These Activities Are Perfect for Restless Kids Who Are Stuck Indoors

by guest writer Sheila Olson

February 22, 2018

Photo via Unsplash
As much as kids enjoy splashing around in mud puddles or having snowball fights, the weather is sometimes simply too nasty to go outside. However, just because kids are stuck indoors doesn't mean they need to be bored. Here are five fun activities to keep your kids entertained and learning no matter what the forecast looks like.

Build a Robot

Your immediate reaction is probably that building a robot is way too much work, but actually, designing a simple robot isn't hard at all! Your kids can create a robot car, a wigglebot, or another simple machine with little more than a DC motor, batteries, and craft supplies from around the house - no computer chips or programming required. For other fun science experiments you can do at home with your kids, check out this guide from HomeAdvisor.

Dance to YouTube Videos

Being stuck indoors means there is extra energy to burn off, but you don't exactly want a pick-up game of kickball to start in your living room. Give your kids a healthy outlet for their energy and help them meet the CDC-recommended physical activity guidelines by turning on some YouTube dance videos instead. Dancing is also a great way to improve coordination in your little ones! There are a lot of dance videos on YouTube, but Just Dance Kids is a good channel to start with - it includes videos featuring kid-friendly pop songs that will get the whole family moving.

Plan a Road Trip

Even if you don't have any travel plans for the immediate future, planning a road trip not only gives your kids something to look forward to, but it's also a great way to increase their knowledge of geography and map-reading skills. Plug your home address and destination into, and let your kids explore all the cool landmarks and national parks along the way. After they've picked out their route and stops, ask them to recreate it on a paper map so you can quiz their navigational skills.

Give Them an Online Scavenger Hunt

Knowing how to find information online is perhaps the most important skill today's children need to succeed at school and in the workforce. Hone your elementary- and middle-schooler's web surfing skills by sending them on an internet scavenger hunt. Templates from Education World take the work out of picking topics and questions by offering themed scavenger hunts for every month of the year, as well as hunts that are suitable for any time.

Make a Stop-Motion Film

Inspire your kids' inner artist by letting them create their very own stop motion film. There's no need to entrust them with your expensive video camera or spend money on props; kids can shoot a simple film using the camera on a smartphone or tablet and toys they already own. Younger children will have fun making their toys move on screen, and you can add to the challenge for older kids by asking them to build a movie set using LEGOS and write a script for their story.

Is there anything better than getting kids excited about learning? Whether you have a toddler who's just starting to get around or a middle schooler who is starting to explore his passions, these activities have something to offer. And the best part? They all cost next to nothing, so you can put your pennies toward that road trip vacation instead.