Stuck at home with small children during this global crisis might not be utterly different from your everyday life. But when activities are only tentatively open and, family visits are out of bounds- until the jab works its magic- the walls can seem closer every time you look.
You don’t want to complain when other people are worse off than you. But sometimes life can be tricky without seeing your mum friends for a latte and a chat with another adult than your partner. (Remember those?)
Luckily help is at hand. I have compiled a list of indoor and outdoor screen-free activities and play ideas that will delight your kiddos this summer. While you can go to the toilet, or even read a book. Alone.
How to keep kids busy without expensive art supplies
Arts and crafts kids can do by themselves (after printing):
- Draw what makes you happy: anything goes here
- Create art for grandparents, other relatives, elderly neighbors, friends. When you have finished them, you can pop them in the mail (if still allowed wherever you are), or share them during video calls.
- Momtastic posted this cute and easy intro into pointillism for little ones. All you need is:
– a couple of pencils (with erasers!)
– a stamp kit- the washable kinds
– paper or coloring book
- Fingerpainting is one of the most straightforward yet engrossing activities for toddlers. First, put on an old t-shirt of yours or some other old clothes. Place a few newspapers on your floor and cover it with an A3 white sheet and let them at it with non-toxic fingerpaints.
Kids have an unbelievable amount of creativity inside of them. But in case they’re not sure what to do, let them have a look at Karel Appel‘s work. Dutch-born, he co-founded the avant-garde movement Cobra in 1948. His expressive style will appeal to smaller and older kids.
- Fingerpaint with shaving foam or hair mousse. Children love the sensation of shaving foam. If you have some food coloring, you can add this. They can use paper, or they can do it straight on the kitchen island or counter. Bonus: your kitchen will smell lovely afterward.
- Paint rocks: get your children outside to collect a few rocks, preferably flat ones with a smooth surface. Simple acrylic paint will do, and if you have googly eyes and pom-poms lying around the house, even better. Let them make little faces with those.
- Tracing: let your toddler lie on a large sheet of paper. Trace around her. Now you have a picture of herself she can color in.
- Draw rainbows for putting on your window to bring smiles to passers-by.
Keep a stack of recyclables for them to turn empty toilet rolls into Russian dolls, dragons, or monsters with some colored paper, Pritt stick/sellotape, and markers/pens.