We have had to stay indoors with weather emergencies, but now with the Coronavirus (COVID19) pandemic knocking at our doors we may have to stay put inside our homes longer than we want. How do we amuse the kiddos? Yes, we have electronics, but this isn’t healthy play for a long period of time. What do we do with a generation that is always in “need” of material objects for entertainment? Parents, we need to get creative!
Play some body games
Encourage the children to sit on the floor and try to roll a ball around their own bodies using one hand and then the other. Challenge them to try the same activity from a kneeling position.
Here’s a skill to see how far you can bend. Give each player a piece of chalk and stand with legs apart on a large sheet of paper. Bending at the waist and stretching, challenge the kids to draw the largest circle possible without falling over. Sounds easy until you try it!
How strong are your toes? Can your kids pick up unsharpened pencils with their toes? It’s a tough task to master, but it can be done.
How about playing turtle and see if you can crawl beneath a mat on your back. Can you go from one place in the room to another without losing your shell? This game is sure to bring on the giggles!
Aim and toss games
Sock basketball can be loads of fun and safe indoors. Roll up balls of socks and aim shots into a plastic clothesbasket. Adjust the distance according to age and skill level. Another variation would be to toss a tennis ball into a trashcan. The last game is one that gives tasty rewards at the end. Let the children toss a large marshmallow in the air and catch it with a cup. Sounds easy - maybe not, but the kids will try their hardest to reap the rewards in eating the marshmallow as the prize.
Here’s an active indoor game that needs skill. Empty a bag of dried lima beans on a table or the floor. Place one bean on the back of the child’s hand and see how many other beans they can pick up with the same hand without the original bean falling off. Keep count of each child’s endeavor.
Just for fun games
With the use of a magnet and paper clips your kids can have a fun competition with this game. Help the children make paper worms with paper clip mouths. Draw a maze on a sheet of paper. Place this on a glass table and encourage the kids to set the worm at the beginning of the maze and use the magnet below the paper and glass to manipulate the worm from the beginning of the maze to the end. Use a stopwatch and time each player to see who can do this quickest.
The traditional egg-on-spoon game is fun. I would suggest plastic eggs for this game. Place the egg on spoons and let the kids move from one point to another. Who can get to their destination without losing the egg?
Jumping for health
The jump rope is one of the oldest childhood games in the world. Yet in our high-tech world, this classic game has all but become a lost relic. Let’s revive the jump rope tradition along with rhymes your kids are sure to enjoy (think of the wonderful exercise they will be accomplishing). Your kids can jump rope singly inside your home or with family members using a larger rope on the patio. Here are several rhyming games that your children can recite as they jump rope:
House for sale
When I move out,
The jumper calls out the name of another player for the last line. That person then begins jumping.
“A” My name is Albert and my wife’s name is Alice.
We grow artichokes and we live in Alabama.
The next jumper must then repeat the rhyme using the letter “B” and fill in “B” words (then continue to “C” and so on). Pity the jumper who gets to “X”!
These active indoor games for kids are great for any kind of cabin fever and especially during our Coronavirus quarantine. Make these activities part of your family quality time fun.
Personal experience as an educator and parent
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