Few things are better for kids than warm, sunny days spent playing outside. Unfortunately, the weather doesn’t always cooperate and kiddos end up stuck indoors. Instead of letting your son or daughter spend the entire day glued to a video game, tablet or any other screen, why not make it an arts and crafts day? Doing crafts is a fun way to pass the time, and it allows your child to express themselves. Plus, it can help them build valuable skills. Crafting encourages creativity, interaction and problem solving, and it helps take kids’ minds off the challenges of their daily lives.
There are all sorts of fun things to do inside on a rainy day. Instead of letting dark clouds and raindrops ruin your child’s day, let them have fun by working on one (or more!) of the following crafts.
Diamond painting is the ultimate rainy day activity for kids of all ages. The shimmering diamond drills included in a diamond art kit can brighten up even the dreariest of days, and it’s incredible just how fast time flies by when working on a project.
While you might think of diamond painting as more of an adult craft, it’s great for kids, too. There are designs to suit any child’s preferences, from unicorns and dragons to cartoon characters and superheroes. And when you choose a partial drill kit rather than a full drill kit, diamond painting is easy and enjoyable even for young children.
Rainbow Sensory Play
Sensory play is lots of fun for small kids, and there is nothing quite like a rainbow for making rainy days seem a bit brighter. Engage your little one in some rainbow sensory play by dyeing cooked spaghetti in rainbow colors and using them for play.
Cook the spaghetti and let cool completely. Divide the cooked pasta into zippered plastic bags. The number you need depends on the number of colors you have. Then, add a few drops of food coloring or non-toxic liquid watercolors to each bag. If you use food coloring, keep in mind that it could stain your child’s hands — and anything else the dyed noodles touch. Seal up the bags and shake until the noodles are colored. Pour the colored spaghetti into a plastic container and let your child have a blast squishing and swirling it around.
Making Balloon-Powered Toy Cars
Making balloon-powered toy cars is a fantastic craft for kids who love science. These simple cars are loaded with engineering and physics concepts, but they’re also super fun to play with and make. It’s super easy, too, and you can do it using scraps you probably already have lying around the house.
The materials you’ll need include:
- Empty plastic bottle
- Four plastic bottle caps
- Two straws
- Wooden skewer
Check out the full tutorial from Scientific American to learn how to make these fun cars with your child.
Getting Active with a Physical Activity Cube
When your kid can’t spend the day running and playing outside, they still need to get some exercise to burn off all their excess energy. Making a physical activity cube is a fun rainy day craft that will help your kids stay busy and physically active even when stuck indoors.
Cut white cardstock into six squares of equal size. Six inches by six inches works great. Then, write an activity on one side of each square. Tape the squares together using clear packing tape to form a cube. To give the cube a bit more stability, stuff some crumpled newspaper or bubble wrap inside before attaching the last square.
Not sure what activities to include? Here are a few options:
- Hop on one foot
- Jump up and down five times
- Flap your arms like a bird
- Do a dance
- Spin in a circle
- Run from one side of the house to the other
- Do five jumping jacks
If your kids are older, you can swap these simple activities out for things like doing push-ups, taking a 10-minute yoga break or taking a few trips up and down the stairs. The next time your child starts saying they’re bored, have them roll the dice and follow the instructions.
Transforming Old Toys into Something Amazing
Do your kids have old or broken toys that they never play with anymore? Why not transform them into something new? Upcycling old toys is a great project for a rainy day, and it teaches kids the importance of recycling and reusing rather than just throwing things away and buying new ones.
Upcycling old toys is easy, and it’s a cool way to bond with your child. Together, you can make toys they no longer use into everything from bookends to bow holders. There is no limit to the possibilities! Check out the Kids Activities blog for a few awesome ideas!
Creating a Board Game
Playing board games is a classic way to pass the time when the weather isn’t nice enough for outside play. After a while, though, even once-loved games become boring. When that happens, creating a family board game is a great solution.
Helping your child make their very own board game teaches them about design, logic and strategy while allowing them to express their creativity. Whether they make their own version of a classic game or come up with something totally unique, you may be surprised at just how much imagination they put into creating the perfect game.
Making Kinetic Sand
With kinetic sand, your kids can have fun playing with sand even when they’re stuck inside. Unlike play dough, kinetic has a fun texture. And because it sticks together, it feels a lot like playing in wet sand at the beach. Store-bought kinetic sand is always an option, but why not try making your own instead? The recipe is simple, and your kids will have a blast making and playing with DIY kinetic sand.