Imagine waking up in the middle of summer. The sun is out and it’s beaming hot outside. Your family packs all the essentials for a beach day. As you walk outside, a single rain drop slides down your cheek. More rain falls, and you realize that the beach day you planned is cancelled.
Nothing is more disappointing than the rain ruining a family day out. New Englanders are used to irregular weather, but that doesn’t mean we should give up on having a fun time with the family!
Rainy days are actually the perfect time to get creative—there are plenty of ways to keep kids entertained indoors. Sometimes, popping in movies isn’t enough to stop kids from whining about how bored they are. You have to think outside the toy box.
Keep the little ones entertained for hours when rain showers with the suggestions below!
Arts and Crafts
Kids love art because it provides an outlet for them to express themselves. Parents love arts and crafts because it’s the perfect distraction (hopefully with minimal cleanup!). Here are some DIY projects you should try out the next time storm clouds ruin your summer plans.
1. New Family Recipe. Food always eases the pain that comes with boredom. Grab whatever is left in the fridge and invent a tasty new treat with the kids.
2. Make Your Own Playdough. It’s easy to make and only requires a few household ingredients. Get the exact recipe here!
3. Science Experiment. Combine education with fun and conduct a science experiment with household items. Educate your kids on why certain elements create a reaction.
4. Make DIY Moon Sand. The only ingredients for this fun activity are flour and baby oil.
5. Decorate the Windows. Rain puts us all in a down mood. Brighten up the house with fun rainbow decor. Here’s the exact steps for your kids to create Colorful Tissue Paper Butterflies for the windows.
6. Film and Direct a Family Video. Transform your home into a studio. This will encourage your kids to think about creative ways to make a funny tv show or movie. Kids say the darndest things. Why not get it on tape? Who knows, maybe it’ll become the newest viral video on the Internet. If not just share it on Facebook. Maybe you can even enter it into the 48-Hour Film Festival!
7. DIY Fidget Spinners. Move over Rubik’s cube. The fidget spinner is in town and it’s the newest toy favorite. You could buy them online but now they’re popular and more expensive. Learn to make your own with these instructions. Fidget spinners are actually used as sensory tools that help children with anxiety focus on something concrete, but everyone loves them.
8. Create a Rainy Day Basket. Next time you’re trapped inside with the kids, you’ll be covered. Pack anything from their favorite Disney movies, board games, coloring books, snacks, and more, and break it out the next time the raindrops start to fall.
9. Make Edible DIY Slime. Children love making things with their hands. This gooey, green slime is super stretchy and easy to make. It’ll keep them distracted for hours. Best part of it all is that it’s non-toxic and edible, so don’t worry about the mess!
10. Spa Day. Relax on a rainy day. Have everyone wear robes, bring out the nail polish, and try making DIY Dinosaur Bath Bombs to add a little extra fun to your spa experience.
11. Personalized Coloring Book. If your kids have already filled the pages of their old coloring books you can always make one with personalized family photos. Here are the steps to learn how to make your own coloring book.
12. Indoor Rainbows. Bring a rainbow to your children with rainbow soap foam bubbles. This project incorporates sensory play which helps children discover all of their senses at once. Maybe they’ll find a pot of gold in the bathtub!
13. Origami Boats. Help your children learn the art of folding paper and make a boat. Then find puddles outside to float them on.
14. Finger Paint Art Museum. Distract your children from the rain with painting on a cardboard easel. After they’re done with their masterpiece, set up an art museum in the living room.
15. Rain Stick Story Time. When I was in elementary school and recess was cancelled, my teacher would bring out her rain stick and use it to sing songs and tell stories. Rain Sticks are easy to make, and you’ll end with a unique instrument that’ll captivate any child.
Rainy days make us all feel a little more lazy than usual—even kids. But that doesn’t have to be true. Stay active with these indoor activities listed below!
16. Limbo Beach Party. Bring the beach to your doorstep! DIY a limbo stick out of pool noodles or a broom stick. Decorate with Hawaiian-themed decor, dance to tropical tunes, add beach balls, put on some bathing suits, and eat tropical snacks! It’s a vacation in your living room!
17. Scavenger Hunt. Curious kids love to find random things to play with. They’re still learning about the world and want to explore. Get creative and have your kids search for items around the house. Incorporate education with this number scavenger hunt.
18. Put on a Play. Let your kids wear old Halloween costumes and watch them put on a magical show for the family. You can even use cardboard boxes and paint to decorate a set with them. It’s a cute way for children to use their imagination and develop storytelling skills.
20. Indoor Obstacle Course. Design an obstacle course that challenges your children’s abilities but keep in mind the size of your house.
21. Bowling. All you need are empty bottles and a rolling ball. Set up a score sheet and divide your family into teams to make it more competitive!
22. Hide and Seek. It’s a classic game that everyone loves! I bet it can go on for hours too!
23. Freeze Dance Party. Be a DJ and play their favorite songs. When the music stops and someone doesn’t, they’re eliminated. Reward the last kid standing with a prize!
24. Exercise. Just because you can’t go outside doesn’t mean you can’t stay active. There are plenty of kid appropriate exercises online like this Frozen themed Yoga for Kids video.
25. DIY Swings. Depending on the size of your child, use a woven wrap and wrap it around a table or hook it in between the door way with these instructions. Let your child hang out while you are busy tidying up from the limbo party you just threw!
26. Build a Cardboard Castle. Every kid likes to feel like they’re King or Queen of the world. Build a magical kingdom out of cardboard and let them decorate it with paint. Watch this tutorial to learn how to build one.
27. Play Balloon Tennis. If you don’t own rackets, don’t worry! All you need are wooden sticks, tape, paper plates, and balloons.
28. Go Camping. You can still experience the outdoors without leaving the house. Pitch a tent in the living room, turn on some nature music, then roast some yummy s’mores in the oven.
29. Newspaper Fort. It’s not a rainy day if you don’t build the most epic fort in the living room. There’s no need to take apart the couch when you can build your fort out of old newspapers that are going to end up in the recycling bin anyway. Follow the instructions here and start building!
30. Indoor Playhouse. Use pool noodles to build an epic playhouse! Assemble it with duct tape, and bedroom sheets, follow these instructions here. Throw in some colorful balls to make ball pit!
There’s Always a Silver Lining to the Rain Clouds
Show kids how to make the most of any situation, rain or shine. From arts and crafts to indoor games, the weather can’t stop you from having fun with your family! Would you rather get the kids out of the house on a rainy day? Check out this list of 15 fun places to bring your kids on a rainy day!