Is school cancelled for the 3rd day in a row? Are the roads too dangerous to go to the movies or museum? Are you stuck inside day after day? Have you exhausted all your indoor mommy and daddy tricks?
Think outside the box and try these boredom-busting, energy-expelling ideas buy using items around your house while keeping those brain cells alive.
- Supplies: Christmas ribbon, string or crêpe paper streamers; tape
- Set up: Tape up streamers in a criss-cross fashion across the room or hall way. Vary the height of each streamer.
- Play: Have the kids maneuver their way through the streamers without touching them.
- Variations: Leave them up for an entire day and have the kids practice their Ethan Hunt whenever they need a snack. Use different colors and avoid only one color. Give each child their own color to tape up for the others to maneuver. Tape up in two locations and have races. Add pillows, cushions or blankets for an added challenge. Turn off the lights and add a flashlight.
- Educational Component: Make a graph or keep track of how long each attempt takes. How does the time change with each attempt? Why does it change? Make a Venn diagram to compare two maze locations. What are the same and what are different about each? Do the added pillows help or hurt your attempts and why?
- Supplies: a box or laundry basket; Throwing materials: stuffed animals or socks or crumpled up paper
- Set up: Set up basket in the center of a room. Set a pile of throwing material about 3-4 feet away from the basket.
- Play: Take turns tossing the stuffed animals into the basket.
- Variations: Use a piece of masking tape on the floor to identify a foul line. Make 2-4 foul lines around the basket at varying distances and have each child try to make a basket from each line. Measure the distance from each foul line. If you don’t have a tape measure handy – measure using anything ( a book, card cookie sheet etc). Try shooting small animals from the closest line and large animals from the furthest line and then switch it up. Use a blindfold for added challenge
- Educational Component: Make a graph or keep track of which animals were easier to get in the basket. Why is this? Which foul line was easier? Use a Venn diagram to compare two throwing materials what is the same and different about each?
Fast and Furious
- Supplies: tape or scrap paper cut into strips
- Set up: Tape or place paper in a maze shape complete with dead ends.
- Play: Have the child follow the maze.
- Variations: Use a car or ball to trace the maze. Bring an outdoor ride on toy in the house to follow the maze.
- Educational Component: Pick a number and create that many dead ends or that many turns. Use cut pieces of paper or popcorn kernels to trace the maze. How many does it take to follow the path? How many more does it take if you make a wrong turn?