Party Ideas

12 Ways to Entertain Your Kids While You’re Staying Home

By Megan Price

Most parents aren’t used to being home all day with their little ones. As the nationwide shelter-in-place orders continue, it can be challenging to find more ways to entertain them! We’ve pulled a few ideas together to help you embrace this time together while keeping you sane.

Get moving

If your family is going stir-crazy, it might be time to get everyone up and moving! Shake off the cabin fever with these active ideas.

1. Be a good sport

Help your kids tap into their competitive side and set up an Olympics challenge in the backyard! Discus throws (using Frisbees), obstacle courses, balance beams, or hula hoop contests are great choices for your Backyard Olympics. You can also encourage teamwork with relay races or a team sport like Wiffle ball or kickball. At the end of the challenge, give away small prizes or even have a medal ceremony to bring the festivities to a close!

2. Explore your senses

Younger kiddos are always curious about the world around them. Now’s the time to let them explore! Put on some old clothes, head outside, and prepare to get messy! Set up stations that help kids explore all five senses. Auditory stations can include simple instruments like tambourines or recorders. Check out these recipes for kinetic sand and edible slime! We also love this rainbow foam idea from Fun At Home with Kids. It’s easy to make and allows kiddos to get messy while exploring a fun texture.

3. Put on your dance pants

Is there anything cuter than kids dancing? Have the whole family get their dance pants on and get movin’! Children’s entertainers can help lead fun, silly dances (over video) that will shake off the quarantine blues. Children’s musicians or Kids DJs can add a goofy soundtrack while everyone freestyles! Whether you set it up in your living room or on a backyard projector, there are lots of options for virtual dance parties.

Book Kids DJ Blaze Bell on GigSalad!

Get creative

Explore your inner creativity with your youngsters! We bet you can find these items around the house (or plan ahead with a quick online order).

4. Change up your view

This idea has been circulating on social media lately, and we think it’s the perfect craft for cooped-up kiddos. There’s a great tutorial from Rooted Childhood that gives you all the details on decorating your picture windows or patio doors!

5. Just add glitter

Not only is working on crafts great for little kids’ brains, but it also creates a unique bonding experience for your family! After all, we want to remember this time as something positive – not that “time we watched a lot of TV shows.” Break out that craft box with popsicle sticks, paper plates, glitter, and glue! These 50 Quick and Easy Kids Crafts from Happiness is Homemade is a great place to find some ideas for your family.

6. Pass the paintbrush

If you’d rather let a pro take the reins, you can book an arts and crafts company or painting party. They’ll work with you on the supply list and can lead the tutorial by Skype or other video chat software. A caricaturist can whip up some hilarious portraits of your family and even give some quick lessons on making your own!

Get cozy

After you’ve finished crafting or playing outside, sometimes it’s nice just to cuddle up together! Put on your PJs and pile on the couch with these ideas.

7. Start a book series

Reading with your kids is incredibly beneficial to their cognitive and emotional growth. Take this time to instill a love of books into your little ones! Think about your favorite book series like Harry Potter, The Boxcar Children, The Babysitters’ Club, or Goosebumps. Or look through new series’ together like Magic Tree House, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, or Junie B. Jones. Today’s Parent has a great list to get you started! Whether you read together before bed or gather for storytime in the afternoon, make it an event that your whole family looks forward to.

8. Shake up storytime

If you want to liven up your story hour, consider booking a professional storyteller or puppet show. They can keep kiddos captivated with interesting voices and tales of the high seas, enchanted forests, heroes’ quests, and more! And thanks to technology, they can do it over your favorite video chat service.

9. Have a movie marathon

In our house, we’ve entertained ourselves by watching different series of movies! While the Scream series (our last binge) may not be great for kids, Harry Potter or Pirates of the Caribbean are family-friendly choices. Here’s a comprehensive list of movie series from IMDB for inspiration.

To kick things up a notch, rent an outdoor movie screen or make your own by stringing up a white painter’s canvas (it’s heavier than a sheet and less likely to blow in the wind). Most rented screens come with a projector, or you can buy a decent one for around $100.

Get smart

Many parents have taken on the role of teacher over the past few weeks. If you’re running out of steam, we have some ideas to keep your “students” interested!

10. Nerd out together

Want to wow your kiddos with the mind-blowing powers of science? Gather some household products like baking soda, food coloring, and milk and dive in. PrepScholar has 37 Cool Science Experiments for Kids where they can learn about everything from electricity to biology. If you’d rather leave it to a professional, book a science party, bubble entertainment, or other educational entertainment! Let a real mad scientist work with you on the supply list and then lead your little lab assistants through some cool experiments (via video chat).

Book a virtual bubble party with Hello Showtime on GigSalad!

11. Take a nature walk

As simple as it seems, we forget that there are lots of neat learning experiences in our own neighborhoods. First, let your kiddos create a nature journal like this one from Great Stems! Then take daily walks, stopping to observe things like tree species, pretty flowers, bees, butterflies, and more. Help your youngsters record what they see in their journals for a sweet keepsake (and learning tool).

12. Bring history to life

Knowing about our past is so important but reading about it in a book can start to get dull – especially for kiddos who are pent up most of the time these days! Help bring history to life by booking a historical character that coincides with your lessons. Whether it’s Ben Franklin, a Civil War soldier, or The Unsinkable Molly Brown – these fascinating characters can share their life story via the screen.

Book Titanic Captain E.J. Smith on GigSalad!

No matter how you spend your time with your kiddos, just enjoy it. You may never get this much time together again! So laugh, cuddle, dance, paint, read… make memories.

Want to book something awesome for your virtual event? Find the best on GigSalad.

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