3 things to do on a rainy day with young kids.
During long winter days, it can be all too tempting to allow extra television time for your kids to keep everyone happy. Science and art activities are a great way to keep kids busy, active, and sneak in some learning without sitting in front of the television. Here are some rainy day activities for kids to bring science and art together indoors that will encourage your kids to experiment and be a welcome distraction during rainy days.
Once set up, this activity is designed to let your kids learn and experiment on their own so you can take a much needed break or tackle some household chores. Hang a soft or squishy foam ball or plastic ball, such as a Nerf ball, from a ceiling or doorway. This can be done by tying a thin cotton rope, or any other durable string you have, around the ball. Then tie the other end to a hook screwed into the ceiling or doorway. Hang the ball at least one to two feet above the ground. Now you have your wrecking ball.
Give your kids different objects that they can use to create a building under the ball, such as blocks, craft items, or dominoes. Choose items of different weights and sizes so they can experiment with different architectural designs. Then let your kids see if they can knock down their creation with a swing of the wrecking ball. With this activity, your kids will learn some basic physics and architectural design concepts. Depending on the angle and force of the swing, the ball will go in different directions. Depending on the building design, the ball may or may not wreck the structure. Do you need to keep multiple kids entertained and busy? Hang several balls from the ceiling and turn your living room into a construction zone.
On heavy duty cardboard or scraps of wood measuring aboutCredit: Amazon 2 feet by 2 feet, attach various tile pieces using a strong glue or tile cement if you have it. The idea is to create different patterns with different tile shapes, textures, and dimensions. Make several tile templates. Then set out different washable tempera paint colors in cups and have your child paint the tile. When she's done, help her place a large piece of art paper on the painted tile and press gently. Pull up the paper and you have a tile print. With the washable paint, you can wipe off the paint left on the tiles and create another masterpiece. Let your child use as much or as little paint as she wants to see what effect that has on the final creation. This art activity will take some prep work on your part. However, once set up, the tile templates will last for years.
For this indoor rainy day activity for children, you'll need several types of fresh mushrooms and white paper. Use one paper for each mushroom type and write the name of the mushroom on the paper. With your child, break off the stems from the mushrooms, but be careful not to damage the mushroom top. Set this up in a place where you can leave the project undisturbed for about 24 hours. Place the mushroom cap spore side down on the papers and let them sit until the next day. When the time is up, remove the caps and you should have a mushroom spore print. Spray a clear craft paint sealer over the paper to preserve the print.
Examine the prints with your child. Can you find any differences in the spore prints between the different types of mushrooms? Does this catch your child’s interest? Search the internet or head to the library with your child to learn more about mushrooms.
With the wrecking ball and tile art, keep the supplies together in a labeled box when you clean up. This makes it quick and easy to grab and set up the activity on the next rainy day you and your kids need an outlet for pent up energy. You can also use these rainy day activities for kids to stimulate your kids to think of and design their own indoor science and art activities.
More Science for Rainy Days
Buy a selection of science kits to pull out for the rainy days the kids are driving you nuts. Chemistry sets, fingerprint kits, or crime scene investigation kits can keep them and you busy the entire day.