20 fun activities to entertain your kids at home

With the school holidays on the horizon, parents will be wondering how to entertain the children.

Travel and eating out can be expensive, but entertaining the little ones doesn’t have to be expensive.

There are plenty of items around the house that can be turned into playthings for hours of fun, especially when playing outside isn’t an option in cold or wet weather.

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Here’s a list of 20 fun activities to do at home during midterm, as reported by the Liverpool Echo.

1. Build a den

It’s a classic and so simple. Just use cushions, pillows or sheets to create a little den for your little ones or let the older kids do all the heavy lifting.

2. Shoebox Dream House

This is great if you have a lot of shoeboxes around the house.

Let your little one design a different scene in each box, cutting out pictures from catalogs and magazines to stick in their shoebox.

They could do a different scene in each box, for example. a living room, a bathroom, a bedroom and stack them on top of each other to form a dream house.

Or they could make a shoebox farm or a zoo, whatever their imagination allows.

Alternatively, if you don’t have shoe boxes, use a large sheet of paper, A2 or a few A4 sheets taped together, draw the outline of a house, then divide the house into rooms and paste pictures from catalogs of furniture, etc. create a paper dream house.

3. Boy/Girl

An old school favorite. Take a piece of paper, using a pen or pencil, divide the paper into columns with different categories like boy, girl, color, country, etc.

Then you go through the alphabet and have to fill in the columns thinking of things starting with that letter.

You get points deducted if the answers are duplicates, but the winner is the one with the most correct answers.

Write a story or make an alphabetical list

4. Blow the Fish

Another game you can play is blow the fish.

Cut fish shapes out of newspaper, then if you have a long hallway or even a large space, lay the paper fish on the floor at one end, then draw a chalk line at the other end.

The first child to blow their fish across the room and to the chalk line wins.

5. The art of hand tracing

It’s so simple, have your child draw around their hand and then use colors to turn the shape of the hand into a work of art.

If they want something a little more messy, they can create shapes from their handprints by dipping their hands in water-based paint and printing on paper.

6. A good board game

You can’t beat a classic board game like Monopoly or Snakes and Ladders and also games like Guess Who, Jenga, Twister and Connect 4. Why not try the Middlesbrough version of Monopoly if you know someone with a game?

Middlesbrough Monopoly launched at the Riverside Stadium in October 2006

7. Tennis ball

You need an inflated balloon, two paper plates and two popsicle sticks. Glue the sticks to the plates to make paddles or bats, then your kids can beat the ball against each other without damaging your finest ornaments.

8. Color Scavenger Hunt

Your children can learn their colors while you try to do certain tasks.

Give them a bucket and ask them to find 10 different objects of a certain color.

When they come back with a full bucket, give them another color and so on.

9. Musical Statues

It’s not just for parties and it will warm the kids up on a cold day.

Put some music on, let your kids dance but when the music stops they have to freeze like a statue, if they move they’re out until the remaining child is the winner.

Fun for the whole family.

10. Reading

In the age of digital technology, we must remember that fun comes from the simplest things like reading a book with your child.

11. Hide and Seek/Sardines

Sardines are a variant of hide and seek accepting that only one person hides while everyone tries to find them, when the first seeker finds the hider then they join them in the hideout and so on until ‘they’re all crushed like sardines and only one researcher is gone.

12. Hot and Cold

Hide an object in the house and say hot if your child is near and cold if he is far away until he finds the object.

13. Simon Says

Another classic, you do whatever has the words Simon says at the start, like Simon says “Jump up and down”, but if you just say “Jump up and down” and the player does it, he is eliminated.

14. Zeros and Crosses, Hangman

Your classic pen and paper games never go out of style, they are simple and can also keep the kids busy on the train, bus or in a café.

Happy family reading a book

15. Costume box

Your kids can mix and match their own costumes, a good tip is to shop your local charity stores for accessories such as hats, belts, scarves and costume jewelry, you’ll be surprised what you could find it and kids will have a blast rummaging through the dress-up box.

16. Indoor picnic, camping, tea party

Set up a picnic blanket or your tent in the living room and enjoy something to eat indoors without having to worry about the rain blowing you away or the wind blowing it all away.

If you like, you can play with pretend food to avoid mess on the mat.

17. Creative Writing

Let your children’s imagination soar with them.

Give them the first line of a story, like “Fred didn’t like water, it would have been nice if he wasn’t a…” or “Suzie lived in a tree with her.. .” and then just let them finish the story.

18. Bowling for toilet paper rolls

Get six rolls of toilet paper and arrange them like bowling pins and use balled up socks to knock them over.

19. Building Blocks

A classic for toddlers, they can have hours of fun building towers and knocking them down.

20. Sing nursery rhymes

So simple but so effective for your little ones especially rhymes with actions like Winding the reel, The wheels of the bus and Heads, shoulders, knees and toes.

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Sally J. Minick