Here at Sawyer, we’re always on the lookout for the best activities to do with our families. For the times when you are stuck indoors for longer periods of time, you may need an extra creative boost to think of enough games, crafts, projects, and content to keep your energetic little ones engaged.
We’re here to help! Consider this your go to indoor survival kit for days when the weather isn’t so great, when battling cold or flu season, or when you have to keep things a little more mellow at the home front.
Curate a boredom box
Whether you call it a boredom box or a busy bag—this activity toolkit can be a lifesaver to help guide any themed playtime or specific craft projects. The possibilities are endless! Start by gathering available materials and build up your box. Pinterest is a great resource for additional inspiration.
- Craft materials - glue, beads, string, yarn, felt, stickers, pom poms, pipe cleaners, popsicle sticks, buttons, googly eyes, paints, construction paper.
- Small toys - animal figurines, dolls, blocks, trucks, cars, shovels.
- Recycled materials - tissue boxes, cardboard, clean jars, water bottles, paper towel and toilet paper tubes.
- Imaginative materials - costumes, props, puppets, hats, scarves, musical instruments.
- Building materials - legos, blocks, magnatiles, lincoln logs, stackable cups.
Once you’ve assembled these items, come up with a list of prompts for potential projects. For example, you might instruct your child to build a robot out of the materials, create a self portrait, or put on a show featuring their favorite zoo animals. No idea is too silly! If your child isn’t at a reading age, you can partner with them to help brainstorm new ways to explore the boredom box. Want to level up the stakes? Create a Food Network “Chopped” mystery basket inspired version and have your child complete the task using only a few random items.
Family group games
While we’re still fans of the classic card and board games for a day of indoor play, here are a few of our Sawyer team favorites for family group activities.
Fun for the entire family! Gather pillows, blankets, tents, and more to make a fort that can fit the whole fam. Once your masterpiece is finished, you can have a picnic, watch a movie, or just enjoy a little quiet (or not so quiet) time together.
Silly dance party/family freeze dance
Put on your favorite kid friendly jams and have a group dance party! You can add a level of challenge depending on the age of your children by making it a freeze dance. When the music stops, everyone has to freeze or strike a silly pose.
DIY indoor bowling
Set up your “pins” (water bottles, tin cans, plastic cups) in your hallway or in an open area of your home. You can get creative and use pool noodles to create a lane if available. Divide into teams or take turns rolling a ball down the hall or lane to knock down the pins. You can turn this into a fun math or counting activity by adding numbers to the pins as you keep track of the score.
Family yoga & guided meditation
With so many streaming options available, practicing yoga and mindfulness can be a nice way to reset while also letting your children in on the fun. There are many free options for you to stream online. Two of our favorites are Cosmic Kids Yoga and Stop, Breathe & Think.
Fun in the kitchen
Create your own family “restaurant.” Put your kids to work in the kitchen through play! Give your child an apron, notepad, tray and simple food they can easily carry. Assign roles for each family member as if you were opening your own restaurant. Depending on your child’s age, you can use a play kitchen and pretend food or for older kids, encourage them to help prep and cook along with you. There are so many benefits to cooking as a family. Check out our most recent blog post on the topic featuring our favorite cooking providers.
Need more inspiration? Here are some additional things we love!
- Make Your Own Playdough (a Sawyer fan favorite created by The Dough Project)
- Soap and water sensory bins (a great way to educate little ones on keeping hands clean)
- Germs experiment (looking to explain the Coronavirus to your children? This is a fun way to demonstrate the importance of soap in fighting germs)
- Sing along with Ramblin’ Dan’s Freewheeling Band and Lavender Blues