50 screen-free indoor play ideas

indoor screen-free activity ideas for kids

When it’s cold and wet outside, it can be easy to resort to the TV and iPad to keep your little monkeys occupied. But we all know screen time isn’t quality time, and they can’t stay glued to the box all winter.

So here’s a bumper line-up of 50 screen-free ideas for crafts, sensory play, activities and creative play to keep the cabin fever at bay. You’re welcome!

  1. Read a story
  2. Put on a magic show
  3. Play charades
  4. Draw a picture
  5. Build a blanket fort
  6. Fill a tub with water and give your plastic toys a bath
  7. Make up a dance routine to your favourite song
  8. Make loom band bracelets
  9. Bake cupcakes or biscuits
  10. Put your dress ups on and put on a play
  11. Have an indoor picnic
  12. Use masking tape to make an indoor racetrack for toy vehicles
  13. Play What’s the Time Mr Wolf?
  14. Use old socks as puppets and put on a puppet show
  15. Cut pictures out of magazines and make a collage
  16. Play a board game
  17. Make a shoebox diorama
  18. Complete a jigsaw puzzle
  19. Make a fairy wand
  20. Play with LEGO
  21. Decorate a pet rock
  22. Play Simon Says
  23. Play shops
  24. Play hide and seek
  25. Go through your old photo albums with the kids
  26. Make homemade play doh
  27. Go indoor bowling (using a soft ball and empty bottles as ‘pins’)
  28. Make a cubby under the dining table
  29. Make jewellery with pasta noodles and string
  30. Have a ‘snowball’ fight using rolled up socks as your snowballs
  31. Go on a treasure hunt (give kids a list or pictures of things to find)
  32. Have a bubble bath
  33. Teach your pet a new trick
  34. Make structures with pipe cleaners and Blu Tak
  35. Play Musical Statues
  36. Make a drum kit with pots, pans and wooden spoons
  37. Tell jokes
  38. Play Sardines
  39. Turn off the lights and have a disco (best with glow sticks!)
  40. Make paper aeroplanes
  41. Play knights and dragons (Mummy is the dragon!)
  42. Do the dishes (kids love the bubbles)
  43. Dress up in Mum and Dad’s clothes and impersonate them
  44. Act out your favourite book
  45. Collect leaves and make leaf crafts
  46. Write and illustrate a book
  47. Play musical chairs
  48. Make and decorate a cardboard box town
  49. Blow up some balloons and play indoor ‘tennis’
  50. Make a letterbox from a shoebox and write/post letters to each other