When you’re faced with a cold, rainy day, it doesn’t mean that you and your child can’t still have a ton of fun. The backyard or neighbourhood park may be off limits, but you can turn your home into a playground that can help your toddler have a blast, be creative, and even learn and grow.
No matter what your child’s interests, you can find the perfect way to keep them engaged and stimulated when the weather keeps them inside. After all, sometimes the most fun days can be cosy days spent at home—especially when you have fun project ideas that can bring you and your little one even closer together.
1. Snuggle Up With a Good Book
Bedtime doesn’t have to be the only storytime in your child’s day. A rainy day stuck indoors is a fantastic chance to let their imagination soar by getting lost in a great book. If your toddler is old enough, you can even have them help you tell the story by trying to read some of the words on their own.
Remember, reading doesn’t have to be passive. You can do funny voices and faces while you read, or even encourage your child to act out the story.
2. Play Some Music
The sound of the raindrops pattering against your windows doesn’t have to be the only thing you hear all day. Take advantage of your inside time by making some beautiful music with your child. Whether you play on real or toy instruments, sing along to the radio, or even just bang on pot lids, it’s easy to start your own band!
Plus, music time isn’t just fun—it’s a great way to help your toddler’s mind grow. Music can help speed up brain development, and can even encourage language and reading skills, as well as help with mind and body coordination.
3. Get Artsy
Looking for a way to help increase your child’s self-confidence, motor skills, and creativity? Getting imaginative with art activities is a wonderful way to encourage all of these elements while also having fun indoors.
You don’t have to be a talented artist to lead your little one on a creative project. Just let loose and enjoy yourself! Finger painting, colouring, making paper plates into fun masks, using potatoes as painting stamps—there are countless ways to help your child express themselves.
4. Have an Indoor Picnic
Is your child (or are you) craving the feeling of being out on a grassy lawn in the sunshine? Set up an indoor picnic and bring all the fun of a lazy, sunny weekend at the park into your home.
Simply lay out an old blanket on your floor (you can even move your furniture out of the way to make room), set up a spread of fun finger foods (like sandwiches, sliced raw vegetables, fruit, juice boxes, and homemade cookies), eat off of paper plates, and make-believe that you’re outside. (Bonus: No ants will show up to join your feast!)
5. Bake Your Favourite Treats Together
Is there anything better than the smell of baked good floating through your home on a chilly, drizzly day? When the weather turns grey, it’s the perfect time for you and your toddler to get busy in the kitchen.
Depending on the age and skill level of your child, they can help you measure, add sprinkles to cookies, or even mix dough by hand (which doubles as a fun sensory activity). From chocolate chip cookies, to marshmallow rice bars, to peanut butter granola balls, the possibilities are endless.
6. Play Dress-Up
One of the best parts of being a kid is letting your imagination run wild—and there may be no better way to do this than playing dress-up. An afternoon inside your home gives your kid the chance to try on their favourite costumes, whether that’s their superhero cape, ballerina costume, or a wacky mismatch of their daily clothes.
You could even set up a fashion show in your living room, letting your child parade down it while you applaud their designer creativity.
7. Plant an Indoor Garden
Just because you can’t go outside doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the wonder of greenery and plant life. Take advantage of the time indoors to have your child help you tend to an indoor garden.
You and your little one can plant bright and colourful flowers, repot growing house plants into bigger pots, or even plant herbs for your kitchen (which doubles as a great way to help your child learn where food comes from). Once your home is full of lush plant life, your child may not even feel like they’re indoors!
8. Stage Some Science Experiments
If you’re looking for a fun, engaging, and educational way to pass the time inside, kid-friendly science experiments are an incredibly enjoyable choice. And don’t worry; you don’t need a ton of specific equipment to turn your kitchen into a lab.
You can simply use rocks and a big glass to study water displacement, use old fizzy drink bottles and glitter to craft a tornado, or raid your pantry and art supplies to create the classic baking soda and vinegar volcano!
9. Put On a Show
Take playtime to a whole new level by helping your child put on a show; this can be even more fun if you have multiple children or if you bring over your kid’s friends for a playdate. You can pretend that your living room or your child’s bedroom is a stage, and have them act out either their favourite story or one they come up with.
There are lots of ways to do this: let your child dress up and play pretend for you, act with them, or even make sock or paper bag puppets and put on a puppet show!
A cold, rainy day can be just as much fun as a sunny day spent outside; sometimes it can even be more enjoyable. Thanks to these simple, easy-to-do activities, you can turn a dull, grey day into one full of wonder, creativity, and play.