Boredom busters: 10 fun things to do at home with the kids
Updated: Aug 29, 2020
Whilst we're not panic buying toilet roll, and we're still monitoring the COVID-19 updates here at London for Kidz HQ, we're also thinking ahead to fun activities we can do at home just in case we do have to self-isolate at some point (eek!). And while, of course, we love our rugrats to the moon and back, that doesn't mean we want to spend endless hours pretending to be a Pokemon, dressing up as a Disney princess or relying on gadgets! Read on for the cheap and cheerful activity ideas that are fun not only for the small humans, but for parents too.
1. Build a den and have a carpet picnic
If, like us, you haven't gotten round to buying one of those uber cool kids' teepees yet, then pull out your sheets and set up camp under the dining table. Kids LOVE homemade dens and campsites, and they're easy peasy to make too. Let imaginations run wild and get the kids to plan the build, prep their materials, and then get busy with construction. Blankets or bed sheets work best across a table, although you can create a pretty impressive den using four chairs and a few blankets.
Once you're fully constructed, treat the kiddos to a carpet picnic in their new den, and invite all their teddy bears!
2. Ready, steady... balloon race!
We don't know about you, but our own kids have been getting busy in school recently with lots of fun STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) activities, including making a balloon-powered racing car. We love this guide by Institute of Imagination which gives the full lowdown on how to make a super cool, nippy little number. Warning: the competition for fastest car WILL be fierce.
3. Break out the pasta
Hopefully you still have a bag or two of pasta lurking in the cupboards, despite the pasta-hoarding that seems to be a supermarket-wide issue right now (grrrr to you COVD-19). Raid the cupboards for some food colouring and string, and then make snazzy dry pasta necklaces and macaroni art. With Mother's Day just around the corner, the little ones will love whipping up something special for mummy, we reckon. Parents: wear their creations with pride! If you need ideas, check out this guide to five pasta crafts by HoneyKids Asia.
4. Ready the crayons and pencils
It has to be said, we think that colouring in is one of the best activities of all time to do with the kids. Google your kids' fave characters, print out a heap of colouring sheets and then busy yourselves with your fabulous colouring in skills: brownie points if you stay within the lines. Minimal effort, maximum peace and quiet.
5. Book yourself in for a makeover
A home salon run by the kids is sure to bring about plenty of laughs when it comes to dramatic makeup and backcombed, bird's nest hair. Chances are you've not had time to get a manicure in a while (#mumlife : we get it), so now's your chance! Probably best to hide your expensive makeup before the kids go wild with your Chanel lippy and Dior blusher though...
6. Roll the dice...
No room for bored kids when it comes to board games! We've always loved unleashing the family competitive streak with board game hits such as Game of Life, Guess Who, Frustration and Blokus. Chess is always a big hit too: teach them how to play if they don't know already and prepare to be in check mate pretty swiftly if our speedy little Chess-learners are anything to go by. Hit the charity shops and boot sales (they should be starting up again now that Spring is on the horizon) for secondhand games to add to your stockpile.
7. Go on a treasure hunt
Aha me hearties: there's treasure to be found and the kids need to busy themselves finding it! Whip up a map of your home and stash small goodies all over for young adventurers to discover. Tip: As Easter is just a hop, skip and a jump away, why not make it an Easter egg treasure hunt?
If you have younger kids, mark the hidden treasure on the map, but for older offspring, create some fun riddles for them to solve. Once you're done, reverse the tables and get them to set one up for you.
8. Jazz up some rocks
Three activities in one here: #1: gather some stones and rocks from the garden/local area. #2: paint and decorate your rocks and turn them into something fabulous (tip: have a look at Painted Rock Life for creative inspo). #3: Go back out into the local area and plant the rocks for other people to find (if you can bear to part with them that is: our smallest loved this idea but when it came to it, he brought them all back home to put on display in his room).
9. Make your own playdough
Believe it or not, making playdough is so easy, even the kids can do it. Which is handy when this guide is all about fun things to do at home with the kids. Pop over to Action for Children to check out instructions, and then once your dough is ready to go (or should we say 'ready, steady... dough?), see who can make the best playdough creature of all time.
10. Become a Master Builder
Tried, tested and still a mahoosive hit with kids of all ages, break out the buckets of Lego you're sure to have knocking about the house, and unleash your Master Builder skills. And yes, we are still feeling rather proud of our recent ‘out-of-space farm complete with vet, hair salon and ice cream parlour' creation. In fairness though, the kids' double decker bus which turned into a fighter jet was also awesome. One might even say 'everything is awesome.' We'll just leave you now with that little ear worm...