Skip to main content

Indoor activities during the rain to keep kids busy and happy

Learning meets fun: What to do when it's raining and children are bored

For children who like to play outside (and who doesn’t?!), a rainy day can hamper their plans. You might be wondering how to keep them occupied. And you might be frantically planning out activities for bored kids — those that are limited indoors, at least. But don’t worry! Even inside, there are still lots of ways to have fun. Check out some of the following indoor activities during the rain, and adjust them to suit your family’s needs.

Child and parents playing hide-and-seek in their living room
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Sensory play that uses everyday items to boost brain development

Exploring the world through the senses is an important part of child development. There are numerous ways you can encourage sensory play in your household. The possibilities are endless when it comes to appropriate materials. From kneading dough to placing their hands in a bowl of uncooked rice to wafting scents of extracts, many foods are a great choice to explore with the senses. Sensory bins can be created (and later modified) according to a theme, such as desert ecology or animals on a farm. But whatever you choose to place in a sensory bin, be mindful of potential choking hazards.

A group of kids dressed up in costumes
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Fashion show for your little designers to stretch their creativity

For a fun home fashion show, let children select clothing of theirs and yours to conjure up wild outfits as they please. Playing music and taking photos while kids walk down the runway really reinforces that fashion show vibe. This activity can also be a way to practice colors: Lay out clothes of different hues and ask children to make certain combinations. Alternatively, kids can make mock outfits of their favorite characters. Regardless of whether you pick a theme for the fashion show or not, it doesn’t have to be a contest!

Parents with children playing a board game
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Game day to encourage teamwork and problem solving

An entire day of activities can easily be taken up by games. Hand games can be more complex than you think. Ever heard of rock, paper, scissors, lizard, Spock? If you have board games on hand, pull those out and let siblings play together. For an individual activity, have children work on a jigsaw puzzle. The floor helps children learn to balance, and charades exercises word retrieval skills. An indoor scavenger hunt is arguably a game, as is hide-and-seek. Card games to try include slapjack, go fish, war, rummy, bridge, and solitaire. Games can enhance various skills while being entertaining at the same time.

A family gathered around the computer booking a trip
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Virtual field trips — oh the places you’ll go… online!

You can see much of the world from the comfort of your own home. Thanks to the power of the webcam and live streams, recordings of animals and landmarks are widely available. Zoos and aquariums often stream live video of specific exhibits, while some institutions have published exclusive behind-the-scenes footage. Virtual planetariums exist, which allow you to explore the night sky and learn about stars and other celestial bodies. There are even entire museums available to peruse in an interactive or video format, such as the Smithsonian and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Dad and daughter using toy experiment tools

Science experiments that spark your children’s curiosity and sense of wonder

You and your children can do many home experiments with everyday foods and chemicals. Combine cornstarch and water to make Oobleck, which is an example of a non-Newtonian fluid and is also fun to play with. Use food coloring, dish soap, and milk to demonstrate the concepts of polarity and solubility. Or, look up a recipe to make ice cream in a bag. Layer different liquids, like honey, milk, and orange juice to see density at play. Write in invisible ink with lemon juice and reveal the message with a flame. This and numerous other science activities are educational and enjoyable!

You don’t have to let a rainy day rain on your parade — and you can remind your kids of that. Many household objects are more versatile than they initially seem. Hopefully, our ideas have inspired you on how your children can stay busy on a rainy day.

Editors' Recommendations

The best Halloween costumes for a family of 4 that are simple to find or create
Halloween themes for your crew of four
Family of four dressed in Halloween costumes.

Dressing up for Halloween as a family is a bonding experience your kids will remember forever. Plus, it might get you guys the good candy for being the cutest family out trick-or-treating. Whether you have little ones or older kids, there are a variety of group costume ideas to get the whole family in the spooky spirit. Check out some of the best Halloween costumes for a family of four that will make your crew the neighborhood celebrities on All Hallows' Eve.

Dress up as your favorite animated or movie family
Use being a family of four to your advantage by looking up families that feature four or more members, then each family member could pick their favorite character and bring the beloved show or movie to life. Let the little kids pick out their favorite show or see if the parents want to throw it back to a movie they grew up with.
Iconic animated families to recreate

Read more
7 fun outdoor fall games kids can play
Get your children outside to play these fall games and enjoy the cooler weather
Kids playing outside In leaves.

Even if the autumn season still brings the occasional warm, sunny day where you live, fall brings plenty of crisp, fresh air that's perfect for outdoor games. It's a season that so many people love because of the cooler temperatures and the beauty of the changing leaves. It's the perfect time to throw on a sweater and get the kids off the couch and out of the house to play fun fall games.

Kids love to be outside, especially if there are awesome games for them to play. If you've been looking for outdoor games for your kids to play this fall, check out these creative ideas. And parents, you are more than welcome to join the kiddos in any of these outdoor games to make beautiful autumn memories.

Read more
10 fun fall activities the whole family will enjoy
Embrace the fall season with these family-friendly, fun activities
Boy laying in a pile of leaves

Although many of us are sad when summer finally comes to an end, we quickly get excited when we realize that fall has finally arrived! After all, autumn is such a fantastic season. Pumpkins line the outdoor displays of stores, Halloween merchandise starts to fill the shelves, and it's the perfect time to bring out those comfy sweaters that had been packed away all summer. Let's not forget that it's finally pumpkin spice season once again, too! It's also a wonderful time of the year to engage in some good old-fashioned fun with the whole family.

Fall gives families so many activities that can be done indoors and out. From pumpkin picking to bobbing for apples, there is quite an array of activities for fall. Here are some of our favorite family fall activities you can try with your own family.

Read more