We love all the wonderful events and venues that Calgary has to offer! But no matter how adventurous and hardy you are, there are times in Calgary when it’s best to stay home. Whether it’s a snow day or a downpour, a mental health day or even a pandemic like the coronavirus, staying home can be necessary or prudent.
But that doesn’t mean it has to be boring! We live in a day and age where resources and inspiration are at our fingertips, which makes getting creative easier than ever. Browse Pinterest for craft and activity ideas. Research recipe sites for delicious, healing food to make with your families. Listen to podcasts, audiobooks, or dance to your favourite music. Order your groceries online, binge on some Disney+, cuddle up under a blanket fort, and make some memories!
This is simply not in my wheelhouse. The “craft” I do with kids is rolling a snake out of playdough. BUT, even if you’re not crafty, your kids might be! Be creative with common items you have around the house, pull out the tape and glue, and let them go crazy. Need ideas? You’ll find more than you’ll ever need online.
Games and Activities
If your kids are a bit older, board games can fill a lot of time. Blackball the ones like Risk or Monopoly . . . but that’s just my opinion. Play cards, do a big puzzle, print off some new colouring sheets, or try one of the interactive ideas below!
Charades for Young Kids – make your own actions/words, or use the printable cards for young kids.
Spring Mad Lib Printables – get everyone laughing over the funny sentence stories you create together. Plus, it’s educational!
Dice Drawing Games – encourages creativity and silliness, can be played individually or as a group.
Balloon Tennis – make rackets using paper plates and craft sticks and try to keep the balloon off the ground.
Minute to Win it For Kids – recreate the hilarious challenges from this popular game show.
Painter’s Tape Games – 40 games and activities using simple items around the house and a roll of painters tape.
Calgary Public Library – read a book! If you don’t have a paper book to read, check out the resources at the library. They have ebooks and audiobooks, plus resources for shows and read-along books. Try Libby, Kanopy, National Geographic Kids, or TumbleBooks. Don’t have a library card? Sign up online.
Mail Order Mystery – This takes a tiny bit of planning, but it’s so much fun! Your kids will love getting the mail and solving the mystery. This activity is perfect for kids ages 8 – 13.
Kids remember some of the simplest things as being fabulous.
“Mom, remember that time we read a book under the table?”
It doesn’t take much to invest in simple, quality time. Think like a kid, get silly, and enjoy your family!
- Have a costume fashion show and award a prize for most creative creation.
- Read books out loud in the dark with a flashlight – make lots of sound effects and silly voices.
- Bake something you’ve never tried before and let the kids help – or let them do it themselves if they’re old enough.
- Look through old photos and watch family videos
- Go for a walk around the neighbourhood, stopping at a playground to make up obstacle courses for each other.
- Put together a time capsule for you to open together as a family in 10 years.
- Write letters, ask funny questions, create a “question box“
Interactive Screen Time
While I’m sure you know all about the wonders of Netflix and Disney+, maybe you haven’t heard of some of these other options that are great for screen time that is both engaging and productive!
Go Noodle – a free app/website is a great way to burn off the energy in a fun and entertaining way. With silly songs and choreographed dances – any age will enjoy these!
Epic – a paid app that gives your child access to a digital library of current books, quizzes, learning videos and more. You can join for a FREE 30-day trial to see if it’s something your child will like and use!
Art Hub – a website provides endless family-friendly videos that give step-by-step drawing tutorials for kids (and adults!) of all ages.
Drawful on JackBox TV
Once you head online, the options are basically endless!
Of course, you can always use the time to teach a child how to actually fold laundry or clean a bathroom or make their bed. I could go on. But don’t forget to add a little fun to your day, enjoy being together, and make some memories!
Looking for more tips on how to keep your kids occupied during the COVID-19 crisis? Find our best ideas, activities and inspiration here!