With the onset of Covid and the emergence of different strains ever so often, lockdowns and social distancing have become the new norm. As a result, kids, especially, are spending more time at home. Now, more than ever, parents must get creative and innovative when helping their children effectively manage their time. Let’s face it, sometimes as parents, it can be quite challenging to keep kids engaged for an extended period. Here are ten fun activities for kids at home.
1. Arts and Crafts
Engaging kids in art and crafts is probably the oldest trick in the book. As cliché as this might be among the many other activities for kids at home that you can find out there, it works, every time. Kids love getting their little hands messy, using their imagination and just overall expressing themselves creatively. If you run out of ideas, just do a quick search online: “art and craft activities for kids at home” or “fun projects for kids” and you’ll be amazed at the wide range of ideas you will find.
2. Treasure Hunt
A Treasure Hunt is another great option if you are looking for fun activities for kids at home. It’s not only fun, but it helps to develop your kid’s critical thinking and problem-solving skills. They will have to use clues and follow steps to figure out the next clue, and the next, until they eventually find the “treasure”. Make sure this treasure is something they like or are interested in so that they will want to do this activity again. A good treasure hunt always gets the job done. You know what they say, “time flies when you’re having fun”.
Who doesn’t love karaoke? Well, why not throw that in the mix of fun activities for kids at home. Make it a family event. Not only is this fun, but it’s a good way to get your kids to showcase their talents and work on making presentations in front of other people. It’s also a bonding opportunity as you get to know your kids’ favourite songs and they get to know yours. If you want, you could mix it up a little; you know, make it more challenging. Try karaoke with songs from other countries. That way, your child gets to learn about a new culture and practice new languages. In turn, you help them to develop an appreciation and respect for different kinds of people from an early age.
What better way to get your child in tune both physically and mentally? Nowadays, children spend way too much time in the house on their devices, if you ask me. Engaging your kids in a good game of tennis, football or basketball, for example, is certainly among the top choices if you’re looking to find fun activities for kids at home. Invite your kids outdoors for an activity that will get them up and moving for a change. While you’re at it, make it into a competition. Kids love competing. Set up an obstacle course, and challenge them to overcome these obstacles within a certain time frame. Not only is this fun and keeps them physically fit and flexible, but think about the many skills they’ll be developing in the meantime. Skills such as teamwork, critical thinking, problem-solving, and endurance, just to name a few.
Everybody loves a good movie. Allowing your kids to watch a movie might be one of the first things that come to mind when you think of activities for kids at home. It’s a little played out, right? Wrong! You just need to try a different approach. How about you make an event of it? Create make-believe movie tickets and money for kids to use at your make-believe concession stand. The whole works! Maybe you could even invite your kid’s closest friends over or keep it a family affair. Whatever the case may be, this is another great way to engage kids at home. This is also a good opportunity to develop their social and situational communication skills.
6. Cooking and Baking
As I said, kids love getting their hands messy. Cooking and baking are among the traditional activities for kids at home. It started with our parents’ parents, their parents before that and so on. Unfortunately, this tradition has been dying more and more with each generation as we become more consumed with our jobs and other activities. However, here we have an opportunity to bring back this tradition. Take some time to go into the kitchen, cook dinner or maybe bake some cookies and bring your little one along. Start them off with easier tasks. Like putting ingredients in a container, mixing them together, you know, simple stuff. See how well they handle themselves. Then, gradually introduce them to the more challenging tasks. This is not just a learning experience for your child, but also a bonding one. In addition, it’s an opportunity to nurture your child’s independence and creative expression.
7. Indoor Games
Off the top of my head: charades, puzzles, board games, musical chairs, Ludo and chess are just a few of the many indoor activities for kids at home. With a quick Google search, you’ll find you simply cannot run out of ideas for indoor games and educational activities for kids. Say by some odd chance you do run out of ideas, create a game. How about that? Challenge your kids to create the rules even. Kids like feeling like they’re in charge, so let them take the reins on this one. This way they work on their leadership and ethical thinking skills while having fun.
Books are the basic tools used as learning activities for kids. Books help them to learn new words and new ways to express themselves. They are also an excellent way for kids to utilize their imaginative skills. Set up a library system at home where kids can borrow a book and must return the borrowed book in order to get another; this teaches them responsibility. Get them interested in a book series that will keep them reading as they will be eager to find out what will happen next. Many kids learning to read books, however, will not be too excited about it at first. How can you make reading fun and exciting for them? Well, start with smaller books that have lots of pictures. Big books with lots of words can be intimidating. Also, you can find out what they are interested in and get them books about that topic. Is it cars, music, animals, or fashion maybe? Wherever their interests lie, that’s always a good place to start.
9. Science Experiments
Science experiments are not just learning activities for kids that are older but can also be activities for preschool kids. Exploring fun projects for kids can help to satisfy your child’s curious mind and develop a scientific appreciation. Figuring out why things are the way they are is an exciting way in which you can keep kids engaged at home. There are many science experiments to choose from online. Whether it’s a simple experiment, like the “Floating Egg” or a more complex one, like a “Baking Soda Volcano”, kids will definitely have a blast building their experiments and seeing how they turn out in the end.
If you want an out-of-the-box idea as far as activities for kids at home are concerned, then gardening is the way to go. Planting and watching things grow is a great opportunity to teach kids environmental responsibility, patience and endurance. Gardening can be a long and tedious process and many are daunted by it. It’s not the everyday activity you would give your kids to do, but you might be surprised how well it works to keep them busy. Give kids their own set of gears and tools, allow them to plant something for themselves and teach them how to care for their plants each day. Kids will be excited to see all their hard work pay off when their plants begin to grow and flourish.
Well, those are my two cents: ten fun activities to engage kids at home. It’s not a size fit, however. You must now take time to assess which of these activities will best suit you and your child’s particular needs. Whichever ones you choose, however, it’s a win.
Patrice Comrie holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in modern languages from the University of the West Indies in Jamaica. She received intensive training in language, linguistics, literature, translation, and interpretation. She is proficient in English, Spanish and French.
Education has long been a Patrice’s passion of mine. She has been teaching since 2011. Additionally, she has over 15 years of experience in the performing arts, training with several groups in music, dance and drama. Over her teaching career, she had the opportunity of interacting with students of varying ages, backgrounds and cultures across different continents and regions, such as Europe, North America, Asia and the Caribbean.