18 device-free things to do with the kids if you’re stuck at home
Confined at home and wondering what to do with the kids? We have some ideas.
As the coronavirus pandemic tightens its grip, more of us will be spending time at home. With schools and many of the places where families socialise closed for business, children are spending more of their waking hours in their house and backyard. So, if you have kids to keep entertained, how do you fill in the seemingly endless hours ahead? Don’t despair … there are plenty of options and new experiences to discover.
18 things to do with the kids if you’re stuck at home
Make a list
Compile a list of potential activities with your children and vote each day on which ones to complete. As you think of new ideas, add them to the list.
Get the blood pumping
Make a regular time to exercise or keep fit together – take a walk around the block, play footy or go for a bike ride. It doesn’t matter what you do each day, as long as you move.
Build cubby houses
Help toddlers use chairs, a table and blankets to build an indoor cubby space.
Go on a treasure hunt...
Set up an indoor treasure hunt for younger children. Give them a list of things to find – use pictures for those too young to read a list – and whoever finishes the list first wins.
... Or a bear hunt
Take a turn round your ’hood to spot the teddy bears popping up in front windows and on verandas as Victorians join the worldwide movement to keep younger kids active and entertained – in a nod to children’s book favourite We’re Going on a Bear Hunt. Several Facebook groups offer photos and details. Put your own teddy out too.
Turn your hallway into a bowling alley
“Line up some empty plastic bottles and use an old pair of socks wrapped into a ball to create a quick and easy game of indoor bowling,” says Professor Julie Green, executive director at raisingchildren.net.au. “Make it harder by adding some weight, like sand and water, inside the bottles.”
Have a picnic
Set up an indoor picnic, or an outside picnic, if space and weather permit.
Make some playdough
Mix two cups of plain flour and half a cup of oil then add some food colouring. Slowly mix in water until you get the consistency you want.
Dust off the boardgames
Invest in some of the latest boardgames and play them along with classics like Cluedo and Monopoly. Some of the best-selling games right now include strategic card game Exploding Kittens, Dobble – described as an updated and reinvented version of Snap – and Dixit. This game involves players looking at cards, inventing a story to go with them, then other players guess which card inspired their weird and wonderful story.
Teach them to cook
“Get creative with what’s in the pantry,” says Julie. Use online apps for some recipe inspiration. Some apps allow you to enter the ingredients you have to hand and then suggest suitable recipes.