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Calm vs chaos - Fun indoor activities for rainy days

Weekly Topic: Fun indoor activities for rainy days

Nov 21, 2023

Living in Britain, we are experts in entertaining our children on rainy days. It has rained almost every day for the last three weeks and our garden is completely saturated. 

There are two approaches to indoor entertainment for children. I like to call this calm versus chaos.

Keep it calm

If you are lucky enough to have children who can play games and occupy themselves without arguing, or complaining about being bored, then I recommend some of the following activities:

- Pictionary Air: This is a great modern version of the classic drawing game. In this version you use an electronic pen and draw in the air. The drawings appear on a smartphone or Smart TV and your team mates have to guess what they are. The new element of using technology is very attractive to children compared to drawing on paper with pen.

Lego Challenges: Set up a quiz game (or another challenge) and take it in turns to get the children to answer questions. Each time they get a correct answer they can choose three pieces from a large pile of Lego. Once the quiz is finished, give them a challenge to make a Lego model (e.g. a car or dinosaur) only using the pieces that they won during the quiz.

Make paper fortune tellers: https://scoutlife.org/hobbies-projects/funstuff/166945/how-to-make-a-paper-fortune-teller/

Embrace the chaos

My children tend to go a bit "stir crazy" when they have been indoors for too long. Rather than let them get up to their own mischief, sometimes it's better to provide them with an activity to harness their energy.

Here are some examples that are popular in my house:

Make a blanket fort: Find a suitable room in the house (usually the living room). Get all the blankets, pillows and small chairs that you can find and then challenge your children to make a fort out of them. Leave them to it and it should occupy them for an hour or so. Keep the dog out of the room!

The floor is lava: The classic game known around the world. Remove all breakable objects and precious heirlooms from the room you are going to use. Provide the children with chairs etc. They are not allowed to touch the floor or stand still, and have to use the furniture. As the game goes on you can remove some of the furniture to make it harder. This is lots of fun but definitely not for people who like a quiet and calm household.

Staircase slide: this is a favourite with my children. It's very simple...they use blankets and mattresses to make a slide down our staircase and then use sleeping bags to slide down it. It quite often ends with some bruises and a few tears from at least one of the children. But we get enough time to have a cup of tea while they are entertaining themselves.

Which approach works better in your household? Calm or chaos?

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The opinions expressed in this column are the author's own and do not reflect the view of Cafetalk.

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