Here are lots of things to do at home with kids during the current Covid-19 situation that are fun and creative for the whole family!
Every child I know is home from school for the next few weeks and possibly longer, with various levels of quarantine or “shelter at home” restrictions as well. And instead of the usual vacation plans, summer camps, or playdates that many of us have when we’re off school, we’re home with fear, at-home learning packets, and stockpiles of toilet paper.
Our first priority is keeping our families safe and healthy, of course. (Here’s a great article on Covid-19 family safety, including how to talk to kids about the Coronavirus AND a recipe for homemade hand sanitizer.)
But I’d also like to help kids and parents get through this unprecedented situation with as much FUN and CREATIVITY as possible.
10 Fun & Creative Things to do at Home with Kids
These are family activities that you can do right now with your family, while you are stuck at home during the coronavirus situation (or anytime you’re looking for some extra ideas and activities). Bookmark or pin this post if you’d like to come back to it again for ideas.
1. Do art activities, of course!
There are so many super awesome ones that are fun, open-ended, and creative that you can do with the kids at home right now with materials you probably already have around the house. But if you want to order art supplies online, I have an Amazon storefront with my favorite recommended kids art materials. Here are some kids art activity ideas to get you started:
- Raised salt painting
- Body tracing art
- Shaving cream marbling
- 50+ Toddler Art Ideas
- Our Top 10 All-Time Favorite Art Activities for Kids
Want even more kids’ art ideas?
Try the KIDS ART SPOT for FREE
You can also join the KIDS ART SPOT for a more curated kids art experience. My online art club for kids and families is filled with video art lessons, printables, and drawing prompts to keep your children having fun, engaged, and learning through art. Plus, we are running an at-home ART CAMP as a free bonus inside the Art Spot.
And I am offering a FREE trial of the KIDS ART SPOT for the first time ever. Plus! I’ve just lowered the after-trial price to $7.99/month for now (half off the usual price)*, to make it available to all families, no matter your budget.
*Note: This is a temporary price change due to the current coronavirus situation, but anyone who signs up at this price will be able to keep it as long as they are a member. And, if that’s still outside of your budget, contact us as at [email protected] and we’ll help you out.
2. Try a simple science experiment.
Or do one a day! Kitchen science is the best and much of it is super simple, yet super fun for kids and families. And it’s definitely one of the best things you can do at home with kids! Some ideas to get you started:
- The Awesome Rainbow Milk Science Experiment
- Do the Amazingly Beautiful Ice Melting Experiment
- Try the Rainbow Skittles Experiment (or go crazy with variations on this art + science activity as we did!)
- Make some slime (a fun experiment in itself) then use it for slime faces and other creations
Want more science ideas? Check out The Best Kids Science Experiments to Try at Home
3. Start a daily gratitude practice.
Start a daily gratitude practice as a family, whether at the dinner table or before bed. Take turns talking about what you’re grateful for right now in your life or in the world.
When you are full of gratitude, there is no room for fear.
Use this Thankful Heart gratitude activity and printable over at Let’s Lasso the Moon.
Or consider making a spring version of this thankful bunting.
4. Build a LEGO city together.
Take over the living room or a big table to construct and play with an elaborate play scene made out of LEGO, building blocks, Playmobile, magnet tiles, or whatever your favorite open-ended toys are.
A homemade play mat might make a good base for this play + construction extravaganza!
Or, take the idea outside, and make roads, rivers, and hills out of dirt, sand, water, sticks, and rocks.
5. Play games!
Play games together as a family! We’ve been playing lots of games, including Qwirkle and Monopoly Deal, two of our favorites. Here are more ideas for board games, card games, and art games:
- The Best Kids Games for Family Fun, Connection, and Learning
- 12 Kids Art Games for Fun and Creativity
- The Best Family Board Games by Age
6. Build a Fort
Encourage your kids to build a fort, inside or out. Or join in on the fort-building fun yourself!
Depending on what you have on hand, you can use large cardboard boxes, a Fort Magic kit, or sheets and furniture.
7. Set up an Indoor Scavenger Hunt for Kids
If you’re stuck inside and need something to do (that doesn’t involve a screen), try an indoor scavenger hunt! There are so many possibilities—so many directions you can take this idea! Here are some of our favorite indoor scavenger hunt ideas, including our all-time favorite, as well as a few others from around the web.
- A Make-and-Do Scavenger Hunt (the one that the kids have requested regularly for years!)
- A color scavenger hunt (great for the littles). Note: if you’re able to go outside, this can turn into a color-based nature scavenger hunt.
- A clue-based scavenger hunt. I love the rhyming clues in this indoor treasure hunt on The Spruce.
- Want more? Here are 22 indoor scavenger hunt ideas, including senses, sight words, shapes, and more.
8. Go on a Nature Walk
Get outside and enjoy nature together, whether it’s a neighborhood nature walk or a proper hike. Bring back a few nature treasures* for a spring nature table, some nature art, or to make flower suncatchers.
*Only pick items from places where it’s okay. Don’t pick flowers or take nature items from a botanical garden or arboretum.
9. Start a Garden
Whether you have a balcony with just enough space for a few pots or a large backyard, now is the perfect time to start planning and preparing a garden. Grow flowers or vegetables or both!
Choose your spot, amend the soil, and plant some seeds or starts. Watching things grow is wonderful for all ages!
For book inspiration, I recommend Sharon Lovejoy’s book, Roots, Shoots, Buckets & Boots: Gardening Together with Children.
If you want to order seeds online, try John Scheepers Kitchen Garden Seeds.
P.S. While you’re outside, trick out your backyard for extra fun.
10. Cook Together
You have to feed the family anyway, and kids love to cook!
Check out this 2-week pantry meal plan (with recipes) over on Peanut Blossom for ideas of basic meals you can cook together as a family out of the pantry. Plus she’s the author of The Ultimate Kids’ Cookbook, which teaches kids how to help prepare and cook family meals.
Or try one of these 50+ ideas and recipes for cooking with kids.
Even more kids’ activity ideas!
- Make an indoor hopscotch
- Listen to audiobooks
- Have family movie nights
- Learn to sew
Art & Play Guide for Kids
Catalina Gutierrez of Redviolet Studio often shares many creative art & play ideas here at The Artful Parent. She’s created an amazing art & play guide for kids available for purchase on her website. The “Creative Lifesaver” (available in English or Spanish) includes 7 fun sensory activities for kids drawing on her teaching experience over the last 9 years at her mobile studio in Miami, Florida. She guides parents step by step and provides a list of materials needed along with fun prompts to get kids started.
How about you? Do you have any other ideas for things to do with the kids at home right now? If so, please share in the comments!
This can be a scary time for families, OR it can be an opportunity to connect, play, make art, and be creative. Let’s make it as fun and creative as we can for our kids and for ourselves!
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