40 Creative Indoor Activities for Kids of All Ages

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In the warmer months, it seems to be easier to keep the kids entertained than in the winter where we’re mostly limited to the indoors.  (Because mama just doesn’t do cold.)  We’re hoping these indoor activities for kids will be the cure-all for snow days this winter!

When I’m not forced to think about it, I can come up with lots of creative activity ideas for my kids.

When they’re standing in the kitchen whining about being sooo bored, however, I tend to draw a blank!

And it’s especially important for me to have an arsenal of “things to do when bored” for the kids, since I often work at home.

I’m sure that you have those times in the day that you just gotta get stuff done too.

So my plan this winter is to print out this list of indoor games, crafts and activities for my kids to keep them busy, while I mark some items off my to-do list.

You can receive a printable checklist version of this list (plus access to our entire freebie library) at the end of this post.

These fun and easy indoor activities for kids are perfect for winter or rainy days. Free printable available. #Activities #Kids #Fun #Winter #Indoors #Crafts #Games

Creative Indoor Activities to Keep Kids Busy!

Here are 40 ideas for keeping kids on their toes, unplugged from technology (always a plus!) and stretching those creative muscles.

A few will require planning ahead of time, but most of these activities involve items you probably already have at home.

There are a variety of ideas for all ages listed below.

1|  Make snow ice cream

Or, make ice cream in a bag if you don’t have snow 🙂

2|  Make a fort with chairs and sheets.

Light it up with Christmas lights!

Indoor fort - activity idea

3|  Make homemade playdough.

Create your favorite animals, a playdough family or even a playdough village.

4|  Write a play

Work together with siblings, assign parts and have an after-dinner performance.

5|  Make sock puppets

6|  Bake cookies or a cake

You could also sign them up for online cooking classes!  Check out this one: Kids Cook Real Food.

7|  Write a story

Retell a famous fairytale or write about yourself in the future.

8|  Stacking Cups

See how high you can stack the cups, or make a castle or “igloo” with them.  Stacking cups: Indoor activities for Kids

9|  Make Penny Spinners

Hunt for pennies around the house (or car!) and make these penny spinners.

10|  Movie Night

Make homemade hot chocolate , pop some popcorn and watch a movie together.

11|  Paint a picture

Use craft paint or whatever paint you have on hand.  For younger kids, place a piece of paper inside a gallon size ziplock bag, add some paint and let them “paint” through the plastic for less mess!

12|  Make potato stamps

Look for a variety of things to stamp:  copy paper, newspaper, an old t-shirt, etc.Indoor activities for kids- potato stamping

13|  Make instruments

Use rubberbands, wax paper and toilet paper rolls or other objects (baking pans, tin cans, wooden spoons etc).

14|  Create a sensory bin

Use a plastic shoebox with hidden objects in oats or rice for younger kids to find.

15|  Grow an indoor herb garden

Let kids help plan the dinner menus with their results.

16|  Make some kid-friendly DIY bath bombs

17|  Build a marble run

Use toilet paper rolls, paper cups and duct tape to construct it.

18|  Cut out paper snowflakes to decorate the house.

Check out these free printable templates.

19|  Invest in a Kinetic Sand kit

Now you can play at the beach indoors!  Younger kids can play on top of a sheet on the kitchen floor for less mess.

Kinetic Sand: Indoor Activities for Kids

20|  Act out a scene from your favorite movie.

21|  Make popcorn garland

Pop some microwave popcorn (we like making our own in one of these) and string onto thread with a plastic needle.

22|  Make your own snowglobe

23|  Play charades

24|  Make macaroni necklaces

Color macaroni noodles with markers and string onto yarn.

25|  Make “my favorites” collages

Cut out pictures from magazines of your favorite animals, items with all your favorite colors, or favorite foods, etc and paste on posterboard or a large piece of cardboard.

26|  Play a board game.

27|  Lego hunt & build

Find all the Legos and/or blocks in the house and create the tallest structure possible.

Stacking legos - indoor activities for kids

28|  Play card games together

Check out these 15 easy card game ideas for kids.

29|  Write a letter

Think of an out-of-state relative or friend and practice your letter-writing skills.

30|  Start a journal.

Check out our Free Printable Family Journal!

31|  Make a zoo

Gather all the stuffed animals in the house.  Use laundry baskets, cardboard, string, etc for cages and fences.

32|  Make an indoor obstacle course.

33|  Play dress-up in old Halloween costumes.

34|  Indoor bowling

Make plastic bottle bowling pins and bowl down the hallway with a basketball or bouncy ball.

35|  Make creative costumes

Use newspaper and tape – or cardboard boxes.  Color with markers or crayons.  (Ideas:  dress up as pirates, princesses/knights or animals.)Indoor Activities for Kids - Newspaper Pirate Costume

36|  Make a memory book

For older kids:  organize schoolwork, pictures and artwork you’ve saved from previous years into a scrapbook or binder.

37|  Have a tea party

Wear fancy outfits, make real tea and cookies.

38|  Make some non-toxic slime.

Even better- use natural food coloring. We love this kind.

39|  Go fishing indoors

Use a fishing “pole” (or stick or dowel rod), paperclips and gummy worms.  (Instructions here.)

40|  Make bird seed ornaments

See if you can identify the birds these attract!

Free printable list of activities for kids

For the printable version of this list, simply click on the image below:

free printable list of activities for kids

>>Need more resources?  Try these subscription boxes for kids:

Hello Bible– activities, crafts and a Bible storybook in each box  For ages 5-10.
Kids Reveal Book Box – receive a customized selection of books based on your child’s age and preferences.  
We Craft Box – A prepared box of crafts that 2 children can enjoy together, for ages 3-9 years.

>>For access to all the free printables on our site (and more), see box below:

You might also like:

13 Nature Activities to Get Kids Outside

• 29 Summer Activities for Kids and Families

Awesome Busy Bag Ideas for Church and Outings

7 Apps and Websites that make Great Alternatives to Kids’ YouTube

Bedtime Stories with a Twist (free printable story prompts)

Intentional Family Time: Why It’s Important


Fun indoor kids activities that encourage creativity and imagination at home. Easy, cheap or free ideas for all ages, toddlers through big kids. Free printable list. #Activities #Fun #Indoors #Creative #Kids #Printable #Parenting

Originally published December 15, 2018; last updated 3/12/20.

fun things for kids to do inside when stuck at home
Image with text: 40 tech -free activities for indoor fun

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