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5 Easy Low-Cost (And Screen-Free!) Ways To Keep Kids Busy While They're Home For Winter Break

Winter break will be here before you know it.

If you don’t have a plan to keep your kids busy, they may be bouncing off the walls and driving you crazy.

Kids have lots of energy and need plenty of time for both active and imaginative play — best done together!

Looking for screen-free ways to keep your kids engaged and entertained while they’re out of school?

Look no further.

Below, we’ve got 5 easy, low-cost, screen-free activities to try with your kids this winter break.

5 Screen-Free Activities to Keep Kids Busy This Winter Break

1. Offload a few tasks from your to-do list and give your kids the chance to earn a little cash.

Is your kid motivated by money? Here’s your chance to encourage an entrepreneurial spirit and teach your kids a lesson in financial literacy. If they’re going to be home, why not spend the time in a way that’s productive? Type up a chore list and assign each task a dollar amount. Let the kids divvy up the chores according to their preference and pay them once you’ve signed off on their work. Want to take it up a notch? Help them set a goal for what they’d like to buy with their earnings and watch the excitement as their savings grows.

Check out these Pinna picks on all things dollars and sense to boost your kids’ money knowledge.

2. Put all those Amazon boxes to good use and let your kids design an epic cardboard city.

Tis the season for last-minute shoppers and Amazon doesn’t disappoint. Thank goodness for Prime shipping. Once you’ve safely stashed away any Christmas gifts, give your kids the boxes and task them with designing a sprawling cardboard community. Make sure they’ve got good scissors, duct tape, and lots of paint and markers available. Then, let them get to work. Sure, you’ll be maneuvering through their cardboard creations for a few weeks. But the fun they’ll have is totally worth it!

Check out these Pinna picks perfect for binge-listening while your kids build and create.

3. Encourage playing outside as much as possible — we could all use the fresh air and vitamin D!

If the winter blues have struck your home, you’re not alone. According to Psychology Today, an estimated 10 million people suffer from SAD — seasonal affective disorder. With it getting dark earlier and earlier, it can be hard to get in the holiday spirit. Give your mood a boost by getting outside with the kids. Wet weather derailing your winter break plans? Don’t despair. Invest in good winter gear (check out secondhand shops for the best deals!) and get outside anyway. Warm up by the fire with a mug of hot cocoa to cap off your outdoor adventures.

Check out these cozy Pinna picks perfect for snuggling under a fuzzy blanket after a day full of play.

4. Unleash your child’s inner artist by providing access to art supplies and the Anytime Art podcast on Pinna.

Do you have a burgeoning Picasso in your midst? If so, you probably have a stocked art cabinet and projects filling every surface of your house. If your kids haven’t unlocked their creative side yet, never fear — winter break is the perfect time to introduce them to art as an exciting (screen free!) pastime. Anytime Art on Pinna is a fun way to get started. There are 10 projects, each with 5 parts taking you from step one to done. Pick one or two to try out this holiday season.

Here are a few more Pinna picks to encourage your young art lover to keep the creativity flowing.

5. Get competitive and host your own family game show.

We all secretly love reality TV! Get your kids involved and pick a competition show to re-enact at home. Are you a family that loves to cook? Maybe you challenge each other to come up with the coolest concoction with only what’s available in the pantry, fridge, and freezer? Or if you guys are an active family, create an obstacle course and see who can make it through the fastest. Want to make everyone giggle? Turn your living room into a stand-up comedy club. Winner is the family member that gets the most laughs. Whatever you choose, spending time together is the real prize.

If you want some more game time inspo, check out these interactive Pinna picks below.

The Wrap-Up

As you can see, there are many screen-free ways to have fun with the family over winter break. The ideas listed above are simple and require no extra money out of pocket or supplies beyond what you already have at home. Whether you choose an activity shown here, or something else entirely, keep in mind that the goal is to spend quality time together and enjoy your holiday season.

We’re all ears!
What are your winter break plans? We’d love to hear from you! Find us on all our social platforms – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest – or email us at

Amy Thetford

Amy Thetford

Amy is a freelance writer and homeschooling mom to her tribe of tiny humans. She's fueled by coffee and the desire to do ALL. THE. THINGS. She blogs about all things motherhood at