When the weather is too hot to have your child outside or the sun doesn’t feel like shining at all and the rain clouds throw a wrench in outdoor plans, sometimes you’re forced to stay inside. During the summer, when school is out and all kids want to do is play outside, ride their bikes, go for a swim, it can be a bit of a bummer. But bad weather doesn’t have to ruin a day full of fun, there are so many things you and your little one can do to pass the time and have a blast inside.
Here are just a handful of ideas:
Activity Ideas for Scorching (or Rainy) Summer Days
- Color or paint – This is one of the simplest but easiest ways to keep your child entertained. And if you’re worried about the mess, try out a water activity book which promotes fine-motor skills and hand-eye coordination but doesn’t leave you with a rainbow of colors to clean up after!
- Make paper bag puppets! – One of the best parts about this craft is it can be made with things that you might already have around the house and allows your child’s creativity to bloom with their own envisioned puppet. Plus, you can put on a show with your puppets when you’ve finished!
- Tell stories and dress up – Watching your child’s creativity expand and shine is enthralling, so if they’re old enough to tell stories, write them down or help them to create a book and act it later.
- Build a fort – Just throw together a few blankets over your sofa and voila!
- Bake something! – Not only is this a great way to get your little one involved in the kitchen, but you wind up with a yummy treat to share afterward!
- Do a science experiment – May science experiments can be done using basic materials, simple ingredients and are a safe and simple way for children to learn, discover, and most importantly have fun!
- Make playdough or “slime” - The Best Ideas for Kids not only has endless ideas for you to try but has a great recipe for a fluffier take on the popular slime to let your child explore their sense of touch.
- Play “I Spy” – This will have you both thinking creatively and using your sight senses to look at the world together and describe things visually – a great opportunity to practice naming colors, size, shapes, etc.!
- Make bubbles – Fill a dish or cup with water and just a little bit of dish soap, then use a straw to make bubble towers! Encourage your child to try to blow the biggest bubble possible and then let them POP it!
- Watch a movie OR go see one in theaters! – Many theaters have designated movies and movie times specifically for children and their families. Take a quick look into your local theater and ask about any special showings they have. Recently The Autism Society partnered with AMC to offer a Sensory Friendly Film program which turns the lights up and the sound down so moviegoers can dance, walk, sing or shout!
- Get Ice Cream – Who doesn’t love a good cone to cool you down on a hot summer day?
- Have an indoor picnic! – Instead of regular lunchtime, lay out a blanket, make some sandwiches, and have a picnic inside.
- Do a puzzle – There are so many different levels of puzzles and they can also be a great learning experience.
- Play a board game – Board games can be a bit difficult for younger children, but there are a ton of board games across all ages, some as young as 2 years old even!
- Create your own game! – Kids can be so creative and allowing them to create their own game is a great opportunity to let them wiggle that creative bug.
Leave the house:
- Visit your local library - Look up hours for “reading time” and enjoy story-time with other kids or pick out your favorite books you can bring home and read together.
- Visit a Children’s Science Museum or find other free activities in your area – Lots of science museums are free to the general public and offer loads of activities for children to explore and learn. There are so many online searches for finding free indoor activities in your area!
The possibilities truly are endless, especially with a child who has a wild imagination. The internet is a wonderful resource with an infinite list of things to do, so you’ll never be wanting for a new or creative idea to keep you and your child amused. PBS.org has a great activity finder for children of any age when you’re in need of a little bit of outside contribution. Ask your kid what he/she wants to do and you never know, you might get a crazy, exciting idea you never thought of!