15 Kid's Activities for Rainy Days

Keep Them Occupied While You're Stuck Inside

Here in Seattle it has been a very wet, drizzly summer. For this reason, I decided to put together a list of simple activities for a range of ages to keep you and your little ones from going crazy on those rainy days.

1. Edible Finger Paint

Materials you’ll need: chocolate and vanilla pudding, food coloring

Suggested ages: 12 months and up

Encourages: sensory skills, art and creativity

  • Divide the pudding into 4-5 small cups or bowls. Using food coloring, mix the colors you and your kids choose into the vanilla pudding. The chocolate pudding can be its own color.
  • Sanitize the counter or table where your kids will be working and have everyone wash their hands before starting. Then let them at it! Create all kinds of drawings and designs with the pudding using little fingers. Eat the leftovers.

Yum! Fingerpaint you can eat.
Yum! Fingerpaint you can eat.

2. Monster Drawings

Materials you’ll need: paper, pens or pencils, crayons or colored pencils

Suggested ages: 3 and up

Encourages: fine motor skills, creativity

  • Give each kid a piece of paper and a pen or pencil. Have them close their eyes and draw a little scribble on the paper. When they open their eyes, they have to turn their scribbles into monsters or any other drawing they can see in their scribbles.
  • If desired, color the monster drawings when finished.
  • Keep younger kids occupied with crayons and paper of their own.

Keep them busy with drawing games.
Keep them busy with drawing games.

3. Cross the River

Materials you’ll need: all the blankets, pillows and cushions you can gather from around the house

Suggested ages: 4 and up

Encourages: balance and coordination, body awareness

  • Have you kids run around the house and gather up a bunch of pillows, blankets and cushions.
  • Together, create an obstacle course around a room of the house. The kids to get from one side of the room to the other while staying on the pillows/blankets/cushions without touching the ground or the alligator will eat them!

4. Tower Bombing

Materials you’ll need: soft blocks, toy soldiers or figurines (optional)

Suggested ages: 18 months and up

Encourages: fine motor skills and coordination to build the tower

  •  It’s always entertaining to build towers and then knock them down.
  • You can either build one big tower together and take turns throwing blocks at it to knock it down or you can each build your own tower and then take turns throwing blocks at each other’s towers. The last one standing wins.
  • Another variation is to divide up army men or figurines between each other and hide them throughout your tower. Try to knock down each other’s figurines. The last figurine standing wins. 

5. Mountain Climber Origami

Materials you’ll need: one square piece of paper

Suggested ages: 3 and up

Encourages:

  • Follow these instructions from origami-fun.com to fold your mountain climber. You’ll probably have to help younger ones fold.
  • Once you have your mountain climber and mountain, put your mountain climber at the bottom of the mountain, hold the bottom half of your mountain and wiggle the pieces up and down gently to make your mountain climber climb.
  • The kids can color their mountains and climbers. Younger kids will have fun coloring and will be entertained by watching the mountain climber disappear the pop out at the top of the mountain.

6. Paper Airplane Attacks

Materials you’ll need: several pieces of paper, different size for different sized airplanes (optional)

Suggested ages: 4 and up for folding, younger kids may enjoying throwing the airplanes but may need help folding

Encourages: fine motor skills, coordination

  • Fold several paper airplanes using these instructions.
  • Create a target for the airplanes to hit. You can have them knock down cans or draw a target and tape it to a window.
  • A messy variation would be to use washable or edible finger paint (see above) and dip the noses of the planes in the paint. Throw the airplanes at a paper target and see who can get their mark closest to the bull’s eye.

Prepare for a face full of flour!
Prepare for a face full of flour!

7. Find the Penny

Materials you’ll need: several cup of flour, a dish that is a couple inches deep, a penny, a butter knife

Suggested ages: 5 and up

Encourages: sensory skills, coordination, social skills

  • Pack the flour in a dish. Stick the penny in anywhere. Quickly flip the dish over onto to a plate.
  • Have the kids take turns cutting a slice in the flour. When the penny shows up in someone’s slice, that person has to try to pick up the penny with their mouth.
  • If they successfully retrieve the penny, they get a prize (a treat, a small toy, bubbles, they get to keep the penny/nickle/dime, etc).
  • Play again until everyone has a chance to try to get the penny.
  • When finished, split the remaining prizes with everyone.

8. Goop

Materials you’ll need: cornstarch, water, a bowl to mix and play with the goop

Suggested ages: 18 months and up (depending on how much mess you’re willing to clean up)

Encourages: exploration through the senses

  • Mix 1 part water with 1 part cornstarch. Have your kids play with the goop over a bowl to catch anything that slips through the fingers.
  • Hold it still in your hand and watch it melt. Squeeze it in your hand and watch the shape melt away. Tap it with your finger. Stick your finger in it and let it slowly sink in. Break pieces off and then watch them melt back together. Have fun!

9. Glue Handprints and Fingernails

Materials you’ll need: Elmer’s glue, a wooden ruler

Suggested ages: 3 and up (as long as they have the patience to let the glue dry)

Encourages: sensory skills

  • Put a small amount of non-toxic, white Elmer’s glue on the palm of the hand. Rub around so there is a thin film covering the palm. Allow a few minute to dry.
  • Once dry, slowly and carefully peel off the hand. Examine the lines unique to each hand.
  • For the glue fingernails: Put a small amount of glue down the center groove of the wooden ruler. Rub your finger down the glue to make a thin layer. Allow a few minutes to try. Once dry, slowly pull the glue up from the ruler and stick onto fingernails.  

10. Tongue Twisters

Materials you’ll need: the following tongue twisters

Suggested ages: 4 and up (age may vary depending on language skills)

Encourages: language skills, pronunciation

  • Try to say these 10 times fast!
  • The bootblack bought the boot back.
  • Selfish shellfish.
  • Fast frogs flying past fast.
  • We surely shall see the sunshine soon. 
  • Fred fed Ted bread. Ted fed Fred bread.
  • Which witch wished which wicked wish?
  • Nine night nurses nursing nicely.
  • Six sticky sucker sticks. 
  • Toy boat. 

11. Co-Worker Time

Materials you’ll need: see instructions

Suggested ages: 1 and up

Encourages: creativity, fine motor skills

  • Keep a box of supplies handy for those times when you need to get an hour or two of work done. Let your kids know that it’s co-working time! You can even give your kids a play phone and other items that make them feel that they’re really working in an office.
  • Things to keep in your co-working box: notebooks, stickers, markers, envelopes, junk mail (anything interesting such as stickers, unusual shaped and colored envelopes, keys, fake credit cards, etc.), magazines, catalogues, glue sticks, tape, kid-safe rounded scissors, any other extra pictures, pens and post-it notes.
  • You’ll be impressed with all the things your kids can come up with using this box of supplies.

12. Mix and Match Faces

Materials you’ll need: pictures of people and/or animals cut out from magazines, catalogues, or extra pictures you may have, glue sticks, crayons or colored pencils

Suggested ages: 2 and up

Encourages: creativity, fine motor skills

  • Cut out pictures of people and animals from the materials you’ve gathered and then cut off the heads from the bodies. You’ll have to do the cutting for the younger ones.
  • Glue the heads and bodies onto a piece of paper. Your kids and put different heads on different bodies or glue a head or body to the paper and then draw the body or head. 

13. Rice Krispie Treat Sculptures

Materials you’ll need: fresh Rice Crispy Treats (Rice Crispys, marshmallows, butter, vanilla)

Suggested ages: 18 months and up

Encourages: creativity, sensory skills

  • Follow the recipe for Rice Krispie Treats.
  • While the Rice Crispy treats are warm, take them and make them into sculptures. You can make a tower and have your kids add things to it or each kid can make their own personal mini-sculptures. Do whatever comes to mind and let the creativity flow! Your kids probably won’t have any problem with coming up with things to build.
  • Act fast, the cooler the rice crispy treats get the harder it will be to sculpt them.

Tip: The Rice Krispie Treat recipe is the classic recipe from the Rice Krispies' box. Add a little extra marshmallow to the recipe to make the Rice Krispies a little stiffer so that they hold their shape better. You may add food dye to the marshmallow mixture to make your sculptures more colorful.

14. House Safari

Materials you’ll need: list of animals, pen

Suggested ages: 2 and up

Encourages: literacy skills, thinking outside the box

  • Make a list of animals. Have you kids go around and find those animals around the house. Anything goes, whether it be a picture on a pencil, a sticker, a picture on the cover of a magazine, or a stuffed animal. Have them check it off the list as they find each animal. If older, have them write the name of the room where they found the animal.
  • You may need to say the animal name and go around the house with a younger toddler.

Where are all the animals hiding??
Where are all the animals hiding??

15. Sticky Note Decorating

Materials you’ll need: sticky notes, crayons or colored pencils

Suggested ages: 18 months and up

Encourages: creativity

  • Stick a row of sticky notes along a table or desk. Have your kids take them down and put them up again. Give them more notes to decorate a wall or door.
  • Have them decorate a wall or door by drawing a picture on each sticky note. 

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Comments 6 comments

chanroth profile image

chanroth 5 years ago from California, USA

I have always done origami with my young sister every time when its raining. Sometime we do a pop up book project. Its fun. :) nice hub!


Jenna Estefan profile image

Jenna Estefan 5 years ago from Seattle, WA Author

My mom got me into origami. There are so many cute things you can make! I'm always impressed with the intricate things you can make with a piece of paper. Glad you enjoyed it


Mainan Anak 5 years ago

great hub and great information.

Thanks


CZCZCZ profile image

CZCZCZ 4 years ago from Oregon

Awesome list of activities for children to do on a rainy weather day. I have added a link to this hub from a hub I wrote about activities for rainy days in Portland Oregon. Sometimes just staying at home and being creative is the right thing to do in order to have a good time during a bad weather day. These suggestions are well thought out and easy to do on a budget, enjoyed reading this one.


Jenna Estefan profile image

Jenna Estefan 4 years ago from Seattle, WA Author

Thanks, CZCZCZ! We live north of Seattle, so we understanding the meaning of rainy days! It's always nice to see some new, fresh ideas for activities and things to do, so I'm going to check out your hub as well. Thanks for reading!


RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 3 years ago from the short journey

You have some great ideas here. It would be hard to pick a favorite, but I like the Rice Krispies sculpturing because it's art and it's one of those "of course!" ideas.

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