Children have so much energy that sometimes it seems they’ll bring the house down if you can’t think of something for them to do. It’s an eternal problem for parents with children of all ages: how can I keep them busy?
Luckily for you, we’ve put together a list of 20 suggestions you might want to try. They vary in terms of what age they work best for, but we’re convinced that they’re all perfect in their own way for keeping your kids busy when it’s raining outside.
1. Make an ordinary fan into a spinning rainbow
Provided they can be easily accessed and are completely unplugged from the electricity, together with your child you can paint the blades of an ordinary household fan different colours. Put it back together, turn on the fan, and see how impressed your little ones are by the whirling rainbow effect!
2. Make some edible plasticine
For this, you need:
- Half a cup of soft, unsalted butter;
- 1 tablespoon of thick cream
- 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract (optional);
- 3-4 cups of powdered sugar
- Food colouring (optional).
Mix the butter and cream together in a food processor. Carefully add the powdered sugar to the mixture, stirring all the time. The mixture should turn into dough which is thick enough to be moulded by your hands. Add the vanilla extract at the end. Knead the dough having sprinkled it with more powdered sugar. Divide it into several parts, adding a drop of food colouring to each one (if you choose not to use food colouring, it works just as well if left white). Now it’s ready to let your child have a go — they can flatten it with a rolling pin, cut out figures and shapes, or just mould it how they want with their hands. And remember — if they decided to take a bite, there’s no danger at all!
3. Set up some swings at home
Provided you take care to make them absolutely secure, you can set up swings for your kids at home just like you would in the back garden. Remember — the chances are your kids will want to sit in them all day long!
4. Make some glow-in-the-dark dough
For this you’ll need:
An ultraviolet lamp;
Vitamin B tablets;
Crush two vitamin B tablets into powder (if they’re in capsule form, simply pour out the contents). Add two cups of flour, four teaspoons of wine stone, 2/3 cup of salt and mix everything together thoroughly. Then add two cups of warm water and two tablespoons of vegetable oil. Stir well until their are no solid grains left in the mixture. Pour the mixture into a saucepan and boil on a medium flame until the mixture takes on a consistency similar to that of plasticine and stops sticking to the pan. Allow it to cool down. Turn of the lights, and turn on the ultraviolet lamp. The plasticine will glow in the dark!
5. Make your own snow
If winter is still a long way off, try making your own snow. All you need to do is mix together corn starch with shaving foam. You can also add a little food colouring to make multi-coloured snow.
6. Make little faces out of various objects
Gather up some buttons, beads, jar and bottle lids, and other similar objects lying around the house, and make little faces out of them with your child. Not only will this keep your child busy, it will stimulate their imagination and a develop their dexterity as well.
7. Make some unusual paints for artwork
You can mix together some hair gel, food colouring, glitter and even sweets to make various unusual kinds of paint. Your children will be even more fascinated than usual by the kinds of things they can draw.
8. Make chocolate cups for sweets or ice cream
All you have to do here is melt down some chocolate, then dip a blown-up balloon into it. Allow the chocolate to cool down and harden, then pop it. Now you have edible bowls!
9. Make a maze out of cardboard boxes