When your kids are stuck inside or home from school, it can be really easy to let them play videogames, watch movies, or surf the internet to their heart’s content. Too much screen time can get a little boring (and we all know how important it is that kids play outside), so today we’ve come up with some different activities for the whole family to do together while we’re all stuck at home.
Discover a New Hobby Together
We could all use a new hobby right now, something to keep us grounded and focused while the world’s gone crazy. Why not take this unique opportunity to learn a new hobby with your kids? Take out your cookbook (or find a kid-friendly recipe online), throw on an apron, and get cooking with your kids. Try teaching them to paint with watercolors as a fun twist on arts and crafts time. Or, if you have a skill like woodworking or sewing that your kids are interested in learning more about, try teaching them the basics. Now’s a great time to encourage their interests, find a new hobby you can do together, or just pass on a handy life skill.
Get a Global Perspective
More than half the world’s households now speak two (or more) languages at home. If your house isn’t one of them, now’s a great opportunity for your family to start learning a new language (which has tons of benefits, no matter which language you choose) together. The folks at Duolingo have put together an amazing way to learn over 25 different languages all through one site (they even have a mobile app!). You and your kids can play a game and learn to do things like count to ten, sing the ‘ABC Song,’ or learn the names of animals in different languages. Try learning the same concepts in different languages and see which languages your kids take to. Do they notice how different languages can have similar words and sounds? There’s so much fun experimenting your family can do with language!
Go Back to the Basics
Sometimes going low-tech can be a much-needed change of scenery from a world that’s dominated by phones, tablets, and laptops. Print out some paper dolls, paper airplanes, origami figures, or (other printable props) for your kids and see what their imaginations come up with. If your kids need a little more structure (feels like we all need a little more structure right now), have them add some story to their play by making it a diorama or filming a stop-motion video! Give your kids just a few toys to use as props or bits of inspiration and then set them free to create!
We’re all still figuring out this stuck at home thing, but birthdays, anniversaries, and other celebrations are still happening. If your kids have friends, relatives, or other loved ones with birthdays coming up, why not turn gift giving into an activity? It’s so easy to purchase something online, but what if you encouraged your kids to draw a picture, make a bracelet from scratch, or create a card using craft supplies from around the house instead? Your kids are sure to be proud of their creation, and their loved one will definitely appreciate the thought and effort that went into it. Even if there aren’t birthdays coming up, make some ‘Stay Healthy!,’ ‘Wash Your Hands,’ or ‘Get Well Soon!’ cards to send out too.
It’s surprising how much (and how quickly) being stuck at home makes us miss our family and friends. Your kids are certainly feeling the same way, so arrange for them to see and talk to their grandparents, friends, relatives, or other loved ones whenever they can. It might not be as good as seeing them in person, but it’s a great way to encourage your kids to stay social and escape feeling like the world stops at the front door for a little while. Video chats are the perfect way to connect with faraway friends, family, and loved ones who we don’t connect with often enough.
It’s time to update your home for all day activity, play, and anything else your family needs to do for a little while. Now that we’re spending all day, every day in and around our houses, you’re going to start to notice that one wall that’s bare of art or how the playroom floorplan isn’t set up well for Cozy Coupe races. So rearrange your playroom furniture, organize everyone’s closet, hang things on the wall, or do whatever needs to be done with your kids. You never know what forgotten toy, cherished photograph, or other treasure you’ll uncover while you’re at it.
Put on a Play
A great way to get your kids to explore (without actually leaving the house) is through their imaginations. Stretch your kids’ imaginations, creativity, and craftiness by putting on a play from start to finish. Work together to write the play (or, if we’re being realistic, at least a rough idea of what the play is), design a set out of cardboard boxes and other items from around the house, put together costumes, and then put on the show! If you have a video camera at home, make sure you record it so you can share it with your family members. Who knows, it might turn into a priceless family memory or even a new tradition!
If your family is enjoying these or any other fun activities while you’re stuck at home, we’d love to hear about them. Make sure to snap pictures as your family plays together, and don’t forget to tag us when you post (@OfficialLittleTikes on Instagram, @LittleTikes everywhere else on social media)!
At Little Tikes, we don’t just make toys, we make play. Looking for more great active play ideas? Check out www.LittleTikes.com for all our latest play tips and tricks!