. Their classes combine movement and games to reinforce early reading and writing skills. Great for kids ages 1-6, there’s tons to explore!
3. Read a book together!
As useful as online activities are, we always find ourselves going back to traditional books. No matter if you’re loving new books like Juno Valentine or turning back to old favorites like Charlotte's Web, books are our favorite escape and way to come together as a family.
Arts and Crafts for kids
Whether it's drawing, painting, doodling, or craft projects — art is so beneficial for kids! When your little ones get artsy they improve fine and gross motor skills, they learn to become more aware of themselves, express emotions, and more!
4. Private Picassos
Explore materials and creative problem — solving through art! The award-winning and family-loved educators guide little ones through animal exploration, still art, fruit and veggie printmaking, and so much more.
5. Doodles with Mo Willems
This iconic class has been increasingly popular over the last few weeks! Learners worldwide can draw, doodle and explore new ways of writing by visiting Mo’s studio virtually once a day. You can choose to tune in live every weekday at 1:00 p.m. ET or stream the videos whenever you’re ready online.
6. Scribble Art Workshop
A developmentally-based art program for children as young as eighteen months to adults. The philosophy at Scribble Art is to build creativity as a life skill that will serve students beyond the art studio. Whether it’s sculpture, drawing or painting, there are tons of opportunities to create something magical!
Step-by-step, user created instructions on how to make just about anything! From instructions on building a digital microscope to sewing a zipper to creating a marshmallow launcher.
What are fun things to do with your family?
The best way to spend time is to do an activity that gets the entire family involved! Here are a few suggestions that can incorporate multiple different age groups and need some adult supervision.
Cooking for kids
Cooking is our favorite activity to do as a family! Beyond building skills like math, dexterity, and an appreciation for food and nutrition — it’s just a fun way to spend time together. Incorporate skills like washing, mixing, timing, measuring, and sprinkling…and mainly, embrace the mess! Just like your kids on the playground, embrace the culinary chaos. Trust that even though flour will be spilled and clothes will get dirty, fun will and should ensue.
8. Choose a recipe
This is the best part! Encourage your little one to follow their taste buds and choose the recipe for the family. Guide them with either/or questions like “sweet or salt” and “hot or cold”?
If you’re looking for a more guided experience, Feshmade is offering their popular cooking classes digitally! Their program is designed to make families more aware of healthy lifestyles through creative, hands-on classes for children, their parents and caregivers. Whether you’re looking to bake cookies, homemade pasta making, or joining them for Taco Tuesday — their expert instruction will guide you every step of the way!
10. The Connected Chef
The Connected Chef has virtual family classes every Tuesday and Thursday! Their free digital classes are structured around a very simple recipe that requires minimal ingredients.
11. Raddish Kids
Raddish Kids is a meal kit box that is made just for children! The cooking club has something for all ages. Young children work alongside an adult, while older kids and teens indulge their culinary curiosity! And it's perfect for picky eaters — kids who cook, eat!
Mindfulness and Yoga
Practicing yoga and mindfulness has numerous benefits for children and parents alike! If you're like us, it’s hard to imagine your energy-filled little ones zening out and taking a second to slow down…. That’s where yoga comes in! Yoga teaches strength and flexibility, while also promoting confidence and engagement with others. Some classes offer themes, while others include story times, music and other fun elements to ease little ones into the discipline. Grab a mat, comfy workout gear and get ready to flex, stretch and stay zen!
12. Buddha Belly Kids Yoga
One of the most popular yoga classes for kids out there! Their free classes are dedicated to nurturing kids' innate desire for movement and play. The classes explore yoga through poses, movement, and relaxation while encouraging creativity and fun! Classes are a balance of structure and spontaneity, while honoring each child’s unique energy.
13. Cosmic Kids
These theme-based yoga classes are designed specially for kids aged 3+. Popular among parents and loved by children, Cosmic Kids follows a specific theme during their programs that range between 5 minutes to up to over an hour minutes!
14. Headspace for Kids
Available to all subscribers, kids (and their parents) can enjoy fun, engaging activities that teach them the basics of mindfulness. They’ll practice breathing exercises, visualizations and even try some focus-based meditation. Of course, different exercises work best for different ages so Headspace has customized the sessions for three age groups: 5 and under, 6-8 and 9-12.
Acting and Imagination
Young children learn by imagining and doing. Have you ever seen a young child pick up a stick and pretend it’s a wand? What about picking up a rock and imaging it’s a rocket? Imagination and pretend play builds skills in many essential developmental areas. The best benefit is that it’s something that parents and children can do with limited resources.
15. Treasure Trunk Theatre
Go on an imagination adventure! Sing-a-long as you row your boat down the stream, twinkle like a little star, visit Old MacDonald's farm, and more!
16. Broadway Bees
Broadway Bees musical theater classes are great for children 3-12 years old. Their musical theater programs offer vocal technique, vocal performance, drama, dance, improvisation, audition technique and repertoire all in a fun and inclusive learning environment.
17. Create a fort
There’s nothing better than creating a home within your home! Have your little ones scout out a spot, choose a name and pull in their favorite things. We have all the steps you need here!
18. Start a talent show!
Kids love to showcase what they are learning and can do well. Create a talent show for the entire family with group and solo acts. Then let your little ones (and yourself!) shine!
What are some fun activities to do at home?
Still seeking inspiration? There is always tons of fun to be had at home! Here’s how we’re having fun and staying safe indoors.
19. Take a virtual tour
You can explore new places without leaving the comfort of your own home! Take a tour of the Monterey Bay Aquarium, checkout the dinosaurs in the National Museum of Natural History, or check out the adorable Pandas at the Atlanta Zoo. Looking to go a bit further? Check out the Vatican's seven popular sites!
20. Create an obstacle course
Your home is your jungle gym! Get creative and get some energy out by creatin an obstacle course indoors. Tape down a line to create a balance beam, spin in a circle 5 times, or jump like a bunny-- the possibilities are endless. Pro-parenting tip to make the game last longer? Make them run through the course a few times!
21. Create a touch-and-feel box
Most preschoolers flock to the classroom sensory table as soon as the teachers pull it out. So there is little doubt they will love this entertaining challenge. Find a shoe box or any box that has a lid on it. Cut a hole in one of the sides of the box just large enough for your child’s hand. When you’re ready, put an item inside the box and have your children guess what it is. Get creative! Nothing is too silly.
22. Pick a number
On a sheet of paper, write down the numbers 1 through 10. Then for each number, assign a specific task — run in a circle, say the alphabet, sing a song, etc. Then cut up small cards with one number on each card. Then have your little one pull a single number and match that number up to the action. Then have your child perform the action! You can replicate this to determine a schedule for the day, figure out a bedtime book, or even help out with chores.
23. Number hunt
Write numbers 1 through 10 (or 1 through 20 depending on how well your child is mastered numbers!) on paper and hide them through out the house. Your child will have to collect all of the numbers and gather them in order! Get creative about where you put them!
24. Pouring station
Create a pouring station to practice holding a steady hand and better understanding measurement. This activity is a great way to teach the practical life skill pouring. It gives toddlers the chance to practice a skill they will need and use often in life in a safe, engaging manner. Put a couple of containers that are different sizes and volumes in a large plastic bin. Then encourage your little one to either transfer all of the liquid into one larger vessel or to transfer liquid from one vessel to another!
25. Make play dough
Make your own play dough with ingredients from around the house! It take less than 5 minutes and costs you less than $1 to make. Check out our team’s favorite Play Dough Recipe!