It looks like we’re all members of the stay-at-home club now which means 24 hours under one roof with everyone that we love. And let’s try and keep it that way! I know I’m preaching to the choir when I say I’m exhausted and I’m surviving on snacks and Netflix alone, trying to keep everyone entertained. Oh while also continuing their education and making sure we don’t all kill each other in the process. So from one mama to another here are 7 activities for kids at home. If you have any ideas you’d like to add to the list, please comment them below! We mamas need to stick together!
I wholeheartedly support anything that encourages quiet time! So reading is a family favorite over at the Thomson house. There are so many good resources right now that make reading time even easier. Everyday Reading with Janssen Bradshaw has so many good ideas and resources on her website. She can show you all the free online books and non-screen activities. Audible is streaming all of their children’s books for free right now on their site. On Instagram, celebrities are reading their favorite books out loud. Check them out at @savebystories. They have almost 100 posts.
Art projects are great ways to keep kids occupied during the day once the Netflix series has ended or you might die if you listen to Frozen one more time! My kids love to check out Mo Willems on Youtube. We also turn to Art for Kids which has step by step drawing tutorials on a kid level. And of course, Creative Galaxy on Amazon Prime is a little television series about solving problems with art. It’s really cute and it feels more educational than watching a billion Disney movies. My kids are always inspired to create after they watch and episode!
You’ve got to get those wiggles out! Trust me, getting those wiggles out means a smoother day for everyone and that includes making time for your movement. My kids love doing Cosmic Kids Yoga or Go Noodle. They can be short and sweet or be a little bit longer, so they’re great to last as long as they hold your kid’s attention. I also recommend a quick neighborhood walk or setting up an indoor (or outdoor) obstacle course. One of my friends had her kids run up the stairs while she timed them. The sheer element of competition was enough to keep her kids entertained for a bit and to get some energy out.
Teaching Life Skills
Now is a great time to teach those kids life skills that they might be missing out on while they’re at school all day. I’m talking about cleaning, organizing, tackling new chores they haven’t tried before, baking, cooking, etc. I had another friend who realized that none of her older kids knew what checks, credit cards or debit cards were, so they had to figure it out via internet or other resources and then report back what they learned during dinner. Every day she gives them a new concept and they have to learn about it and then report back to the family. I thought that was a great idea and required minimal work on mom’s part.
Homeschooling is being tackled in many different ways right now. Don’t stress about what anyone else is doing, just do what works best for you and your kids. Whatever that might look like. I like to use a few worksheets or little spelling tests with Marjie because she’s a little older and has been to school. She also does a looooot of reading and building things which definitely counts as learning. But with the boys, we do things a bit more simply like practice our letters in a pan of rice. There are lots of different learning activities available on Pinterest for all ages. Go see what you can find!
Time to open that Pinterest board and get to work. All of the kid crafts you pinned and the mama crafts you wanted to tackle. Let’s do it! Everyone can set up their craft and get to work. If you have younger kids that require a little bit more supervision I recommend making play dough or making an invention out of craft material at home. Making play dough is easy and can keep kids entertained for hours and days to come. Older kids can take on bigger crafts on their own or maybe design a game for the family to play that night.
This is one activity that we did that I posted about on my Instagram. At the beginning of the week, we chose a theme. For example, last week our theme was all about the sky. During the week, we did one activity every day that related to our theme. It helped make choosing the activity a lot easier because it narrowed down options. We learned Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, did a rain cloud in a jar experiment, made moon cookies and I swirled frosting with different colors so it looked like a galaxy. On our last day of the week, my husband drew a mini scale of the solar system with chalk in our cul-de-sac and our kids ran from planet to planet as he called out the names. Theme weeks are awesome because it builds excitement around the activities and it checks so many boxes of learning, making and movement.
There are a lot of great resources out there and a lot of mama’s working together to help each other get through this. Stay at home activities don’t have to suck the life of out you. If you have great ideas please share them below! I’d love to hear what your family is doing! And if you try any of these activities, let me know what you think!