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Wallet-Friendly Tips for Keeping Your Kids Entertained and Educated Indoors
When the weather doesn’t cooperate or you’re dealing with closures due to COVID-19, you will need to find ways to keep your kids entertained indoors. For many parents, this is a daunting task. However, with a little imagination, there are countless ways for your kids to have fun at home. Below, find ideas for helping your kids learn and play without having to leave the house.
Fun and Games Indoors
On rainy days, your kids might look forward to getting a little more screen time than usual. However, that’s probably not what you have in mind as a parent. While it’s true that screen time is fine when it’s balanced with other activities, there are many non-screen based pastimes that are more engaging for kids.
Doing a hands-on project is one of the best ways to keep your kids busy. When their minds and hands are engaged, they won’t get distracted and lose interest in the activity right away. Countless craft projects can be made with simple supplies you probably already have around the house, such as glue, scissors, paper, and beads.
Coloring is another activity that can keep anyone busy, even parents. If you have a printer, you can print off your own free coloring pages for kids at home. There are even advanced drawings for adults that let you find your zen while coloring with your kids.
Quiet activities are great, but sometimes you need to burn off some energy indoors. MommyPoppins says setting up an obstacle course, playing balloon ball, or having a dance-off are all perfect ways to get the kids moving indoors.
Keeping Kids Learning Indoors
When you’re spending more time indoors, it can’t all be games. However, it can still be fun. There are countless ways to keep your kids learning with indoor activities. With the right approach, your kids may not realize you’re trying to keep their minds engaged.
Playing with blocks or building with Legos is a great way for kids to hone their fine motor skills while also stretching their creative skills and using spatial reasoning. Putting together puzzles or playing board games can also provide hours of entertainment for your family.
Despite most games being marketed as “fun,” board games are actually incredibly educational. Parenting Science explains that games can encourage kids to detect patterns, think critically, and anticipate different outcomes based on their choices.
If you don’t already have a collection of board games or other educational toys, it’s easy to save money while stocking your game cabinet. Shopping at retailers like Target is one of the best ways to get savings. Rakuten has a great guide that explores how to save at Target, which includes taking advantage of coupons, using cashback offers and applying for a REDcard are just a few ways you can cut your expenses at Target.
Can We Go Outside?
Indoor activities are great, but if you’re stuck inside too long, you’re bound to get cabin fever at some point. In the age of coronavirus, it’s perfectly safe to venture outside if you follow the basic safety precautions for social distancing.
There are mixed opinions on whether it’s necessary to wear masks outdoors. However, it’s best to follow the same rules that you would for indoor spaces: Whenever you’re unable to maintain a distance of at least six feet, the CDC and local government such as the IDPH recommend wearing a mask.
Keep in mind that many parks will have their facilities closed, and things such as playgrounds may be off-limits until pandemic restrictions are lifted. However, activities like going on a secluded nature walk, bike ride, or canoe paddling trip are all great ways to enjoy nature without breaking the rules of social distancing.
Focusing on home-based outdoor activities is a safer bet if you live in a busy area where it’s not possible to avoid outdoor crowds. There are endless ways to keep your kids engaged in the backyard. Try planting a tree seedling, doing a nature-themed scavenger hunt, or playing a game of tin can bowling.
When weather or other circumstances force you to keep the family indoors, it takes a little ingenuity to avoid screens and keep everyone entertained. Playing games, coloring, or doing crafts are all great ideas for passing the time.