Kids home from school? Travel plans cancelled? Keep everyone sane while staying home with these fun boredom busters and indoor activities for families!
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This week will go down in history as being one of the craziest ones most of us have ever experienced. NBA postposed. March Madness cancelled. All the Disney Parks closed.
And tons of school closings around the country. I know my son’s school personally has already cancelled school for tomorrow and then they have spring break next week. Not sure whether they’ll go back after right away or not.
It’s still up in the air how it all plays out but one thing is clear – people are taking the whole social distancing thing seriously.
As they should.
That being said – there are going to be a lot of people home in the next month including kids who normally would be at school all day.
It’s so easy to immediately turn to screens – movies, video games, computers, and tablets – but one of my goals is to limit the amount of screen time as much as possible and avoid going stir crazy at the same time.
While other people are stockpiling toilet paper and hand sanitizer, I’ve been stock piling things to do with my kiddos while they’re out of school.
I sent this list out to my email list (subscribe here to get future list) today and had such great feedback from people that I decided to make it a blog post as well – with a few more ideas than in the original email!
So here you go. Boredom busters to keep from going stir and screen crazy over the next month or two!
Most of these things are easily doable with things you have around your house and if not, so far I know Amazon is still delivering!
Boredom Busters for When You’re Stuck At Home
1 – Play board games.
If you’ve ever seen my collection, you know I’m a huge board game addict. Play your favorite board games or order a few new ones to play instead. These are some of our favorite games for groups and these are my personal favorite games for teens and adults!
2 – Have a minute to win it tournament.
I’ve got over 200 different minute to win it games here, many of which you can play using things from around your house! But maybe skip the toilet paper games for now.
3 – Read a book or three.
If you have a Kindle, these are some of my favorite Kindle Unlimited books you can download right now. If you don’t, try one of these books you can still order on Amazon or pick up while you’re making a last-minute Target run.
Have kids at home? Read a book then try one of these fun reading related activities to go along with it.
4 – Have an indoor campout.
5 – Get outdoors.
You don’t have to go far to have fun. Try one of these outdoor games in your own backyard to get some of that energy out without the risk of germs of public places. If it’s warm enough, these water games are great too!
Don’t want to go outside? Play them inside in the largest room in your house instead!
6 – Host an indoor Olympics.
Host your very own Olympics complete with homemade medals (think yogurt lids + string like in The Office) and Olympic ring donuts. Here are some Winter Olympic inspired games and summer Olympic game ideas to get you started!
7 – Go on a scavenger hunt.
Either use one of these scavenger hunt ideas or make up your own. Write down a bunch of things you might find around the house, put them in a hat, and pull them out. Add a time limit and see if you can find the item before the time runs out.
Or make it even more fun and do a virtual scavenger hunt with friends and family via Zoom, Google Hangout, or Skype!
8 – Have a letter or color themed day.
Pick a letter and only do activities that start with that letter kind of like we did with these Y activities. You could do the same thing with a color – play only blue games, eat only blue foods, and color pictures with only shades of blue. There’s just something exciting about seeing how much you can do within a theme.
If you need ideas for getting started, here’s an entire post with a family activity idea for every letter of the alphabet!
9 – Play party games.
Just because you’re stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t still celebrate! With St. Patrick’s Day and Easter right around the corner, there are plenty of fun ways to celebrate that you can do right in your very own home. Print out this roll a rainbow game, play these St. Patrick’s Day games (or these Easter games), or even decorate Easter eggs a little early.
10 – Keep learning.
Just because kids are out of school doesn’t mean the learning needs to stop. Try one of these fun spelling games, play one of these educational board games for kids, play a limited number of educational computer or tablet games, or get creative with things like these letter mat games (you could do with any letters in your house).
Don’t force learning on the kids but make it fun and hopefully there won’t be a huge issue when they return to school! I just ordered one of these Brain Quest Workbooks for my 1st grader that’s full of fun and educational activities.
11 – Try one of these boredom bucket list items.
If all else fails, pick out one of the items on my family’s boredom bucket list below and do it. I’ve written these down and put them on popsicle sticks – when my kiddo gets bored, he picks out and we do it. I also added in things like chores but you can skip those. We made it as a way for him to stop saying I’m bored because sometimes when he picks a stick, he has to do something he doesn’t necessarily like.
Here’s what’s on our list!
- Read a book.
- Play a board game.
- Do a science experiment.
- Play charades. (Here are some great St. Patrick’s Day charades words)
- Play i-Spy.
- Clean up/organize a space.
- Setup an obstacle course.
- Do an activity book.
- Build something with Legos.
- Create a zoo with stuffed animals.
- Play with Play-Dough (homemade or store-bought).
- Do a load of dishes or laundry and time yourself!
- Make and play with slime.
- Run a lap around the neighborhood.
- Play an active game like Just Dance or Wii Sports.
- Bake something together. These St. Patrick’s Day cupcakes, these mini calzones, and these monster cookie sandwiches are always a hit with kids.
- Ask each other silly questions or something like these Earth Day quiz questions.
- Write and send someone a card or surprise.
- Color. These Star Wars coloring pages are my kiddo’s favorite.
- Play a kids version of Truth or Dare with these Truth or Dare questions.
- Make up jokes.
- Have a picnic with playtime placemats like these back to school ones and these number game ones.
- Watch a movie and do an activity inspired by the movie like these Cars games and this Disney trivia board game.
- Have a flip a coin day kind of like we did with this flip a coin activity. Choose two choices – flip a coin and let the coin choose what you do.
- Have your very own dinosaur dig. Pour sand or rice into a big bucket along with small toys and create your very own architectural dig.
- Do an art project.
- Play one of these fun math games or relay races with math flashcards.
- Make up a silly story together.
- Play or practice a sport.
- Dance party.
- Build a fort.
- Go on a walk or a bike ride. Even better if you do this fun wacky walk!
- Act out your favorite movie – even better if you do it in slow mo or fast forward.
- Learn or try something new.
- Paint something.
And if you are celebrating a birthday, these birthday party ideas at home are perfect for making birthdays at home special!