Rainy day activities

Rainy days can have even the most hands-on parent begging for a break, but they need not be stress-filled or cabin-fevered! Don’t feel trapped by the rainy days – just follow our 10 easy tips for keeping the kids entertained and you’ll beat the rainy-day blues!

Create a rainy day box

It can be hard to think of the perfect activity when you’re suddenly trapped indoors, so keep a Rainy Day Box of fun, hands-on activities and crafts that are only brought out when the weather is grey. Your Rainy Day Box will need to be large, so you can keep it stocked with an assortment of fun stuff. Don’t forget to restock your Rainy Day Box when the weather clears up!

Here are some fun ideas for your box:

  • Cheap art and craft supplies.
  • New colouring and activity books.
  • Pencils, textas, crayons and chalk.
  • Old make-up and your latest wardrobe throwaways for costumes.
  • Jigsaw puzzles.
  • Old magazines and newspapers for papier-mâché or collages.
  • Left over party favours like balloons and decorations.
  • A deck of cards.
  • Family board games.

Have a jigsaw afternoon

Jigsaws are a whole-family activity that can be a wonderful bonding experience between differently-aged siblings and their busy parents. Set each member of the family up with a puzzle to suit their skill level, all helping each other finish, or create teams to work on puzzles together. You can even make your own family-photo jigsaws using an enlarged photo printed onto plain paper from your computer.

Indoor fortress fun

What child doesn’t love building a princess castle or a fortress indoors? Pick a room in the house that you don’t mind being rearranged for a few hours, and use sheets and blankets and lots of pegs or butterfly clips to secure them as a roof between tables, couches and chairs. Encourage your children to use their imaginations – they can create rooms inside with towels and other furniture, dress up and act out stories from their favourite books, and even have a picnic in the cubby for lunch. This activity is hours of entertainment for any age, and especially great fun when you have a friends over for a playdate.

Family movie day

Rather than watching the same old kids’ TV shows all day long, beat rainy day boredom with a fun family movie day. From making fun snacks like nacho popcorn and lolly gobble bliss bombs, to creating a cinema in your lounge room, this is a great way to keep kids of all ages entertained.

High Tea at home

Cooking with kids can be messy, but it’s also a whole lot of fun and a fantastic way to keep them entertained for a couple of hours. Get them busy helping to bake yummy treats for an afternoon High Tea, then set them up with their toys at a table or on a picnic rug. Make a deal with them – you’ll help them have a wonderful High Tea if they’ll help you clean up the dishes afterwards (this may include washing, wiping, putting away and a fair amount of bowl and spoon licking). This will teach them about compromise and responsibility – but don’t forget to keep it fun! Find some gorgeous recipe ideas for your High Tea at Kidspot Kitchen.

Scavenger hunt

A scavenger hunt is a great way to amuse kids large and small. You can hide treats, but if you’re health-conscious, hide toys instead – just use a specific set so they know what to look for, such as the Barbie collection, matchbox cars, or leftover party favours like balloons or toy whistles. Give each child a small basket to collect their loot in – they could have some fun decorating this for an extra activity. You could even let the kids create a deck of colourful picture cards to use as your scavenger pieces. To keep them engaged, offer a prize or treat for the child who brings back the most loot each round. This is a game that can be played for hours on end, with the right incentive!

Fashion show spring clean

Here’s a fun way to spring clean the childrens’ wardrobes – put on a fun fashion show! Place lamps in your hallway and pop some fun music on the stereo, then get your kids to strut their stuff down your makeshift catwalk. Cheer them on from your audience chair at the end of the hall, as you decide whether each item is ready for the rag-bag or op-shop, delegated to the hand-me-down or sewing baskets, or still fine to wear for another season. De-cluttering has never been so fun!

Story book fun

Create a fun memento of your rainy day by letting the kids make their own story books – this is a fun activity for any age. Simply staple some pages together and let the kids use their imaginations to decorate the front cover. They could use photos of your own family, friends and pets to make a family scrapbook. Old magazines are also great for sourcing colourful pictures to stick in your story book, or encourage them to draw their own pictures. Try giving the children some inspiration with a story theme – stick to simple themes like robots or fairies, or ask them to write a story about their favourite birthday party, holiday, family member or pet.

Have a rainy adventure

A walk in the rain is a fantastic thing – you get to beat cabin fever, wear out bored and cranky kids for a (hopefully) lazy afternoon, and get some much-needed fresh air at the same time. Dress up in gumboots, hats and raincoats, grab the umbrellas and go and discover the outside world in the rain! You could head to your favourite local park, take a walk around the block, or just explore your own backyard. Never mind if the children get a little wet from their puddle-jumping adventures, just pop them into a lovely warm bath afterwards – the perfect wind-down after a rainy adventure.

Toy attack

Sorting through a big, mixed mess of toys can be more fun than you think! Dedicate a few hours to making it an enjoyable activity with your kids by playing a series of fun games to get all the toys sorted into each child’s toy box. You may like to award points to the winner and runner-up of each game, with an overall reward or prize as added incentive. Plus, here’s a mum-secret – keeping it fast-paced will cut down on the urge all children have to stop and play. Ssshhh!

First, you need to place one empty basket or box per child in the middle of the room. Delegate each child to a box and get them to draw a picture of themselves and write their name on it – this will be their label for their personal toy box.

Games

  • GAME ONE: Give each child a mixed box or basket of toys to sort, with clear instructions to fill the empty boxes with the correct sibling’s toys. Now you can make it race to see who can empty their basket the quickest!
  • GAME TWO: Set them all loose on one basket of mixed toys, instructing them to fill the middle toy boxes until their mixed basket is empty. Now, count the toys in the middle and see whose box has the most toys.
  • GAME THREE: Place your labelled toy boxes in a straight line and show the children where they are. Then ask the children to sit around a basket of mixed toys, next to the labelled toy boxes. Blindfold one child at a time, instructing them to take one toy from the basket. They must guess who the toy belongs to – each correct guess gets one point. After they guess, reveal who the toy belongs to, and then the blindfolded child must find their way to the correct labelled toy box to put the toy away. The other children can call out directions to help!

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8 Comments

  1. Alezandra 03/11/2018 at 8:59 pm

    Ooh rainy day box is such a nifty idea. And I’m such a frustrated indoor fortress builder. I can never make a good one or I start something and halfway it doesn’t get built. I also like the toy attack as it also saves in organising the toys.

  2. SarahBlair 31/10/2018 at 2:06 pm

    There are some good ideas here, it’s so easy to fall into the ‘go and watch TV’ trap on rainy days. We also like to bake and get arty! My kids love to draw and colour in.

  3. dawnblyth 31/10/2018 at 11:39 am

    Sometimes we as parents dread wet inside days as the options can be limited on what to do with your children. Having these ideas up shows us there are things we can do inside – and not all these things cost money either which is handy. Here in Christchurch at some of the malls they often have holiday programmes going which cost nothing to take part in, and sometimes the children can get wee prizes – another way to fill in an hour or two.

  4. felicity beets 27/10/2018 at 1:40 pm

    Great ideas here. We also like music or dancing time with musical instruments and ribbons for dancing – great fun on a rainy day.

  5. MuddledUpMolly 23/10/2018 at 9:54 pm

    This is a great list of ideas, some of which may need to be utilised judging by this weekends upcoming weather forecast! We naturally do some of these already but it’s good to break the norm and try new ideas to keep our kids busy and happy 🙂

  6. Mands1980 18/10/2018 at 6:57 pm

    These are some great ideas we do some of these already but it’s always great to have other ideas when the kids say I’m bored. Last holidays we had sheets up over chairs and they made up beds under them planing to stay the night but they chickened out. Watching movies is great too. Making play dough as well as long as we have enough ingredients they love home made.

  7. Bevik1971 15/10/2018 at 1:28 pm

    There are lots to do on rainy days – we try and limit screen time, be it TV or the tablet. We have actually restricted tablet time for our nearly 6 year old to maybe an hour a day, sometimes not at all. She is into the game Trouble and Pass the Pigs at the moment, we also play cards. She is more than happy to play on her on at times and we also play with her dolls and My Little Pony playset with ponies making up fantastical stories and movies haha, it’s actually a lot of fun 🙂

  8. kymmage 12/10/2018 at 8:41 pm

    What a great list of ideas. We do movie nights all the time. I love to cosy into a duvet or blanket, pop some corn and watch something as a family. The fashion show idea is great. We need to declutter clothing here and there’s no easy way to do it. But what a great idea to turn it into a game.

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