If you need some inspiration and ideas of things to do in your garden or in a safe open space with the kids whilst you’re at home, then we’ve come up with a great list below. The cold and wet weather is not ideal for getting outside, but these are quick things to do to break up the day (and then come back inside for a warm up and a hot chocolate!)
Go on a bug and mini beast hunt. Search under stones, bricks or dig in the soil to see what you can find. Older children can make a chart recording their findings (name/ size/colour/ no. legs/ wings)
Go cloud spotting
Build a bug house
Make bird feeders and sit quietly watching the birds in your garden, counting the birds
Create wild art using leaves, twigs or anything else you find.
Learn about your plants and trees! Draw a picture. Find the seeds and learn how they spread. Do any animals, birds or mini beasts live there?
Go on a mini garden scavenger hunt. Make it interesting by doing a photo hunt where children have to take a picture of what they find, or draw it
Find some pebbles and stones and decorate or paint them
Get some wax crayons and do some bark or leaf rubbing
Have fun with bubbles
Make a telephone from paper cups – all you need is some string, two cups and a pencil
Try some leaf art, see what designs you can make with different coloured leaves in the garden
Let children chalk on your driveway or patio. A great canvas, and then for the enthusiastic they can wash it off!
Try some water painting. A paintbrush and a pot of water is all you need to get some great designs on fences or patio stones. In the sunshine it will dry quickly so you can go again!
Games in the garden
Make a trail or treasure hunt for your family to follow. Hide items all over the garden for little ones to find. Older children could be given clues or even create clues themselves!
Build an obstacle course
Create an alphabet scavenger hunt
Fly a kite. You could even make one if you don’t have one
Walk like animals – hop, jump, crawl, slither, pause sloth-like or pounce!
Build a den. Use some old sheets, spend as long in outside as you can. Take some books, picnic or toys into your den.
Play ball, catch, football or tig
Put out some cushions or something that children can stand on and play ‘The Floor is Lava’
If you’ve got a dog, get them involved and teach it some new tricks
If you fancy a snack why not try apple bobbing or donuts on a string!
Bubbles. Endless entertainment (try blowing them on a freezing cold morning and watch the bubbles freeze)
Make a mud pie. Messy play for little ones… all you need is water, mud a a few pots for the perfect mud pie.
Activities for when it’s dark
🌌 Attract moths to a torch 🌌 Do some star gazing and learn about constellations 🌌Draw your own constellation pictures 🌌 Going on an evening walk with head torches – there’s a good owl population this year
Educational outdoor activities
🗺Draw a map of your local area or garden 🗺Use a camera or phone to write and photograph a picture story of your outside discoveries
Growing & gardening
🌱Plant some cress heads – we just plant them in empty egg shell halves stuffed with cotton wool or kitchen roll
🌱 Press flowers or blossom 🌱 Plant up some hanging baskets, or pots – create a colourful garden
Have fun even if it’s raining
☔️ Dance in the rain ☔️ Puddle jump ☔️ Get rain suits and wellies on and go out to get wet and muddy
Fun outside beyond your garden
🌲 If you live nearby to a stream then try to build a twig raft with twigs and string 🌲 Play Pooh sticks 🌲 Identify trees 🌲 Spot wildlife – birds, squirrels