The children have gone back to school, the leaves are starting to turn, the days are getting shorter and we are on the verge of Autumn. That means that we are going to be having a lot more rainy days in the coming months. If your children are anything like mine then they need things to do to keep them occupied when it’s just too wet to play outside. Luckily if you find yourself asking “what are good rainy day activities?” then this list is for you. Here I share the best family-friendly rainy day activities that are suitable for toddlers, preschoolers, and for older kids too.
With so many streaming services like Amazon Prime Video, Netflix and Disney Plus, it couldn’t be easier to turn your front room into your own private cinema and settle down to watch your favourite film or box set. Why not add to your home cinema experience with some healthy snacks like these suggestions from womenwhowinatlife.com.
Children have been obsessed with slime for ages and it’s even easier to make than ever before. When the slime trend started it could be tricky to get the right ingredients to make a good, stretchy and gloopy slime but now with slime-making kits readily available, it couldn’t be easier. Why not take your slime to the next level by adding scents, glitter or pom-poms to make it really memorable?
Children of all ages love to bake and grown-ups love it too, especially if there are tasty treats at the end. Not only is baking fun but it is also a brilliant opportunity to teach your children about food hygiene, after all, nobody wants to eat a grey and fluffy cookie that has been dropped repeatedly! Planes, Trains and Buggies share her tried and tested child-friendly recipes here. If baking isn’t your forte then a baking club might be the answer to your prayers. It’s Me Chrissy J, shares her experience of a junior baking club here.
Board games are a classic way to pass the time and are great for getting your children to spend time away from screens and actually talking to you. Personally, I love the range of educational games for children from Orchard Toys and used them a lot when I was teaching, now I have my own children they are a favourite in our house. For more board game suggestions, have a look at these recommendations.
You could even encourage your children to get creative by helping them to make their own board games. this will also give you an opportunity to teach them more about sustainability by showing ways that you can reuse or repurpose household items.
There are so many amazing board games out there, and a lot of them are designed to be perfect for playing as a family. If you want to make sure the kids are involved and loving it as much as possible, then you might want to think about getting some Disney board games, as these are really fun for kids of all ages and you’ll be so glad to have them in the home for a rainy day.
Of course, whatever kinds of board games you play, just make sure that you are having fun with them, as that’s what really matters.
Children love crafting and there are some really easy and free ways to get crafting such as junk modelling or crafting kits. Places like The Works, Wilko, Hobbycraft and your local supermarket will usually have some crafting kits for a couple of pounds. Alternatively raid your recycling for things like yoghurt pots, cereal boxes, egg boxes and toilet roll inners then add in some glue, embellishments, scissors and felt tip pens and there are hours of fun to be had. Pinterest is your friend here, there are thousands of suggestions for junk modelling.
Build a Fort or Den
Children love building their own den or fort in the house. In fact, this is a fun activity for the grown-ups too, remember the Friends boys in Chandler and Joey’s apartment or Amy and Sheldon in Big Bang Theory? You can easily and quickly make a den by throwing a blanket over a table or a couple of chairs but if you want to get even more creative, Hobbycraft sells these cardboard colour-in playhouses that are two activities in one.
This activity fits in really well with the baking activity and the den-building activity. You could pack up a picnic of all your homemade goodies as though you were off out on an adventure and instead of just sitting down to eat it straight away, you could walk around your house imagining you are on an adventure and then eat your picnic in the den you built.
For children there’s something really exciting about sleeping somewhere different so why not have a sleepover adventure in your lounge? Make a den, pitch a small tent or just put up some camp beds and sleep in the living room for a change of scenery. You could even pretend to have a campfire and sing songs or tell stories to really set the mood.
Children need to have a wash on a regular basis because let’s face it, they can be pretty disgusting at times! Every so often we like to make bath times a little bit special by having a bath bomb, these ones from The Fizzy Fairy are our favourites, some music or a story, and a bath light or two. Once they are squeaky clean, for a special treat, my daughter likes to have her nails painted and some moisturiser gently rubbed in all over.
Homemade Play Dough
Who doesn’t love play dough? Why not have a go at making your own so you can get exactly the colours you want plus making it yourself with your little helpers adds to the experience. For a fun and sensory activity, you could make your own using this BBC easy-to-make recipe.
As the next step from making your own play dough, you could make your own salt dough. Once it has been moulded into the desired form, bake it gently in the oven, leave it to cooler then paint and decorate. This is a brilliant activity for making keepsakes and gifts, babies’ footprints and handprints anyone? Or for making ornaments and decorations for Christmas, Easter, Halloween or any other occasion. Have a look at my easy salt dough recipe here.
Make Bird Feeders
As the colder weather draws in, a great activity to do is to make bird feeders with your children. Once made, hang them up outside and then you can have even more fun by working out which birds you can see coming to eat them.
Easy To Make Fat Balls for Birds
- Paper Cups
- 200 g Wild Bird Seed
- 100 g Suet
- Carefully pierce holes in the bottom of the cups and thread string through. This will allow you to hang them up afterwards.
- Add the bird seed and suet to the pan and heat gently whilst stirring until the suet has melted.
- Once melted, stuff the mixture tightly into the cup making sure that the string is hanging out of then middle.
- Put the cups into the fridge or the freezer to cool.
- Once cooled, carefully cut away the cup and hang it outside. Make sure it's not too close to the ground to protect the birds from cats.
For even more ideas, have a look at this article from Issy at A Suffolk Mum and of course, with the right gear, there’s no reason why you can’t get outside and embrace the rain. Helen from 2 adults, 3 children has some tips to help you there.