Play at Home Activities
Create your own photo booth by using bed sheets as backdrops. Cut out mustaches, glasses, hair, and other props from construction paper. Then take photos of yourself, the kids, or even your pet.
Have you ever wanted to be a fairy or pirate? Construction worker or famous chef? Veterinarian or princess? Write a short story about what it would be like and then act it out for adults. Look for items around the house to use as costumes and props.
Gather up some mugs, plates, and spoons and set a table for a pretend tea party. Draw an invitation and give it to your grown-up or sibling. Then, get dressed up in your fanciest clothes. Set stuffed animals or dolls on empty chairs. At the tea party, talk to your guests about the imaginary treats you are serving at your tea party. Invisible donuts? Fruit tarts? Your favorite cookie? Ask your guests what treats they like the most.
With nothing more than a little imagination, cardboard boxes can be transformed into forts, spaceships, racecars, and castles. Grab a box, some markers or crayons, construction paper and glue, and let your imagination get to work.
Create your very own ring toss. Decorate a paper plate and paper towel tube. Tape the paper towel tube in the center of the paper plate to create the target. Cut the center out of paper plates and decorate to create rings to toss.
Create bubble foam for endless fun. You’ll need tear-free bubble bath or body wash, water, and food coloring (optional). Put 1/2 cup bubble bath and 1/4 cup water in a bowl. Add a couple of drops of food coloring, if desired. Use a hand mixer to whip up a batches of bubble foam. Make additional batches of various colors. Dump into plastic storage container and let children use construction toys to play with the foam.
Making prints using Play-Doh or clay is easy. First, take a nature walk with your family and collect items such as leaves, flowers, and pine needles. Next, roll Play-Doh or clay out flat. Finally, press the items you found outdoors into the clay, remove it, and carefully cut around your print. What kind of shapes did you create?
Create a sensory bag at home. Grab a freezer bag and fill it with squishy items, such as hair gel, shampoo, shaving cream, colored hair gel, and more. Add items like glitter, buttons, and beads. Use strong tape around the edges of the bag to prevent leakage and enjoy!
Cooked pasta makes for great sensory play, and it gets even more fun when you have a rainbow of colors! Cook pasta on the stove as normal and drain it. Separate pasta into plastic zip bags. Add about 15 to 20 drops of food coloring to each bag along with a few drops of water. Zip the bag and squish to spread the food coloring evenly on the pasta. Let the bags sit for five to ten minutes, then rinse pasta in a strainer and dry with a paper towel. Now it’s time to play! Put pasta in a plastic bin to contain any mess while you play.
Decorate an old wagon to go on new adventures. Create a school bus, pirate ship, or circus wagon using cardboard boxes, tissue paper, crepe paper, cups, paper plates and other materials. What will your wagon look like?
Make an under-the-sea creature. Grab a paper plate, paint or markers, scissors, cupcake liners, glue, a hole punch, and string. First, cut a paper plate in half and paint each piece or design with markers. Then, glue the two halves together along the curved edge. Next, cut off the wavy part of the cupcake liners and glue one end of the liner on the inside of the straight edge to make the tentacles. Finally, use a hole punch to make a hole at the top of the jellyfish and add string to hang it. For added fun, you can also use googly eyes to decorate!
Try making your own puzzle. Gather paper or cardstock, scissors, and something to color with, such as markers, crayons, or colored pencils. First, take a piece of paper or cardstock and create a colorful picture using your utensils, making sure it stretches to the edge of the paper. Then cut your picture into different patterns, directions, and styles. Finally, trade with a family member and try to solve each other's pictures. You can also do this using magazine pages, a printed picture from your computer, and more.
Coloring is a great way to feel relaxed and let out your creative side. Here's an outline of the museum's building that you can color. What do you want the play blocks to look like? How can you reimagine the missing “O” in The Strong’s logo? Share your version of it with us on Facebook or Instagram and we might share it on our social media channels!
Tell your own super space stories with these Star Wars characters. Print, color, and cut out the characters. Attach them to wooden craft sticks or straws and use them to tell an imaginative story. Who is the hero in your story? Who is the villain?
Have a single-pod coffee maker at home? You can create a flower from recycled materials. Take two empty pods and clean them out. Cut the sides of each pod and fold to make petals. Paint the pods with your choice of colors. Once dry, layer the two pods with glue or tape to a colorful piece of paper and attach a pipe cleaner to make a stem. Be sure to add leaves!
You can make a stained-glass window at home. Grab a piece of wax paper or a plastic sheet protector and use a paintbrush to place white school glue on the surface. Place small, square pieces of tissue paper onto the wet glue until it covers the entire surface, leaving no gaps. Brush a final layer of glue all over the tissue paper and let it dry. Finally, carefully peel your tissue paper design away from the surface and hang your new stained glass! For added fun, you can create a frame using construction paper.
Create a fun pencil topper out of pipe cleaners! Wrap a pipe cleaner around the end of a pencil and shape it into something unique. Add googly eyes and a tongue from craft foam to make a snake or make a cute critter by wrapping the pipe cleaner around a pom-pom.
Around the House
Pull out some whisks, measuring cups, muffin pans, and other items used to bake. Make up a crazy muffin recipe and pretend to make it. What flavor muffin did you make? Jelly and pickle muffins? Ranch and apple muffins? How about tuna fish muffins? What crazy recipe would you make?
Become a rainbow wrangler. Go on a hunt around your house to find something for every color of the rainbow. Maybe a red cup? Orange book? Yellow stuffed animal? Gather them together and make a rainbow or color wheel. Take a picture and text or email it to a friend and challenge them to make a rainbow, too.
Take your stuffed animal on an adventure with your very own zip lines. Grab a hanger with clips, a stuffed animal, and string, yarn, or a thin ribbon. First, tie your string, yarn, or thin ribbon to furniture, making sure it creates a downward slope and is taut. Then, clip your stuffed animal to the hanger. Finally, place the hanger at the top of the zip line, let it go, and watch it fly.
Journey on a scavenger hunt through your home. Can you find some of the common items listed in the picture?
Use your set of alphabet blocks to launch a scavenger hunt! Choose a block at random and have a partner find something in the house that starts with the letter on the block. “F” may result in a fork, Frisbee, or toy flamingo. Continue until you have found something for each block.