20 indoor activities for kids

20 indoor activities for kids when you’re on Coronavirus lockdown

20 indoor activities for kids

It’s a a worrying time at the moment, with Coronavirus spreading and world leaders recommending social distancing and self isolation. If Australia follows the lead of many other countries then schools will be closed and we may all be instructed to self isolate for at least 14 days to stop the spread.

No, I don’t know about you but my biggest fear is 14 days housebound with kids! No play dates, no activities, just me trying to work from home and a bored kid. We are all going to be in the same boat so here are 20 indoor activities for kids when you’re on Coronavirus lockdown. Some of the activities are hands on, and others the kids can do on their own (so you can get some peace and quiet!)

I’ve ranked these out of 5 for:

Effort

Parental Involvement

Likelihood of peace and quiet

 

Contents

20 indoor activities for kids when you’re on Coronavirus lockdown

1 Baking

Baking is my go to when I’m at home with Tully. We like baking cakes and biscuits primarily. She loves these the most because she can decorate them as well (which is her favourite part). Sometimes we bake together then I set her up with icing and decorations and she spends ages decorating them on her own.

If you aren’t a big baker, just grab a packet mix from the supermarket. You’ll just need eggs, butter and milk usually to go with it.

For decorating I make a basic butter cream recipe but if you are using a cake mix they come with icing too. Or just buy a tub of the Betty Crocker stuff from the supermarket. Then get some small lollies and sprinkles and let them go for it.

We recently went to the next level and used royal icing, which was so much fun.

Effort: 4

Parental Involvement: 5

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 2 (at the end)

2 Have a Lego building contest

Need some time to yourself? Give the kids an hour and a box of Lego and tell them to start creating. Create a prize for the winner (like picking the next family movie) and have them get to work.

Note: If you think that there will be tears come up with a few categories of winners so that no one misses out. The most important thing is setting that one hour timer so you can get stuff done!

Effort: 0

Parental Involvement: 1

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 5

 

3 Set up an indoor obstacle course (or outdoor if you have a garden!)

Yes, this is messy; yes, it will probably be loud, but it’s a great way to get the kids moving if you don’t have a back yard. If you set it up they will play there all day and you can hide in a bedroom to get some work done.

Effort: 4

Parental Involvement: 1

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 4

4 Board Games

Board games

Get out the board games! They aren’t my favourite things to do but the kids love them. If you have ones that are age appropriate they should be able to play them without you. Some of Tully’s favourites are Top Trumps Match Cube Game, Top Trumps, Connect 4, Guess Who, Mouse Trap and Game of Life.

As an extra activity, get them to create their own!

Effort: 2

Parental Involvement: 2-3

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 3

 

5 Play Dough

Making your own play dough will have the kids happy for ages. I like to make it in the Thermomix, using their recipe, but Here is an easy recipe for you to make with just a saucepan.

Ingredients

1/2 cup salt

1 cup plain flour

2 tbs cream of tartar

1 cup water

1 tbs oil

3 drops liquid food colouring

Method

Mix all of the ingredients except food colouring together in a medium-sized saucepan on medium heat

Stir over heat until dough is pliable and doughy

Allow to cool a bit, then divide into portions and kneed colours into each portion.

Store in a well-sealed plastic bag or container in the fridge

Effort: 3

Parental Involvement: 1

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 4

 

6 Tie Dye or Draw on clothes

If the kids are a bit bigger then tie dying clothes is a great way to entertain them. My friends and I used to do this for hours in late primary school and early high. You can buy tie dying kids online or at places like Spotlight or Lincraft and super cheap white clothes from Kmart.

If you don’t want the mess of tie dye then buy some white tops and some fabric markers from Spotlight or other craft shops and let them go to town creating their own clothes.

Effort: 2

Parental Involvement: 3 for tie dye and 1 for drawing

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 3.5

 

7 Build Cubby Houses

 

Yes, once again, this is a messy one, but it will keep them occupied for ages. Hand them over the living room or family room, give them all the cushions and blankets you can find and let them build cubby houses. Tully and her cousins spent hours doing this the other day at my mother’s place. It was great!

Effort: 0

Parental Involvement: 1

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 4

8 DIY Science Experiments

There are so many fun science experiments  the kids can do at home. They can make slime, which is so fun. All you need is a few ingredients. Here’s a great, and easy, recipe for you:

Ingredients

250 ml white craft glue (get good quality like Mont Marte – the cheap stuff doesn’t work)

1 1/2 – 2 tablespoons of saline contact solution (you can get this at any Chemist) – add more if needed.

1 tablespoon bi carb of soda

Method

Pour glue and food colouring into a bowl and stir until combine.

Add baking soda and mix again.

Mix in saline solution. Add 1 1/2 Tablespoons saline solution and mix until combined

If it’s too sticky, add 1/2 Tablespoon more solution at a time. The more you add, the thicker it’ll be. The less you add, the slimier it will be.

Knead the slime. Using your hands, knead the slime until it holds together. It will be wet and gooey at first, but just keep kneading until it all comes together.

Store slime. Store slime in a container with lid, or in a zip top bag. The slime is best to play with on a place mat.

You can also add glitter if you like!

For a whole list of experiments you can do at home check out Science Bob

Effort: 4

Parental Involvement: 3

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 2 (at the end)

9 Teach the kids to cook

20 indoor activities for kids when you're on Coronavirus lockdown

Being stuck at home is a great time to teach the kids some life skills. So how about teaching them to cook! You can start off with easy ideas, like making pizzas, learning to cook pasta, toasted sandwiches, and other easy dinners. After all, we may as well make the kids useful!

Effort: 5

Parental Involvement: 5

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 0

 

10 Movie Day

This is the ultimate activity if you’re on deadline at home. Yes it’s a lot of screen time, but sometimes it just has to be done. Set up a bed on the floor of the lounge or family room, pile it with cushions and blankets. Pop some popcorn, get some bowls of snacks and let them watch a bunch of movies.

Effort: 0

Parental Involvement: 1

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 5

 

11 Put on a play or dance

If you have more than one kid at home then getting them to put on a play or dance will get you a few hours of peace. Have them go and rehearse, organise costumes and so on. They can show you at the end. In the meantime, hopefully you got an hour or two of uninterrupted work done.

Effort: 0

Parental Involvement: 1

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 4-5

 

12 Get some Walkie Talkies

You can get these super cheap and they will entertain the kids for hours! They can be upstairs, downstairs, outside and they will feel like spies, while you get some time to yourself. You can extend the game by setting up a big scavenger hunt to go with it – it just depends on how motivated you are feeling!

Effort: 1 – 4

Parental Involvement: 2

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 4

13 Nerf Gun Wars

If you have a house full of boisterous kids and need to burn some energy then send them outside with the Nerf Guns for the ultimate battle. Set up bases and forts in the garden (or use your obstacle course) and get them to battle it out for the ultimate glory.

Effort: 2

Parental Involvement: 2

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 3.5 -4

14 Drawing and Colouring

This is Tully’s favourite activity. She alternates between drawing her own things and printing colouring pages of her favourite toys and movies of the internet. It gives me the most peace and quiet if she’s not in a need mood and she loves creating her own characters. It’s high on the imagination and creativity side and low on the work needed from . you.

Effort: 1

Parental Involvement: 1

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 5

 

15 A game of shop/library/ schools

Get them playing a good game and they can be happy for hours (as long as a fight doesn’t break out!). Some of the favourites here are shops, library or schools. Tully likes the beanie boos to be the students, we cut up little bits of paper for their work books and she and her friend can play this for hours.

If you have a million Little Shop toys lying about after that craze then set up a shop! The kids will love buying and selling.

Effort: 3

Parental Involvement: 3

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 3-4

 

16 Have a home read-a-thon

Get the kids reading with a home Read-a-thon. Set them up a chart each and challenge them to read a certain number of chapters a day. To really get them enthusiastic set up a chart for them. Here’s a downloadable one for you. Then you can even do prizes or rewards.

Home Readathon Challenge

Effort: 1

Parental Involvement: 1

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 5

 

17 stick them in the bath

Seriously – the easiest thing to do and maximum fun. If your kids are old enough to be unsupervised in the bath then chuck them in the tub with a bunch of toys and leave them to it. I don’t know about you but I find kids will happily spend hours in the bath. Add bonus if you give them goggles and snorkels too.

Effort: 0

Parental Involvement: 0

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 5

 

18 Download Audible or BorrowBox

If the kids aren’t old enough to read on their own yet, then Borrow Box or Audible are just what you need. Tully will listen to Harry Potter for HOURS with the ipad and headhones. I find it can replace me for a while. She will listen to Harry Potter while drawing or playing and she will leave me alone for longer.

Some of her favourites are:

Harry Potter

Roald Dahl

Enid Blyton

The Tree House Books

Effort: 0

Parental Involvement: 0

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 5

19 Educational iPad games

20 indoor activities for kids when you're on Coronavirus lockdown

Sometimes you just need to put them in front of a screen to get things done. So if you’re getting out the iPad check out games like Minecraft or educational apps like Reading Eggs. Tully also really likes Osmo (which you have to buy separately) but it has lots of STEAM games, as well as drawing and other activities.

Effort: 0

Parental Involvement: 0

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 5

 

20 Hide and Seek

Any good parent knows that hide and seek is THE game for 10 minutes to yourself. Get the kids to hide then have a coffee and shout out occasionally, “are they under here? What about over here?” – it should get you quite some time if they are competitive!

Effort: 0

Parental Involvement: 2

Likelihood of peace and quiet: 5

 

I hope you enjoyed our 20 indoor activities for kids when you’re on Coronavirus lockdown. If you have some other ideas please share them below to help save everyone’s sanity!

4 thoughts on “20 indoor activities for kids when you’re on Coronavirus lockdown

  1. Isher Lily Kaur Villaschi

    Really helpful but what can you do in smaller house spaces and what board games are suggested dor family fun and no fighting.

    Reply
    1. mmMaraya Post author

      Board games we love are:

      Game of Life
      Uno
      card games like snap, fish, memory
      Mouse Trap
      Cluedo
      Top Trumps

      In a small house it can definitely be hard but what about things like a cubby under the table, or on the bottom bunk? You can still do movies, or how about painting your windows with washable paints? That doesn’t need any space and the kids will love it!

      Reply

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