It’s raining. You are stuck at home with your children and are frantically looking for ways to keep your restless young ones entertained. You might be tempted to pop in a movie or watch online videos, but unless the material is educational, you realize it will add little value to your child’s life. Additionally, watching too much television can be detrimental to your child’s health and development, and screen time should be limited for young children. In fact, a study found that children who spent too much time watching a screen or using electronics were at risk of developing behavioral problems, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
This leaves you with activities that are more hands-on, but first, you need to create a proper atmosphere in order to get your children to focus and participate. Remove electronic distractions, such as cell phones, tablets, and video games — hopefully, without any tantrums taking place. Of course, you can always promise to return the gadgets later on.
The next step is to select some activities that your children would be interested in. Be sure to ask them for their input and throw in some fun suggestions, but ultimately leave it up to them to decide. In case you don’t know what to do, the following activities are sure to help keep your children busy and stimulate their motor skills and minds.
Fill your kitchen with fun and warmth by baking something together. Ask your kids what their favorite baked good is and find a recipe. You can involve them in every step of the bake, especially easy tasks like measuring out and mixing ingredients. This is also a perfect opportunity for them to practice their arithmetic skills and learn about ratios. Learning how to bake and cook will also teach self-sufficiency. For additional fun, have them whip up some heavy cream and decorate their baked creations.
Inspire your young architect or engineer by getting some Lego bricks and creating something together. Lego sets come with directions to build cars, buildings, and castles, or you can get bricks in bulk and let their imagination take over with freestyle building.
You can also visit a local hobby shop and purchase a bag of balsa wood. As it is an extremely lightweight and easy-to-cut wood, it can be used to build anything from model airplanes to homes and can be carved with ease. The pieces can also be glued with superglue for fast results. While you’re there, buy some hobby paint and fine brushes and decorate the car or tank you have assembled together.
You can also create geometrical shapes out of marshmallows and toothpicks (and roast them when you’re done).
You can also practice chemistry in the kitchen. Melt some sugar to create caramel and have the kids drizzle it on wax paper to create different shapes. Once it’s cooled and hardened, your candy creations will be ready! For more excitement, add a few tablespoons of baking soda into a tall glass or deep bowl and add vinegar and watch a chemical reaction take place. You can even make homemade slime together that your kids will go absolutely nuts for.
A rainy day doesn’t necessarily have to spell doom and boredom for you and your little ones. As long as you stock up on the necessary materials ahead of time, you can enjoy some of these fun projects together on your next rainy day!