Is your child bored? Maybe the forecast calls for thunderstorms and they can’t get out to play. The hot temperatures of summer may also leave your children with a hum-drum type of day. But let’s spice things up. Get your child off the couch and away from the television. Put away their video game and look no further than simple items in your house to have some fun.
The first way to have fun is to play laundry basket skee ball. For this game you’ll need at least three laundry baskets and a make-shift ramp to roll the balls back to you. One laundry basket holds all the balls you’ll be tossing. The other two laundry baskets are assigned point values. For instance, laundry basket one may be 50 points and laundry basket two may be a hundred points. If you have older children, include a third laundry basket for 150 points. Decide how many points it takes to win and what the prize is for the winner. Maybe the winner gets out of mowing the lawn for a week or they get to pass off a chore to a sibling. Make it fun so they will want to play.
Balloon tennis is another fun game to play indoors. You only need three items for this game: balloons, paper plates and popsicle sticks. Attach the popsicle sticks to the paper plates either by glue or tape. After you have blown up the balloons, it’s time for the game to begin. If you have enough people, play this game in teams. Try to get have at least two people per teams, such as parents against kids. Assign points and penalty points to make the game fairer. It may be 1 penalty point if the balloon hits the floor, for instance, and 2 penalty points if it hits a piece of furniture. Don’t forget to decide on a total number of points you want to play to before the game ends. This is a great way to get your children up and moving around if they have had a day without much exercise.
If your child is around the pre-k age, you may consider creating a sensory bin. Children this age are starting to explore the world around them. Use sand, rice or even corn kernels to fill a small container. Then fill it with items that fit into a specific theme. The theme may be animals or items that a child would find on a farm. As the child pulls each item out, name that item. For instance, if your child pulls out a toy dog from the sensory bin, say “Dog. Can you say dog, too?” This reinforces the fact that learning is positive and they will want to do it when they see your approval.
Paper plate tic tac toe is also a fun way to keep little ones occupied. This game is simple and requires few supplies. All you have to do is make a tic tac toe board on the floor, either with masking tape or whatever you have on hand. Then take ten paper plates from the cupboard. On five of them, write O’s. On the remaining five, write X’s. It might be beneficial to write each set in a different color. That way they stand out while your children are playing the game. This is all that your children need to have hours of fun. You’ll be able to get your stuff done without them being under your feet, which is always a nice opportunity.
Finally, create an indoor hopscotch. This is easily created by putting painter’s tape on the floor. Use colorful cardboard stock or construction paper to make each number pop out for your child. Then, let your child get on with their playful spirit. Make it appear as a normal hopscotch would. This means box one is by itself, while box two and three are side-by-side. It continues this pattern until you get to ten or however large you want the hopscotch. Your child will be getting exercise and that’ll be the positive of the day.
So don’t let rain and miserable weather bum you out. You can have fun inside without putting too much money into it. Your children will be happy and so will you because they are not tracking in muddy shoes!