It’s April, and while that means that winter is finally coming to an end, it also means that there are more than a few rainy days in store for us. To help you and the kids get through these rainy days, here are five ideas for indoor fun:
1. Build a fort out of pillows, couch cushions, bean bag chairs, blankets, and whatever else you can find in the house. This is a great activity to work on spatial awareness and problem solving. Dragging around cushions and moving heavy furniture out of the way also provides children with heavy work for increased proprioceptive input.
2. Bake and frost cookies. You can use cut-outs to work on hand strength, or you can roll dough balls with two hands to work on bilateral hand coordination. Frosting the cookies is also a great two-handed activity that also works on finger and wrist movements. Adding sprinkles or ball bearings is another way to add fine motor work to this activity.
3. Dance! Turn on your kids’ favorite tunes and move to the music! You can turn it into a game, such as musical chairs or freeze dance, or you can just have the kids make up their own moves. There are also a number of kid-friendly dance and Zumba videos. Dancing provides vestibular and proprioceptive input and works on body awareness, coordination, strength, and endurance.
4. Origami. This paper folding activity works on fine motor and visual motor skills as well as bilateral hand use. These in turn support the development of important skills including dressing, writing, and cutting with scissors. Check out this link for instructions! Most patterns require a square piece of paper, but the size doesn’t matter for the design. Larger squares require less fine motor precision and will be easier to work with as they are folded.
5. Go on a scavenger hunt. This is a great activity that can be adapted in a variety of ways to work on different skills. Try grouping the children into teams to work on social skills. Or you can have the children draw a map or write down clues to work on fine motor skills. Incorporate sensory activities, like shaving cream for tactile input or couch cushions for proprioceptive input. Good hunting!