7 Fun Activities When You’re Stuck Inside
By Mary Ann Blair
Summer is a magical time for kids – swimming at the pool, digging in the dirt, running through sprinklers, collecting bugs, playing at the park – outdoor activities abound during this time of year. Unfortunately, sometimes the weather wreaks havoc on outdoor plans, and parents are forced to move the fun inside. Here are seven indoor activities you can do with your kids when spending time outside isn’t an option.
Plan a treasure hunt
In this activity that kids of all ages love, each clue leads to the next until the final clue leads to the “treasure”. The number of clues and difficulty level can be tailored for a variety of ages. The final clue can lead to a special snack or a game you love to play together. You can help each child create a treasure hunt for their sibling, or have older children create treasure hunts for each other.
Construct an indoor roadway
It’s so fun to drive cars and trucks on sidewalks and over piles of dirt. However, if the weather isn’t allowing outside time, an open space in a kitchen, dining room, or entryway can serve as the perfect spot to create a new roadway for little drivers. Just grab a roll of masking tape and lay down tape “roads” that span out in different directions. Add wooden blocks to build cities next to the roads.
Design a yarn maze
Start at the front door and wind yarn all around the house. Under furniture, up the steps, around the legs of the chairs – be creative! Little ones will delight in following this maze to see where it takes them or having to crawl through without touching the yarn. Place a small treasure or treat at the end for a fun surprise. Older siblings can easily take the lead on this activity.
Create an indoor sidewalk
Drawing on sidewalks with chalk is a great way for budding artists to express their creativity, but butcher paper and crayons or markers can serve as a perfect substitute. Roll a long stretch of paper across your dining room table or floor and tape down the edges. The width of this type of paper provides an oversized canvas to create a one-of-a-kind masterpiece. (This can also be a fun way to create a unique table runner for holiday meals throughout the year.)
Make homemade ice cream
This sounds more complicated than it actually is. You don’t need an expensive ice cream maker to tackle this project. You just need a few simple ingredients and some Ziploc bags. Do a quick web search of “ice cream in a bag” to find several easy recipes. What a great way to keep cool when it’s too hot to be outside!
Do a holiday-themed activity
Dig out the plastic Easter eggs and have an indoor egg hunt. Instead of candy, fill the eggs with small toys that have been buried on the bottom of the toy box. Have a costume parade with stored Halloween costumes. Wrap a few favorite toys in holiday paper and play a game of twenty questions to guess what’s inside the package. Make heart-shaped sugar cookies. Pick a holiday and see what other ideas your kids can come up with.
“Camp” in the living room
Pull out the sleeping bags. Have your children draw a picture of a campfire, and tape it to an empty wall. Make s’mores in the microwave, sit around the “campfire”, and read books or tell stories. If you can set up a small tent, this makes the experience even more enjoyable for kids.
Don’t let the weather forecast dampen your spirits. There are still plenty of fun things to do inside until the next perfect summer day arrives!
Mary Ann Blair is a mom of two boisterous boys. Besides chronicling her adventures in motherhood at miraclesinthemess.com, she loves the outdoors, reading, and all things crafty.