Let’s face it; the rain has a pretty bad rep. Aside from being cold and wet, to most people a rainy-day means being stuck indoors. To parents that also means bored, whiney kids, and a very messy house. A little rain doesn’t have to dampen your entire family’s day however. There are an endless number of crafts, activities, and games that you can all do together to make the day a little sunnier. Here are a few suggestions for kids of all ages to enjoy, and parents too.
Toddlers- Young Children
Rainy Day Rainbow Craft
Supplies: Glue, tape (optional), marker, paper plates, safety scissors, pom poms in rainbow colors, blue felt, blue yarn.
Fold a paper plate in half, cutting it along the fold. One plate can make 2 rainbows.
Using the curved end of the paper plate, trace the lines for the rainbow.
Apply glue along each of the lines that you’ve traced.
Press the pom poms onto the glue in the order of a rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple).
Cut the blue felt into raindrop shapes. They don’t all need to be the same sizes. Parents may want to help cutting this part out as it’s a little tricky.
Cut short strips of blue yarn, also in varying sizes.
Turn the rainbow over (to the side without pom poms). Glue on the yarn along the flat side of the plate. (You can also use clear tape).
Once dry, turn the rainbow back over. Glue the raindrops on the end of each piece of yarn.
Let the glue dry completely and display your craft proudly in your home as a reminder that there is a rainbow at the end of even the darkest rainstorms.
Cardboard PT Cruiser
Supplies: One paper towel roll, old box or scrap cardboard (big enough for wheels and tail), 2 straws, paper, scissors, and colored duct tape.
Start out by making the wheels for your car. Taking your scrap cardboard cut 4 circles. Two small circles for the front wheels and two large for the back wheels.
Find the center of each wheel and carefully make a small hole big enough for the straw to fit through. This is for the axle of your car. Do not make the holes too big, you want the straw to fit snugly or your car will wobble.
Make four holes with a hole punch into the paper towel roll. Two towards the back for the rear wheels, and two on the opposite side for the front wheels. Try to make the holes as even as possible and position them where the wheels should sit.
Feed two straws through each set of holes and slide on the wheels. Again, make sure the holes on the wheels and car body are snug but the straw can still turn freely.
Trim the straws down but leave some excess so you can fold the tip down and secure your wheels with tape.
Fold a piece of paper into a cone, trim to size, and secure it to the front of your car. (Optional).
Now it’s time to get creative. Make a tail for your car (any design will do). Paint it, color it, or cover it in duct tape. You can even use a few large pieces of paper or cardboard to make a racetrack to play on.
Plastic Bottle Houses
Supplies: Big plastic bottles or milk cartons (washed out), nail polish remover, skinny and fat permanent markers, box cutter (will need parent assistance), decorations (stickers, stamps, embellishments, etc.)
Most of this craft must be done by an adult, but your children can decorate the houses and of course, enjoy playing with them!
Rinse out and completely dry your bottles. The bigger the bottle, the bigger the house. Use nail polish remover to get the gooey part of the label off completely.
Using a thin permanent marker, draw the doors and windows. Its best to measure and make sure whatever toys will be “living” in the house can fit through the door. Involve your child by asking where on the bottle they would like the windows and doors to be placed. Use a box cutter to cut these out.
Using a larger permanent marker, decoratively outline the windows and doors. Ask your child what colors they would like to use. Repeat the pattern on the insides of the doors and windows as well.
Draw on anything that might be too difficult for your child, like curtains and picture frames, but let them choose what they want and where as well.
Now it is your child’s turn to decorate. They can color their new house, sticker it, or anything they would like. Parents can also help make small furniture out of cardboard or small household items like the tables that come inside pizza boxes.
Scented Bath Bombs
Supplies: 1 cup baking soda, ¼ cup water, 8 drops of essential oil (any scent you prefer), flexible silicone molds, and food dye (optional).
In a large bowl, combine the baking soda and water, stirring constantly. Add water up until the consistency is a thick paste. The mixture should be more dry than wet when you touch it and you can add more baking soda and/or water until it is the right consistency.
Add 8 drops of essential oil. You can also add a few drops of food coloring to make your bath bomb colorful but this part is optional.
Fill the silicone molds with the mixture and pack them in tightly (like a sandcastle). Let it dry completely.
Drying can take up to two days but if you want to finish the product faster you can bake the bath bombs. Bake at 200 degrees for 30-45 minutes and let cool.
Add a couple more drops of essential to boost the scent and enjoy!
Felt Fox Hair Clip
Supplies: Orange and white felt, 3 small seed beads, needle and thread, scissors.
Using the template as an example, cut the pattern for the fox head from the orange felt. You will need two to make one clip. Cut two tear drop shapes for eyes from the white felt.
Sew the white teardrops on one of the fox heads as shown in the picture. Next sew two of the black seed beads onto the tear drops for the pupils. Attach the third bead where the two white tear drops meet to make the nose.
On the other fox head (without the eyes and nose), cut a small slit in the middle and slip the clip through. Leave the side of the clip that goes through your hair on the outside. Make sure the slit you make isn’t too big for the clip to prevent it from falling out easily.
Sew the two fox heads together. The side with the clip will be the bottom half, and the side with the tear drops will be the top. Wear and enjoy.
Custom Message Paintings
Supplies: Blank canvas or large painting paper, paints, brushes, painters tape.
Using the painter’s tape, outline the word, phrase, or name that you would like your painting to display.
Paint any design or pattern of your choosing onto the canvas. You want to get a decent amount of paint around the tape so that your words pop out well.
When dry, carefully remove painter’s tape and display your artwork.
WATERCOLOR Paintings (with no Paint)
Supplies: Blank canvas, sharpies or markers, rubbing alcohol, and a medicine dropper.
Color any design or pattern on your canvas with marker. Don’t worry about being so neat because your image will distort during the next step.
With your eye dropper, apply rubbing alcohol in random spots on your picture. Alcohol takes only a few minutes to dry so you can wait to see how it looks and apply more if desired.
When the alcohol dries it will spread out, causing a watercolor effect on your drawing.
Playing outside isn’t just for sunny weather. With the right rain gear, going outside in the rain can be equally as much fun for all ages. Put on your rain boots and rain coat, grab an umbrella and let your child splash in muddy puddles. Older kids can enjoy a nature walk or just observing a storm as it forms in the sky (bonus science lesson). Sometimes it’s a lot of fun to not worry about staying dry.
Stay tuned for more awesome craft and activity ideas for kids of all ages. No matter the weather, there is always a way for the whole family to have a blast.