Activities

Having fun on a rainy day!

You don’t always have to watch movies when it is raining outside. Although it can be a fun source of entertainment, it is best if used with moderation. There are tons of different indoor activities you can do with your children from a puppet show to homemade play dough. Look for games where children can decide what to do instead of giving them step-by-step instructions. The idea is to give them something to be inspired from.

Puppets

This activity is perfect for exploring your child’s imagination. Let them transform the sofa or the kitchen table into a castle, a boat, a spaceship or even in Hanna Montana’s performance stage! Role-playing with hand puppets develops your child’s cognitive, social and even physical abilities.

If you have enough space downstairs, why not create a kid’s corner with a stage and a set of curtains? This space will definitively invite them to use their creative, imaginative and artistic side.Your children can make up their own story or get inspired by a classic tale or even a TV show. Classic tales do have the advantage of presenting key ingredients such as: an easy to follow story, dialogues between good and bad characters and even a moral that helps to understand things about life. And, of course, the action scenes are always popular with the little ones!

Hand puppets are also quite easy to make. You can help your child make the hand puppets using their own inspiration and the material available at home (smart move if you want to double the time for this activity!). Another idea is to use stuffed animals and figurines that your children already own. If the neighbour joins in on the fun, it will be a creative way to discover new toys! Adults are not the only ones who believe that the grass is always greener…

Your kids will love making tickets and an official program for the puppet show, adding even more arts and crafts to the activity! Awesome, isn’t it?

Dimmed lighting will do the trick to create a theatre ambiance. You can also hand a flashlight to one of the kids and ask him to play the role of the lighting technician.

Moreover, you can recruit some of the other children for special effects: playing music, making special sound effects or playing the role of the presenter!

Homemade play dough

Another classic indoor activity is making homemade play dough. It is easy to prepare, even for kids and they will be so delighted to play with it knowing they made the dough themselves!

You can use this classic recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cups of flour (600 ml)
  • 1 cup of salt (250 ml)
  • 4 table spoons of vegetable oil (60 ml)
  • 1 cup of water (250 ml)
  • A few drops of food coloring

Preparation

Knead all the ingredients and that is it! Keep the dough in a plastic container or a Ziplock bag and store in the refrigerator.

Mural

Buy large sheets of cardboard and glue them together to make a giant mural. Brainstorm with your children on a theme you could use to decorate the cardboard. Your children can decorate, make a collage, cut out shapes from construction paper, etc. Once inspired by a theme, your children should be busy for quite some time and who knows, they might just help you decorate the basement!

Camping

A rainy day may discourage you from going outdoor camping, but what about indoors? Unfold the tent and install it inside the house! Even though it may become a little crowded, remind yourself that the hours of fun your children will have will compensate for the trouble of tidying everything up afterwards. Really go all the way with the theme by playing with a compass! A great way to end the day is with a night of storytelling around the “camp fire”.

A ton of game ideas!
The pirate’s treasure chest

Material:

  • Small envelopes or small containers with lids;
  • Natural “treasures”: stones, flowers, petals, sea shells, branches, etc.;
  • A sand pit;
  • A small shovel

Instructions

  • Make small packages in which you will hide a treasure. Hide them in the sand pit or inside the house.
  • Ask your little pirate to go search for the treasures.
  • Open the treasure chest with your little one and ask him to touch and manipulate the object. This could be a great way to teach your child about the fragility of certain objects.
Little Curious Hands

Material

  • An empty box of tissues
  • 6 objects: 2 sea shells, 2 pine cones, 2 stones

Instructions

  • Place a series of objects in the box. Keep the plastic lid to hide the objects.
  • Present the other objects to your child by placing them in front of him.
  • Talk about the characteristics of each object with your little one.
  • Let your child manipulate each object.
  • Next, ask him/her to find each object in the box only by touching them (he should not see them!).
Nature Bath

Material

  • Fine herbs or favourite scented flowers (rosemary, thyme, mint, rose, etc.)
  • A piece of fine tissue or a coffee filter

Instructions

  • Gather leaves, petals or flowers.
  • Place everything in a coffee filter or small sachet and close it.
  • Throw the sachet into the bath water and enjoy!
The Lost Leaf

Material

  • Leaves from different trees

Instructions

  • Present one leaf at a time to your child and ask him which tree has lost a leaf
A Sandy Dinosaur

Material

  • Fine and dry sand
  • Newspaper (to limit the mess!)
  • Construction paper or cardboard
  • Crayons
  • Glue

Instructions

  • Draw a landscape on the cardboard or construction paper.
  • Draw one or many dinosaurs on your scenery.
  • Ask your child to add glue onto the dinosaurs only.
  • Sprinkle sand onto the dinosaur drawings.
  • Blow softly onto the paper to remove the left over sand and drop it onto the newspaper.
The Potato Family

Material

  • Potatoes
  • Clothes pins
  • Glue
  • Nature objects (twigs, leaves, shells, grass, etc.)

Instructions

  • Choose regular size potatoes. Wash them and dry them well.
  • Cut a small part of a potato so it can stand on its own.
  • Decorate your potato by dressing him up with your “nature” objects. Use glue or baby pins to make your costume.
Leaves on Paper

Material

  • Tree leaves
  • Paint and paint brushes
  • Sheets of paper

Instructions

  • Collect different types of leaves with your child. Make sure to keep leafstalk.
  • Paint one of the leaves.
  • Place the painted leaf face down on the sheet of paper. Press delicately without moving the leaf.
  • Pull off the leaf and admire your work of art!
Life in miniature

Material

  • A magnifying glass
  • A rope

Instructions

  • Place the rope on the ground to trace a path
  • Ask your child to follow the rope on hands and knees with his magnifying glass and tell you what he sees.

 

Weatherman (or woman)

Material

  • A cardboard plate
  • Coloring crayons
  • A split pin (brass fastener)
  • Colour cardboard

Instructions

  • Separate the plate into four sections: cloud – sun – rain – storm. You can draw the images or make a collage to illustrate each section.
  • Cut out an arrow (to use as a clock’s hand), and place it in the center of your plate with the help of the split pin.
  • Hang your weather clock near a window on the bedroom or kitchen wall.
  • Every morning, ask your child to look out into the sky and place the arrow in the right section of the weather clock.
Tell me ! Tell me !

Material

  • Various natural elements.

Instructions

  • Suggest to your child different adjectives describing a tactile sensation (hard, soft, wet, dry, smooth, etc.) or an olfactory sensation (bitter, sweet, strong, etc.)
  • Next, ask your little one to describe the objects using the right adjective.
  • You can also go outdoors to look for the objects meeting the different descriptions.
Maracas

Material

  • Unused camera films or empty baby food containers (the containers should be opaque).
  • Mineral elements in diverse forms: dirt, sand, gravel, grains, rocks, etc.

Instruction

  • Prepare two small boxes, each containing the same elements, in order to ask your child to figure out which boxes make the same sound.
  • Present the boxes four at a time (two different sounds), six at a time, eight, etc.

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