July 5th, 2012

5 Screen-Free Activities for Rainy Days

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Groovy Green Livin boy in rain

The weather has been strange over the past few days. Intense thunderstorms hit for a few hours and then the sun decides to shine for the rest of the day. During the rainy hours it’s a given that my three boys will beg for screen time and electronics. Sometimes I just don’t have the energy to say no.

The times I stick to my guns and say “no screen time right now” the kids seem to rally and use their creative juices to come up with some pretty fantastic alternatives. The next time a rainy day strikes try one of these activities to help keep boredom and begging for electronics at bay.

Toilet paper tubes marble run

Wondering what to do with those old toilet paper tubes? Save them and reuse them! On a rainy day pull out the bag of tubes and let your kids go crazy. We use masking tape to hold them together. The last marble run went down the stairs and around the family room. After using marbles gets old try using Match Box cars racing down the tubes.

Camp indoors-build a fort

It’s amazing what kids can do with a few blankets, sheets and towels. This never seems to get old even as my kids age. After the fort is constructed hand out a few flashlights and let the fun continue. We also have a pop-up tent that has served us well over the years. The kids love to set it up inside with blankets and pillows and other camping gear.

Talent show

Creating a talent show has been a favorite this summer. The kids make up a dance routine and practice over and over until their dance moves have been perfected. The prep work doesn’t end with the dance routines-they also make tickets, serve refreshments and have their very own MC and DJ. The best part-the adults don’t have to come up with their own routine. We were only asked to dance with the cast members in the finale.

Read together

My boys are 11, 10 and 8 and rain or shine we still like to spend time reading together. We don’t read aloud as much as we used to and most of the board books have been tucked away, but we still manage to find space and read quietly together. I hope this tradition will be around for a long time.

Bake cookies

Nothing helps a rainy day pass by like a batch of chocolate-chip cookies. Baking together encourages team-work and independence. My boys love to cook. They make eggs, french toast, pancakes and muffins. All three are pretty self-sufficient and really do most of the cooking on their own. I’m only needed for supervision and an occasional question, but I get to enjoy the final product!

How do you spend rainy days?

Photo #26195170 © Miredi Fotolia

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6 Responses to “5 Screen-Free Activities for Rainy Days”

  1. Fun ideas! Happy Friday!

  2. I thought I already commented on this post bc I thought it was so awesome. I can always use an extra idea or two. My poor 6 year old has to keep herself occupied if her older sisters are too into reading or otherwise occupied. Have you seen the toilet paper, plastic bag Sky Flyers?

  3. We like to make sculptures out of stuff we have laying around – toilet paper tubes, shoe boxes, yogurt lids etc…My boys have turned “junk” into rockets, cars, monsters…all sorts of cool stuff!

  4. Hi Micaela, some of the best projects come from “junk”. I love the creativity when kids go through the recycle bin and create masterpieces.

  5. Thanks Shane! I haven’t seen the plastic bag Sky Flyers. Tell me more.

  6. Thanks Stephanie!

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About Lori

I’m Lori Popkewitz Alper, a recovering attorney and the Founder of Groovy Green Livin. I like to make noise and stir the pot especially when an issue hits home and effects the health of our families. Join me as I make some noise and share along the way tips for living a green and healthy life. Read more.

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