Fun Indoor Games and Activities for Kids

Fun Indoor Games and Activities for Kids
Quarantine Stay at Home Games and Activities

FUN INDOOR GAMES AND ACTIVITIES FOR KIDS

Staying indoors during playtime shouldn’t always default to screen time, whether it be watching TV or playing a game on a mobile device. While these are still viable options for when going outside is not in the cards, there are plenty of indoor games and activities, and other fun adventures kids can take part in while spending time inside.

While board games and crafts are other great go-to activities, here are some fun ideas where kids can get creative and interact with everyday objects around the house in a whole new way. Staying inside won’t ever be boring again!

Balance Beam

Want to keep your kids entertained for hours? You don’t need a tightrope for this game – just some tape and empty floor space. Gather some colored tape, whether it be crafting tape or scotch tape you’ve colored with a marker, and place strips in straight lines on the floor. Now for the challenge! Can your kids walk a tightrope over these lines without tipping over? Create challenges by adding obstacles (like pillows or soft furniture) or create lines of varying lengths and see how well your kids can balance while they walk in as straight of a line as they can! Tally scores and use a timer to add some more incentive to keep playing. Can your kids beat their previous scores? What’s the record time they can achieve?

Build a Fort

If you know you’re going to be indoors for a while, constructing a fort to last you the duration of your time will be well worth the effort. With your kids, gather materials from around the house, whether they be pillows, blankets, or a combination of both. You can use furniture to help prop up your forts, add comfy padding inside, and station everything either near a TV or in a play area so you can bring other activities inside the fort once it is complete.

Reading and Book-Related Activities

Reading is a go-to indoor activity for kids and adults alike. Whether you read before bedtime or bring a few books into your pillow or blanket fort, there may be ways to make reading a bit more exciting if you have nowhere else to go. Try picking up travel books or books that take place in far-off settings. Personalized Books that make your child the star can be exciting and creative as well. Create snacks and meals that go along with a theme of the book of your child’s choosing. Have your child make additional illustrations for the book of their choice and stick them between the pages for future enjoyment.

Card Games

Whether your kids play Go Fish, a card-matching memory game, or learn a new game entirely, simple card games can help your child’s number and color identification skills as well as their logical reasoning abilities. If you don’t have playing cards, other card sets like Uno, Old Maid, and Blink are great to use too! The great thing about a deck of cards is that you can play multiple games with them depending on your child’s mood. And if they’re feeling extra dextrous, they can also try to build a house of cards! Either way, cards are a great way to pass the time with plenty of options and lots of possibilities.

Indoor Obstacle Course

If your kids are getting antsy, an obstacle course may help them redirect their pent up energy and excitement. Using household furniture, pillows, blankets, toys, hula hoops, exercise balls, mats, and a serious dose of caution, you can create countless different courses for your kids to play through. To make things more interesting, create a bit of a challenge. Create rules for specific pieces of furniture that dictate how your child will get around it. For example, if there is a chair in the obstacle course, kids will have to either walk around it, sit on it on one side before getting off the other side, or walk over it. For items like hula hoops, have your kids hula hoop a specific number of times before moving into the next obstacle.

4 Ways to Make Reading Fun for Special Needs Kids

Activities like reading can do a lot to engage a child’s brain by stimulating their imagination, boosting their cognitive thinking, and critical problem-solving skills, as well as teaching them how to be empathetic or how to understand abstract ideas. Reading can be a challenge for parents of children with learning disabilities and other special needs, and the benefits of reading can be challenging as well. Like any kid with reading, or other activities, it helps to find out what works best for your child and what methods may help engage them to read, encourage them to improve their skills, and to get the most out of the experience overall.

Make it Interactive

Many kids with special needs, especially those on the spectrum, use their brains to understand the world around them in different ways. By stimulating more of your child’s senses in a more visual and tactile manner can help reading come alive for them and engage them in ways that just reading alone may not be able to. Alternatively, some kids respond more to certain types of stimulation than others, too. For instance, some kids may be audible learners and others may be visual learners. Try to appeal to what makes the most sense for them.

Certain activities can be more than just fun interactive things to do in addition to or in conjunction with reading, but they can help play to the particular strengths of kids with special needs. Provide a child with ADHD who learns best by moving by making a game out of it. For a child with Down Syndrome who loves imitating the world around them, recreate stories and scenes with stuffed animals or puppets for an audience of family members.

Find Common Ground

Many kids tend to fixate on certain topics, characters, or things whether they be a character from a cartoon or movie, a hobby like trains, or they may be hyper-focused on a particular subject like outer space. These interests can influence what kinds of toys and activities your child likes to seek out and enjoy, but it can also help you find books that might interest them too.  Identify what appeals to your child on other levels – what kind of toys or activities do they generally enjoy? What are their favorite shows and movies? Looking for books about these things or books that feature certain topics, events, or other features can be what draws your child into reading. If there is a book about something they like and already engage with, reading about it can be another thing they can enjoy as well.

Relevant Struggles

Kids with special needs may struggle with reaching milestones at certain ages, and reading may be one of them. Finding a book that helps kids with these struggles, whether it is a book that helps teach them to read or about a particular subject like potty training or riding a bike, will engage them in new and creative ways. Stories of another child going through the same struggle as them can make children feel empowered and less alone but also more inclined to reading. Reading is an essential life skill, but it can also open kids up to learning new things about the world around them, but most importantly themselves. Books about other topics, subjects and ideas can be helpful, but a book that resonates with your child on a more personal level may be the thing that really gets them hooked on reading or helps them feel more comfortable with themselves.

Finding Role Models

Kids with special needs may struggle with issues revolving around self-image and their own self-confidence, so in addition to finding books about similar struggles, you can also find books about famous people with learning disabilities and other handicaps. This can help kids realize that they can accomplish anything, too, and that their special need or disability does not limit them as much as other people may say they do. You can look for books about people like author, political activist, and lecturer Helen Keller (deaf and blind), Noble Prize-winning geneticist Carol Greider (learning disabilities), film director Steven Spielberg (ADHD), and animal scientist Temple Grandin (autistic spectrum disorder).