When my kids are stuck indoors, they can really start to get cranky with nothing to do.
Since rainy days and hurricanes happen quite often in my west central Florida neck of the country, it’s important that I always have some simple (and cheap) supplies on hand to create some indoor fun for kids at the drop of a hat.
Plus, with this virus going around and the possibility of being quarantined to our house to two weeks, I’m gonna need some of the best DIY indoor fun for kids games and activities there are out there!
So I’ve come up with several ways to create indoor fun for kids with deals you can find at your local dollar store. These indoor boredom busters for kids are going to be a hit!
You can grab some of these indoor boredom busters for kids supplies on your next dollar store run and add them to your hurricane supply boxes, your emergency kits or even to your rainy day activities box.
Need game ideas for kids indoor recess for homeschooling or quarantining? These will work great too!
Because you’re gonna need some fun during a hurricane and even after a hurricane if you’ve lost your power.
And since these activities for kids stuck inside are great for any situation, you can use them now for a quarantine too!
Either way, you’ll be prepared to have some cheap and entertaining fun, because saving money is always important!
Let’s dig into these ideas for indoor fun for kids using those dollar store deals!
No, these activities do not involve your kids actually painting. (I know you just let out a sigh of relief there.)
You can actually create indoor fun for kids without having them create huge messes with these indoor boredom busters for kids!
Painters tape is a great thing to have on hand since it comes up easily once you are done using it.
This activity does not involve paint but it will involve lots of tape.
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- Hop Scotch: Roll out some tape on the floor in the pattern of a hopscotch board and label the squares 1-10 with the tape. Find or create a bean bag using a Ziploc baggy and some dry beans or rice. Cover the bag with the tape so it can take some abuse from throwing.
- Paper Airplane Landing Strip: Lay out a road for paper airplanes to land. Create marks in feet to see whose plane landed the farthest.
- Spider, Spider – Don’t Catch My Bug: Create a web out of painters tape either on a wall or in a door frame, then create a ball or “bug” out of the paper. Try to throw your “bug” through the sticky tape web without getting it stuck. Keep points for how many times they fly your “bug” through the web without getting it stuck.
- Zoom-Zoom Town: Create a town and roads and highways using the painter’s tape. The great thing about using this tape is they can create the houses on the walls and the roads on the floors. Seriously, this project alone could take them hours! How fun!
Plastic Shower Curtains
The great thing about these plastic shower curtains is they are only a buck each and can create so much fun during a hurricane.
Plastic shower curtains can be used for so many things including creating large works of art that can involve hours of indoor fun for kids.
Here are a couple of ideas to keep in mind when you pick some shower curtains up from your local dollar store!
- Home Town Map: Create with tape, markers, and stickers your hometown. Mark out your house, school, and other familiar places that your family visits. Add a compass rose so you can play and learn directions. The best part is that it is reusable for another rainy day!
- Tic Tac Toe: Unfold the shower curtain and then divide it up into 9 blocks and then tape the edges of the curtain to your floor so it doesn’t slip. You can use a bean bag, stuffed animals, socks or even shoes to play tic tac toe!
- Dry Erase Marker Canvas: Let your little one’s imagination go wild. For this activity you’ll need the Clear Plastic Shower Curtain, dry erase markers. If you have dark floors, you may need to grab a white shower curtain underneath the clear curtain so your budding artists can see what they are drawing. Just wipe away the drawings with a wet towel to reuse for another day!
Plastic Tubs, Bins, Balls & Cups
Not only are those cute tubs, bins, and baskets great at keeping your kids organized, but they can create hours of indoor fun for kids with a little imagination!
These plastic tubs and bins can let your kids have hours of indoor fun for kids, but let’s start with these great ideas!
- Basketball: Grab a cheap laundry basket, some Command hooks and of course a small ball. Cut the bottom out of the basket to let the ball fall through. Now that’s fun & oh, so cheap!
- Plinko: Gather a bunch of small tubs, bins, tin cans, plastic cups, toilet paper, paper towel tubes, Command hooks, painters tape and small balls like ping pong balls. Start by cutting the holes in the bottoms of the tubs, bins, tin cans, and plastic cups to allow the balls to go through. Then hang the tubs, bins, tin cans, plastic cups, toilet paper, paper towel tubes on the wall in a labyrinth. Throw the ball in the top bin to see which hole it comes out of. The best part is that you can rearrange it anytime you want because it’s all removable!
- Skee Ball: Just like the old carnival game, set up several bins in a row and a cardboard shoot. Label the pins with points and see who can get the most points!
- Plastic Cups: These are not just for stacking! Check out the 7 other ways you can play with plastic cups!
These activities for kids stuck inside are so good and so cheap!
Here are some other ideas to turn everyday items into fun and useful toys to keep the boredom blues away!
Glow Sticks, Necklaces & Flashlights
Glow sticks have to be one of my favorite items from the Dollar store! The make great game ideas for kids indoor recess!
They are so much fun and so cheap and can create loads of indoor fun for kids! Although they may last for only a day, they can still be used for tossing rings after the glow is gone.
Here are some great ideas for indoor fun for kids using glow sticks!
- Fling A Ring: Grab some plastic pots and some glow in the dark necklaces. Turn the pots upside down and make sure the necklaces can go over the cup or pot easily. Label the pots with points and assemble the pots in either a row or spread them out. Tape a line on the floor and have the kids try to fling the necklace ring on the pots. Keep points for how many rings they get! You can also use the bottles from the project above to fling the necklaces on!
- Sky Light So Bright: Using a flashlight, stickers, clear plastic (grab another clear plastic shower curtain if needed) or poster board, cut the plastic or poster board to the size of the flashlight cover. On the clear plastic, you can easily add stickers to create animals shadows, stars, etc. On the poster board, cut out shapes to let the light shine through. You can get creative by punching hole in the poster board in shapes of animals or even in the shapes of constellations!
- Nite Lite Bowling: Using 10 bottles of water or 2-liter bottles, add a small glow stick making sure the tops are closed tight. (Note: I wouldn’t drink the water after the glow stick is in there, reuse an empty bottle of water or 2-liters.) Set up the bowling alley in a hallway and using a small ball, throw the ball at “pins”. Keep points to how many “pins” are knocked down.
- Night Time Tag: Turning the lights down low, play tag with glow light necklaces and bracelets. It’s so fun playing in the dark!
Stickers, Office & Craft Supplies
Don’t pass up the loads of craft supplies and kits that the dollar store already has which are perfect for activities for kids stuck inside. They are great to keep on hand for rainy days for indoor fun for kids and perfect for a quarantine too.
Here are some other ideas”
- Who Am I Game: Using stickers of animals and spoons, add the stickers to the back of the spoon. Keep the animal sticker side down. Then divide the set of animals between whoever is playing. One player at a time asks, Who Am I? And the other players give guesses without saying the name of the animals. After 3 clues if the player cannot name the animal, the play goes to the next player. The player that guesses the most, wins! Note: If the stickers you find stick out farther than the spoon, you can always grab some note cards and then apply the sticker to the note card, and then the note card to the spoon.
- Memory Game: Create your own memory game using stickers, note cards, and markers.
- Colorful Window Clings: Grab several bottles of glue, Kool-Aid packets, and some wax paper. You will want several bottles of glue and different Kool-Aid flavors so you can have different colors. Add one Kool-Aid packet to each bottle and stir well using something like a kabob skewer. Create a pattern such as hearts, animals and other shapes with the glue. Let dry. When they are dry you can use the shapes as window clings.
Googly Eyes, Pool Noodles & Hula Hoops
Who doesn’t love a good ole pool noodle fight! But you can do so much more with them with these game ideas for kid’s indoor recess!
- Limbo Me Noodle: Using painters tape, tape the noodle between to chairs. Let the music go and have fun lowering the noodle till it’s almost on the floor.
- Sword Noodles: Cut a noodle down to make a sword. Wrap grey duck tape around the bottom for a handle.
- Googly Eyed Monsters: Take those googly eyes and create furniture monsters! You can also label the furniture with note cards to practice reading! And you can add them to your hair care bottles too!
- Marble or Car Race Track: Cut a pool noodle in half, making sure to buy one with a wider center hole. Create a track using tape, boxes, and cardboard. See whose marble or car goes the fastest!
- Rip-Riding Noodle Ponies: Create a pony from a pool noodle by bending down a portion of one side. Using twine or a zip tie (both can be purchased from the dollar store), secure the portion down. Add some scrap fabric for hair with a glue gun or tape, add some googly eyes and you have hours or rip-roaring fun!
- Drop The Linguini: A form of tag!
Laughter is the best medicine and helps to reduce stress during stressful times. Make sure to have indoor fun for kids during a hurricane and during your quarantine too!
There’s even 10 games you can play with a Hula Hoop! Now that’s some fun!
Balloons, Beach Balls, String & Jump Rope
Balloons have to be on the list for activities for kids stuck inside! They’re cheap and they make time indoor fun for kids so much fun!
- Fishing For Shapes: Using a plastic bin, stick or wooden spoon, twine, tape, and some cut-out shapes, make a ball out of painters tape sticky side out and attach the ball with twine to the stick. “Fish” for the different shapes and colors.
- Ballon Ping-Pong: Grab a balloon, some craft sticks, and paper plates. Glue the craft sticks to the plates and now you have created a ballon ping-pong paddles. Keep the balloon going and whoever lets the ballon past them, the other player gets a point.
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- Maze of String: This activity may take some time to create, but if time is on your hands – have fun! Take twine and run it all around your house creating a maze. You either have the kids follow to where it starts, hid prizes along the way, or make it so it’s a game where that they have to find the best way to crawl through it to rescue the stuffed animal!
- Ballon Rockets: For this activity, you’ll need balloons, string, plastic straws, and chairs. Tie the string between the chairs, first adding the straw to the string. Then blow up a balloon and tape the balloon to the string with tying the end of the balloon. Bring the balloon to the end of the string and let go!
- Indoor Stuffy Zipline: Using string, tape and a pants hanger, send a stuffy zipping across the living room!
- Jump Rope: Although you’ll need a big room without a low hanging light fixture to do these games indoors, they can be done outdoors or even on a front porch or balcony. Check out these 10 games you can play just with a jump rope!
These game ideas for kid’s indoor recess sure are fun and super cheap to create!
Check out these 11 other game ideas you can use with a balloon or beach ball!
Other Indoor Fun For Kids Ideas From The Dollar Store
Of course these DIY indoor fun for kids wouldn’t be complete with all the other fun things that the dollar store has to offer.
- Paint by number books
- Activity Kits & Books
- Coloring books
- Painting Kits
- Wood Craft Projects
- Card Games
- Science Kits
- Craft Dough & Tools
- Suncatcher Painting Sets
- Spiral Art Sets
- Dry Erase Boards & Markers
- Gemstone Evacuation Kits
- And so much more!
As you can see, all it takes is a little imagination and some deals from the Dollar Store to create hours of indoor fun for kids!
Other Indoor Game Gear you might be able to find for more indoor fun:
- plastic horshoe sets
- portable net
- beach balls
- Nerf balls
- Mini basketball hoops and balls
- Magnetic Darts set
- Bowling sets
You can even make your own hockey stick with cardboard!
You might even be surprised that you have some of these items in your home right now to make for an activities for kids stuck inside kit.
I’ll be stocking up on some of these items to put into my hurricane box for our next hurricane party for sure! Because fun during a hurricane must be planned ahead before the storm hits.
Plus, with these game ideas for kid’s indoor recess will have you saving money instead of buying pricey games or buying movies from the internet.
Make sure your quarantine kit includes these DIY indoor fun for kids ideas!
YOUR TURN: What games do you play indoors on a rainy day? Let me know in the comments below!