Winter break is coming up quick.
Kids will be home and while none of us are above putting a movie on when we need a few quiet moments, we don’t want our kids turning into couch potatoes the whole 2-3 weeks they’re off from school.
With that in mind, here are a whole bunch of activities they (and you!) can do to keep busy, sans screens.
32 ways to entertain your kids - without screens
1. If there's snow, go sledding.
2. Crank up the tunes and have a dance party.
3. Paint a picture.
4. Build a fort and hide out inside with flashlights, snacks, and a good book.
5. Take a walk or head to the park.
6. Bake some holiday treats.
7. Play fetch with Fido.
8. Make cards and deliver them to nursing homes to cheer up lonely residents.
9. Start a family read-aloud.
10. Break out the binoculars and give birdwatching a try.
11. Make a cardboard box creation.
12. Set up an indoor obstacle course. Or play Floor is Lava (my kids are obsessed with this game).
13. Let the kids help you meal plan, shop, and cook. Finicky eaters are much more likely to try something they had a hand in making.
14. Print out a Lego challenge calendar. This is great for any time of year and will get your little one’s creativity flowing.
15. Find a worthy cause and volunteer your time.
16. Find the flashlights and have a shadow puppet show.
17. Plant an indoor herb garden for all the concoctions you're cooking up in the kitchen.
18. Let your kids write letters to faraway family and friends. This is a neat option for homeschool families who are looking to incorporate more writing practice in a fun, organic way.
19. Take a scenic family drive and explore your town.
20. Listen to an audiobook or podcast. (hint hint - check out the amazing selection Pinna’s got to offer!)
21. Take turns telling jokes.
22. Head outside and have a snowball tossing contest (winner gets to pick which podcast or audiobook you listen to over hot chocolate).
23. Host a family talent show and let everyone showcase their coolest tricks.
24. Learn a new handicraft - sewing, cross-stitch, crochet, knot tying, and whittling are all fun options (and pair well with podcast or audiobook listening).
25. If it's warm enough, head outside for a good old-fashioned game of hopscotch.
26. Get kids involved in cleaning and decluttering. Take everyone out for hot cocoa and pastries when you're done.
27. Recruit the neighborhood kids for a game of kickball, tag, or hide-and-go-seek (masks and social distancing encouraged).
28. Break out the board games. Pair them with popcorn and lemonade and make an evening of it.
29. Start a new habit of journaling. This is something even little ones can do by drawing pictures or having a parent write down what they want to say. Fun journal prompts can be found in many places online.
30. Turn off the lights and let your little ones take a glow stick bath (properly supervised, of course). Water play is always a fun way to pass an afternoon.
31. Enjoy a drive-thru Christmas light display.
32. Build a snowman.
There are so many ways to have screen-free fun on winter break.
Use this list or let it be a jumping-off point for you to create your own. Write it down or print it out and keep it on the fridge so you can direct kids there when they inevitably complain about being bored.
We’re all ears!