Our Stay-at-Home Activities with Kids lists are opportunities for quality time with your children and hopefully are boredom busters for everyone who has spent so much time at home lately. Other lists already published:
Quality time happens when we least expect it, often around the smallest and least expensive events. You can’t schedule it. It doesn’t take a lot of time. Instead, it takes a lot of small moments. Be prepared for a “magical” moment when doing any of the things in our lists. As long as you are fully tuned into your child, you and your child can make an amazing connection. You could learn something really important about him. She could show you how important you are to her. Your hearts will connect.
Stay-At-Home Activities, Part 4
38. Let’s all scream for ice cream. Make homemade ice cream. You can find recipes in most cookbooks, at the library, or on the Internet. If you want an adventure, try making ice cream the old fashioned way in a tin can. Or, use an ice cream maker, if you have one or can borrow one. Some recipes don’t require any special equipment – they just go directly in your freezer. Little known fact: it has been reported that there are over 1000 different ice cream flavors.
39. Let’s play puppets. Have a puppet show. For puppets you can use stuffed animals, dolls, hand puppets, marionettes, and even old socks that you have drawn faces on. The show can be inside or outside. A stage can be a chair, table, box, etc. Make up the story and name the show. If you can safely perform it for the family or neighbors, be as fancy as you like – with tickets, refreshments, etc. Otherwise, you can film it on your phone and send it over the phone or internet.
40. Let’s tell jokes. Ask your child to tell a joke as his “ticket” to each meal. For young children, ask them to make a silly face or a silly sound. For older children, you can find knock-knock jokes, riddles, and plays on words at the library or on the Internet. Read some jokes to your child and let him repeat them through the day or print them for your child and let him read them through the day.
Q: Knock, knock—-Who’s There?—-Who—-Who Who? A: Is there an owl in there?
Q: What gets wetter the more it dries? A: A towel.
Q: Why can’t your nose be 12 inches long? A: Because then it would be a foot!
Q: What has one head, one foot and four legs? A: A Bed
Q: How many letters are in The Alphabet? A: There are 11 letters in The Alphabet
41. Let’s build a special place. Build a tent or fort. It can be in or out of the house. You can use a real tent or blankets, tablecloths, and furniture. Let your child decide what the tent or fort is all about – a secret “mom and me” club, hiding out from monsters, a lab for making a power potion, etc. Once the fort is done, play pretend together. Let your child know when you start playing pretend and announce when you are done pretending. This announcement is important for helping them learn what is pretend and what is real.
42. Let’s act it out. Let your child choose a favorite story and act it out. Pick out just one small section of the story, if your child is young. You can do several sections with older children. If it is safe, you can have neighbors join or if not, you can each play different parts. Make up costumes from things you have around the house – just different hats can work, if that’s all you have. If you are playing more than one part, having a different hat for each part can help you switch from one to another. Perform the “play” for your family or neighbors in-person, if it is safe, or on film that you can share on the phone or internet.
43. Let’s play house designers. Make a new room. Choose a spot in the house – child’s bedroom, play area, TV room, etc. Tell your child you are going to play being “designers.” Together, take all the moveable stuff out of the room. Tell your child he can decide where to put things back into the room. Tell him you will leave the room “his way” for one day to test how it works, and when the test is over, you will be in charge of what to do with the room. Take before and after pictures. Be sure to check in with your child about how the room worked during the test period.
44. Let’s wonder. Play “What Do You Wonder About?” Pick a state or country to learn about. Ask your child, “What Do You Wonder about Alaska (or any other state or country he might be interested in)?” You’ll need your computer or some books to find answers to his questions. Here is how you play.
- You each take turns asking the question, “What do you wonder about …?”
- After each question, the person being asked the question makes a guess about the answer and the other person agrees or disagrees.
- Then, look up the answer together in a book or on the computer.
- If the question is too complicated to easily find an answer, break it down into parts and try to find an answer to just part of the question. Over time, keep looking for more information to add to the answer until your child is satisfied with the answer. Remember, young children like simple responses, so don’t dig more deeply than your child seems to need.
45. Let’s have Sunday sundaes. Make your own ice cream sundaes. Set out several ice cream flavors and toppings and let each person make their own. Have each person name their sundae. Once their sundaes are built, let each person tell the group its name and what it is going to taste like – as though he or she is the star of a cooking show.
46. Let’s play storyteller. Help your child tell you a story. Notice the types of characters he chooses – children like him, superheroes that can’t be real, or animals that come to life. Notice what the problem is in the story and what feelings are in the story – is someone mad, scared, happy, sad? About what? Notice how the story ends – good, not so good, or not at all. If the story doesn’t end at all, you could talk about possible ways it might end and let him choose the way he likes best. If your child is old enough, you could have him write his story or use a keyboard, if he is old enough to learn the important skill of keyboarding.
47. Let’s draw a story. Draw a story. Have your child draw the pictures for a story. It can be a story your child tells you (or has told you in the past) or one you tell your child. Even older children can enjoy doing this if they have any interest in art. They might prefer to use photographs, make a movie, or cut out magazine pictures to illustrate the story.
48. Let’s parade. Have a costume parade. You can use old Halloween costumes or you can make new costumes out of things you have around the house, including old newspapers and craft paper. Don’t give out any candy at your parade – so this doesn’t just become an early Halloween. For a bigger parade, dress up stuffed animals and dolls to add to your parade or ask neighbors to join if it is safe to do so. To make the parade extra special add music to march to.
For more activities: