Ideas for entertaining children in lockdown

Posted on: March 30th, 2020 | by Laura Murdoch | No Comments

If you have children, you’ll be starting your second week with them at home. If you’re struggling to find ways to keep them entertained, we’ve put together a list of great ideas.

All ages

Audiobooks

While schools are off, Audible is offering free streaming on some children’s books. This is a great way to keep children entertained and keep them engaged. It’s a great way to keep them learning without it feeling like school.

Family going for a walk in the sun

Go for a walk

At the moment, the lockdown guidelines allow all non-high risk people to go outside once per day for exercise. People from the same household can leave the house in a group, so try and go on a family walk somewhere quiet. Just be careful to keep a 2m distance from other walkers.

Tidy the house

Take a tip from Mary Poppins and try and make your Spring cleaning a game. Why not set challenges for younger kids. Try something like “who can pick up 5 pieces of clothing the fastest?” or “who can organise their toys the best?” With older kids, offer them rewards like time playing games or watching TV.

Child planting seeds in eggshells

Plant something

This is something that you can do no matter where you live. Either plant something in your garden or start an indoor herb garden. At the moment, you can still order from most online retailers, so you can find some fun things to watch grow.

Find some educational activities for them

Just because they aren’t in school doesn’t mean they can’t still learn. You can search for free resources from websites like Twinkl and find something for any age.

Watch some TV

You might have been reading plenty for articles that suggest you plan out every moment of you kid’s day but there’s no need to stress about it. Allowing your children to watch some TV isn’t the end of the world. It’s about getting a good balance.

Toddlers

Create your own Sensory toy box

It’s easy to create a selection of great sensory toys in your own home. There are plenty of ideas available on the internet but you just have to keep safety in mind. To get you started, check out either of this handy guide.

Toddler playing the drums on pans

Pots and pans drumset

Okay, it might be a bit of a loud one but this is a classic way to entertain your kids. It will keep them occupied, engaged, and tire them out a bit.

Get them moving

There are plenty of ways that you can get your toddler to keep active in the house. There are plenty of resources online for indoor activities. Like Wiggle Waggle, a movement and literacy series that will help them learn at the same time.

Mess-Free Painting

Use this recipe to create a mess-free way for your younger kids to play with paints. Not only do you not have to worry about cleaning up but it’s something that can be used again and again.

Young boy with paint on his hands

Create a sticky spiderweb

Using tape, create a spiderweb in a doorway and throw rolled up bits of old newspapers at it. This is a great way to help develop their gross motor skills.

 

Aged 4-6

Young girl, stay at home, reading

Scavenger hunt

Organise a scavenger hunt around your house or in your garden. Make a list of the things you have in your house or garden and have your children tick them off the list when they find them. You can find an example of a nature hunt for your garden here.

Take part in this 30 day Lego challenge

If your kids love Lego, then get them to follow these daily prompts and let their creativity flourish.

Engage their brain

Search the internet for any free activity sheets or colouring pages that you can download and print out for free. There are some great examples on sites like Orchard Toys. These will keep your kids quiet and make sure they’re still learning.

Build a fort

This is another absolute classic. Use whatever pillows or sheets you have around and make the best fort or den you can. Let their imaginations run wild and see what they come up with. Then snuggle up inside for a snack or a story.

Family baking biscuits

Bake or cook together

We know that flour is still in short supply in most places but baking together is a great way to engage children. Give them easy and safe jobs to do and help strengthen their relationship with food. They’ll feel motivated and proud of their achievements.

Aged 7+

Get crafty

Use whatever you can find around the house and let your creativity run riot. You might find yourself with a lot of toilet roll holders at the moment, so see what you can construct from them.

Child drawing a picture

Learn to draw

Every Tuesday and Thursday, children’s author Rob Biddulph is doing a special Draw With Rob class on Facebook and Instagram. Set your children up with paper and a pencil and let them draw along. The first class is on his Facebook page.

Get moving

You’ve no doubt heard about this but Joe Wicks is releasing his own P.E. lessons every morning at 9 am on his YouTube. Either join in with them live or catch up with the lessons later. Check back on his playlist to catch up.

Two children exercising at home

Play games over Skype

Your older children will be missing their friends so arrange playdates over video chat. They can chat, watch videos together, or play games all while social distancing. They can even do their daily P.E. lessons together using certain conferencing tools.

Make a stop motion animation

Put all of their action figures or toys to good use and put together a stop-motion animation film. It’s much easier than it sounds. Take a series of photos on a phone and use one of many editing tools to string them together into a film. Not only will it keep them busy but it takes a lot of time and concentration. And they’ll love watching the finished product and sharing it with their friends.

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