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PlaygroundEquipment Blog
Saturday, August 30, 2014

15 Fun Rainy Day Indoor Games for Toddlers and Preschool

Rainy days may spell cranky days for parents and kids because plans are likely to be adjusted or worse, cancelled. Then again, such days and night must be taken with a hefty ounce of positivity and possibility. The next time you are stuck indoors, you might want to look into a good number of ideas we gathered, from kid-friendly and parent-friendly blogs.  These 15 rainy day games for toddlers and preschool kids may just make you look forward to the rainbow after any given rain.

Fill the Clothesline Fast Contests 

Photo from Toddler Approved 
Rainy days are perfect for cooking a nice, warm meal for the family to just sit down and enjoy. While your kids wait for dinner to be served, why not let them hang out, literally and figuratively? Simply tie a string across your dining chairs. Your string must be able to hold the weight of socks and a good number of clothespins. The child who hangs the most number of socks in 30 seconds wins. Other variations include the craziest sock combinations, or even changing the socks to lettered papers. Know more about this contest from the Toddler Approved blog.

Toddler Game: Easy Maze “Round-The-Cereal-Box” 

Photo from Toddler Toddler
Clueless about what to do with your pile of cereal boxes? Take a tip or two from 12 easy ways to transform these boxes. Our favorite, though, is this personalized maze that will not only sharpen your child’s problem-solving skills but also hones real-life creativity.  For this game, pick two winners- the fastest maze-solver and the quirkiest maze design. Head over to Toddler Toddler’s for the details of this quick project.

The Perfect Parachute Game 

Parachute toy
Photo from Mama Smiles 

Aside from keeping your clutter and garbage out of sight, a thin garbage bag can actually be fashioned into a parachute. To up the ante of this game, gather your kids at the top of your stairs and see whose parachute will have the best landing.  This game allows kids of all ages to strategize without them knowing it. Learn the tips of crafting the perfect parachute from Mama Smiles.

40 Ways to Entertain Your Kids While Lying down: Yes It’s Possible!

A rainy afternoon is perfect for lying in bed, however this seems impossible especially when you’re with a fleet of bustling toddlers.  Then again, Baby Center shows you that there are 40 ways to get some time to relax as you lie down and let still entertain your tiny tots.

One mom shares her tried and tested trick, “Be a patient and lie on the couch of bed. Let the kids be the doctor, taking your vitals, bringing you “medicine,” and giving you shots with their doctor kit.” Talk about finally being able to have the best of both worlds!

Do Absolutely Nothing

do absolutely nothing
Photo from The Art of Simple

You read it right, The Art of Simple strongly recommends that doing nothing may actually be productive for kids and adults, too. Keep all your gadgets and take advantage of the rainy days. Why not try counting raindrops with your kids, for a change? You may encourage your kids to daydream or try out siesta.

According to Sleep Foundation, 20-30 minutes of napping improves alertness and performance. A short nap can even lessen the chances of committing an error and even diminishes the likelihood of encountering an accident.

Easy, Earth-friendly Homemade Playdough Recipe 

Erika of Musings From A Stay At Home Mom has nailed a budge-proof homemade playdough that does not crumble and keeps the playspace far from messy.  A report from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) revealed that playdough games pave the way for kids to be more engaged with what they are doing and are found to be more persistent in their endeavor. More so, as children go about their art sessions, they are able to build better connection between how they perceive their immediate environment and the world beyond their space. To hack this non-toxic, cheap thrill, check out Erika’s tips.

The World’s Easiest Lava Lamp 

So, here’s a game that will get the eye and ears of future scientists. More than building your own lava lamp, this project challenges you to seek answers to  questions that will require your attention to details, such as: Does the size of the bottle  affect the number of blobs being produced? Are you getting curious about the other three questions or would you rather try your hands at this without the “geeky” strings attached? See the full Science Bob project here.

Preschool Play with Twister Plates

Photo from The Outlaw Mom 

Spare party plates make perfect twister plates that can slide and glide on a covered play area. For a change, try to inject a step on the color kind of twist to this idea. Not only do you burn energy, you also get to brush up on your kid’s skills, too.  See how preschools kids huddle together better with a few plastic plates via The Outlaw Mom.  This game is good for indoor playspaces,be it at home or in your favorite recreational spaces.

Foamy Marble Masterpieces with the Help of Daddy

Get dad to join the indoor games for kids, too! With his trusty shaving cream and a hefty dose of food coloring, tiny tots can swirl the rainy day slur away. Apart from being a masterpiece, playing with materials is also a sensory activity, too. Get tips from Jen Betterly in her blog for Parent Trap. You may also use this as a centerpiece during snacks or your kid’s study table for an instant perky punch.  In this way you get to reward your child’s work of art as well.

Build a Play Box Car for You and Your Tiny Tot, Too

Find a box big enough to house you, your kid and perhaps a few stuffed animals. You also need a sturdy tape for the flaps before you inch your way in and out of your space. This is a game that requires some muscle power and the ability to maneuver without toppling over your furniture. Get a guide to coach you and see who can get from one side of the room to the other fastest. View the complete rundown of the box car project from Kidspot Australia.

Fine-tune Motor Skills with Screws and Anchors

Rainy day indoor activities, like this screw and anchor box game is definitely a great way to polish the motor skills of your kids. Face each other and make him/her follow what you are doing. Don’t forget to give him/her short yet precise instructions, especially if it’s the first time s/he’ll be holding a screwdriver.

Before you indulge in this game, check if your box is not too thick or too thin. As Simple Fun For Kids says, the test of a good cardboard lies with its ability to withstand holes that are neither exactly too easy nor too difficult to do.

Bubbles and Baubles for Tantrum-free Toddlers

Photo from Tame My Toddler 

Aside from the known fact that any bubble feast is enough to catch the fancy of tantrum-throwing toddlers, Tame My Toddler shares that it is also  a good and non-conventional way to improve speech. This game exercises the muscles of the mouth;  hence, producing the right form for speaking better and faster is also a bubble away.

String Scavenger Hunt on a Shoestring

Photo from Jamie Reimer via Hands-On As We Grow 

The best rules of any rainy day games are those that come in three’s since they are easy to remember and they lessen the likelihood of confusion. This is why we adore Jamie Reimer’s  blog for Hands-On As We Grow.

For a scavenger hunt on a shoestring, all you need are bits and pieces of colored papers, a ball of yarn, and a considerably roomy space. Lace your house with the yarn that has a number of items that your child is to gather in his/her journey to the unknown in a space that s/he knows so well.
Non-spooky Halloween Spin Treasure Hunt

Got 20 minutes to spare? How about a quick Halloween-inspired scavenger hunt for a non-spooky adventure? Lisa Mason’s blog for My Kid’s Adventure notes that treasure hunts are interactive, creative and inexpensive boredom-killers. Make the most of your old Halloween party items and costumes. This encourages kids to be in character and live up to the idea of themed play. Not only do they get to play their parts; they also push their imagination to a turf that they might not have seen before.

Edible, Incredible Indoor Sandbox 

Photo from Arleegreenwood via My Small Potatoes 

Fun play is safe play. For younger kids who explore the world through their unguarded ways like putting anything they get hold of inside their mouths, this indoor sandbox is something you might want to try. What’s nicer is that it does not take up too much space and you can even move it indoors and outdoors, depending on the weather and your kid’s mood.  See up close and really great photos via My Small Potatoes.

Make Rainy Day Kid-Friendly is Parent-Friendly

With all the unexpected twists and turns of the rainy days that are here to stay, parents must make the most of such “down days” to bond with their children while promoting a productive activity, too.

These fun and safe games are sure to kick the tantrums and the woes that kids of all ages have. Remember, you need not spend a fortune in bringing your kids a worthwhile time indoors. Injecting your creative juices and of course, looking at how you can teach them to make the most of what items you already have are keys to win the game of life’s many rainy days to come.

Learn about the author: Jennifer Holmes

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