10 indoor activities for children

Now that the days are getting shorter in the northern hemisphere and the weather is less appealing for outdoor activities, it’s very tempting to give in to children’s TV or computer requests.

I don’t want to make a statement about childhood and „screen time“ in this post, I just would like to give some hints for alternative indoor activities that are not too energy consuming for parents.

Parents often don’t look forward to spending hours with more or less excited children around the house, asking all 5 minutes what they can do. When these long rainy or stormy days start, it’s harder for all of us to get used to spend more time inside and find the way back to what I call the „winter-routine“.

Here are some of my kid’s favourite indoors activities:

1) Craftworks

Craftworks 2


Usually children like to do things with paper, clay, wood, different fabrics etc. If you’re not the crafty sort of parent, there are plenty of sites with instructions about what you need, how to make them etc. or just to get inspired.



Especially before Christmas, the kids can do something to decorate the house or to offer as a gift to family and friends. These activities can take hours, days, weeks to make.

In a few weeks some of us will celebrate Halloween: you can already start with decorations etc. In some european countries we also celebrate Saint Martin (11.11.) where children make a walk in the evening, holding colourful lanterns and singing songs.

2) Audiobooks and music

In general, while doing all sorts of handicrafts, my children like to listen to audiobooks. If your children play instruments: it’s very nice to let them set up a concert – with tickets, a real programm etc. for after dinner. They will be busy for hours!

3) Help cooking

When I’m not too much in a hurry, I like my children to participate in cooking. They all can make pizza, salads, quiches etc.: everything you do in the kitchen is great fun. And your children can exercice a bit of maths doing the measuring.

4) Reading



During this period of the year we really read a lot. We have books in almost every room and our children love to read. We also go regularly to our local public library to get some new “reading-food” (that’s how we call it in German: “Lesefutter”).



5) Write a story

For children who are already a bit older, writing a little story can be very thrilling. They can write a comic or a „novel“, add some pictures (or not). And for those who are not fluently yet, they can illustrate a story and you can help them to add some words.

6) Showtime



My children like to act and often set up a whole role play, sometimes based on books or just invented by themselves. This takes them hours to organize and we often enjoy nice after-dinner shows. Smaller children might enjoy some puppet-plays or dress-up games.

7) Dancing in the house

We all like to dance and hop around from time to time. It’s also fun for mum’s and dad’s and it helps to get rid of the extra energy.

8) Board games

In this time of the year, we often sit down after dinner and play a board game. It’s not only fun for all of us, but it’s also a great opportunity to exercice several skills. – You can also ask your children to invent a board game by themselves, using materials you have in the house.

9) Make a mess



If you don’t mind your house getting a bit messy, your kids could build castles with blankets, cushions etc. or set up an obstacle run or just use all their lego’s or playmobiles or else to “enjoy” them once altogether.

10) Just get bored

I must confess that I like my children to be bored from time to time, because I think they need to learn to figure out by themselves what to do when the input from school, after school, parents etc. ceases. And most of the cases they come up with great ideas. I even experienced that this boredom stops when they’re used to spend more time using their imagination.

These are just a few hints for parents who’s kids don’t know what to do. But I’m sure your children will have lots of ideas to add. Would you like to share them?

Categories: Parenting

Tags: , , , , , , ,

14 replies

  1. Huge fan of #7- we love to dance in my family. Especially in the kitchen before dinner time. It is an excellent way to get the wiggles out!

  2. Oh yes! We also like to dance before dinner. And about the wiggles: it’s the best remedy (well, maybe after trampoline and all sporty outdoor activities). Thanks for sharing.

  3. Dear Ute. How about swimming lessons
    With à Fun teacher doing lots of challenges
    In THE water ?? We hope to see you at SwimKids kind regards Quinten

  4. Fantastic publish, very informative. I ponder why the opposite experts of this sector don’t understand this. You should continue your writing. I’m sure, you’ve a huge readers’ base already!|What’s Happening i’m new to this, I stumbled upon this I have discovered It absolutely useful and it has helped me out loads. I’m hoping to contribute & assist different users like its helped me. Great job.

  5. Love your ideas! I love cooking with my kids and definitely dancing in the living room! Thanks for the great reminders. Sometimes when I’m over-tired, it’s easy to let the TV be on, but engaging them in something more creative is so much more gratifying for all of us! We’ll be doing these things this winter for sure!! I’m now following your blog!

    • Dear Kathy, thanks for following my blog! I’m glad you liked this post. My kids have Half Term Break and we’ll do all these things. But we’ll also going to musea, kid’s theater etc., maybe skating, swimming too. – You’re right: it’s so easy to switch on the TV – especially when we parents are tired. It is much more gratifying to share creative moments with them.

  6. I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post


  1. 5 tips to reduce screen time for children | expatsincebirth
  2. Expats Since Birth | Maternidad en 2 Lenguas Motherhood in 2 Languages
  3. One year expatsincebirth « expatsincebirth

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Ute's Expat Lounge

Coaching and Training for Internationals

Happy Sensitive Kids

For parents of highly sensitive children and those parenting as a highly sensitive person


cultuur - culinair - curieus

The Museum Times

Bringing you the best in museums globally


Third Culture Kid Dating; adults who have spent their developmental years outside their parent's culture

Wine and Cheese (Doodles)

Part aged wisdom, part trashy yumminess, always slightly salted observations about life, love, and living abroad

Prepped & Loaded

College planning without the anxiety

Two Kids Plus Dad

A Blog about a father and his two kids

Introspectively Me

Introspection, musings on life, family and HR.

Rose with Thorns

Hope of recovery for all

Learn a language

Language learning, citizenship, visas and travel

Travel Morgan Travel

Travel addict and chocoholic, an American girl falling in love with the world.


I am a teacher who lives in Tangerang, Indonesia. I love reading, traveling, photographing, writing and of course blogging. This is all about Indonesia especially my surroundings. Enjoy and love it.


Reviews of game apps

Tweetalig opgroeien

a blog by a multilingual expat-since-birth, mum of three, living in the Netherlands and writing about multilingualism, multiculturalism, Third Culture Kids (and Adults), parenting and expat life


Life in Bangladesh and Britain as a writer and former teacher

multilingual parenting - bilingual children

advice for parents in families with more than one language

Explorer Dreams

Expat, explorer, traveller and storyteller

J Simens.com

a blog by a multilingual expat-since-birth, mum of three, living in the Netherlands and writing about multilingualism, multiculturalism, Third Culture Kids (and Adults), parenting and expat life


Life Through the Eyes of a Third Culture Kid

Trilingual Mama

Multilingual, multicultural resources, research, practical tips and real life!

Serendipitous Cookery

Just another WordPress.com site

Our Adventure In Croatia

all the fun of buying and renovating a holiday home abroad....

a blog by a multilingual expat-since-birth, mum of three, living in the Netherlands and writing about multilingualism, multiculturalism, Third Culture Kids (and Adults), parenting and expat life

Bridging Worlds

Adventures between cultures

Little bilingues

French-English bilingual materials for children aged 2 to 6

Naomi Hattaway :: Only two things are required in life. One is to show up and the other is to be kind.

Living the dream... in Paris, France

Living the dream and the reality that goes along with it... The good, the bad & the everyday things that make life interesting in one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Believe in dreams & fear not the realization of them… for anything is possible. Bellanda ®

Outside Looking In

Select thoughts from beyond the Motherland

(autism) comics by suburp

parenting & autism comics

Kiwi Girl attempting Italian

Una piccola ragazza kiwi impara l'italiano

My Sardinian Life

photography, expat tales and short stories from a wandering waitress

American Expatriate

An American expatriate now living in Sombor, Serbia.


Bespoke Crochet and Craft

Claudine Giovannoni

A world citizen & writer: across earth, water, sky...

Positive Parenting Connection

Cooperation Begins with Trust

Libby Stephens - Cross-cultural Transition Consultant - Libby's Blog

a blog by a multilingual expat-since-birth, mum of three, living in the Netherlands and writing about multilingualism, multiculturalism, Third Culture Kids (and Adults), parenting and expat life

Wrong Hands

Cartoons by John Atkinson. ©John Atkinson, Wrong Hands


Art, Travel & Life in Italy & Europe

My Five Romances

Brush up on your Portuguese, French, Romanian, Italian and Spanish, with the help of "Bernardo"

A Path of Light

Some guidance towards joy!

Absolutely The Hague!

A city to Love!

Recycled Interiors: Homes With Heart

Mindful & Sustainable Decorating

The Worlds Within TCK Anthology

young, creative, global

Edward Pitt

Personal thoughts and things I like

Thoughts on Therapy

counselling, hypnotherapy, natural healing etc...


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,301 other followers

%d bloggers like this: