As a childcare provider, I love to take the kids outside to play during beautiful spring and summer days, but activities are more limited on rainy days. I have a few activities that I like to keep in mind that will keep the kids busy on the days that have to be spent in the house.
1.Charades- this is a classic game, but I find that it can be adapted for many age groups. You have a few options when planning for the game. If the children are older, you can have them choose the people or animals they want to act out. For young children, draw a picture or use clip art for the person or thing they will act out. If you are playing with a mixed group of ages, write and draw. This way, those who cannot read are not excluded from the game.
2. Hide and go seek- this is another classic game, but it can be played with some twists. First, make sure the children know which places they are not allowed to hide in. Next, designate the person who will be counting. When the counting is finished, let the children who are found help to find the other ones. One twist that you can put on this game is to do it in the dark. You should make sure that the children are comfortable with the dark before the game begins.
3. Scavenger hunt- make a list of items that children need to find around the house. If you are playing with children who cannot read, make a picture of the item they need to find.
4. Treasure hunt- make a series of clues leading children from room to room. One clue will lead to the next, and the last clue will lead to the treasure or a prize that you have for the children. This game can be adapted by having all the children work together. This way, you have the older ones read and the younger ones can still follow along on the hunt.
5. Indoor picnic- this is a fun idea for children when it’s not nice outside. Gather all the supplies for a picnic lunch and set up a blanket in the living room. Children love the idea of having a picnic inside and breaking from the routine of eating in the kitchen.
6. Penny toss- use a muffin tin an some pennies and have a great time. Cut a piece of construction paper into small squares (enough for each muffin hole). Label each square with a number from one to five. Have children throw pennies from different lengths from the muffin tin. Add up scores to see who wins. Note: I used pennies because other items like noodles and beans do not have enough weight and bounce from the tin.
Hopefully, some of these activities will keep your little ones engaged on those rainy days that must be spent inside!