There’s no reason to be bored when there are so many fun things to do with kids on a rainy day. Get started with this huge list of creative games and activities you can play at home.
Wondering What You Can do at Home on a Rainy Day?
Here are 50 Ways to Have Fun When it’s Raining Outside
There’s nothing like the disappointment of getting rained out and having to stay inside because the weather is rough to go outside.
So, what can you do? Sitting around watching TV gets old fast.
Instead, take advantage of this time when everyone is stuck inside and have some fun!
To help you out, I’ve done the brainstorming for you and created this awesome list of rainy day activities and games.
Games for Toddlers
Once babies are up and moving it seems like they always want to be on the move! Rainy days at home with a toddler and no outside time can be long and draining. Try some of these structured games you can play on a rainy day that are fun for kids around 1 to 3 years.
Note: Many of these are quick games, but if your toddler loves them they’ll want to play them over and over!
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Find the Colors Scavenger Hunt
Give your little one a basket (if you can pick up some of these they work great) with one goal in mind – fill it with small toys that all have a particular color. For more fun, pick out some items ahead of time and hide them so it’s really a treasure hunt
The What’s Missing Game
Place three small objects that your toddler knows well on a small tray. Then cover one with a cup and see if your child can remember which one is missing.
King/Queen of the Mountain
Pile up your living room pillows and cushions and let your little ones take turns making it to the top of the pile!
Follow the Leader
This is a fun and easy game you can play on a rainy day that will also get your toddler moving in fun ways. Toddlers already have a tendency to want to imitate an adult, so make it into a game and go all over the house. The more variations to your movements the better! Keeping within your child’s physical abilities, go over and under things. Move your arms in different ways. Hop and gallop. If you have little rugs (or really cute stepping stones like these) you can hop from one to another. Get creative and your toddler will have a ball. Then take turns and let your child be the leader!
Use a soft rubber ball and gently roll, kick, or toss the ball back and forth to your toddler. When I’m playing with kids this age, I always make sure to practice saying “Ready?” before tossing the ball so they learn that they aren’t throwing the ball *at* you, but *to* you. It’s great turn-taking practice for this age.
Build It Up and Knock it Down
Build a tower of blocks then stand back while your little one delights in knocking them all over. These cardboard bricks are perfect for this came because they are so much lighter than wooden bricks and are easy to stack up high. Your toddler will want to play this game over and over!
Games for Preschoolers
Kids this age are learning so much! Here are some fun indoor games that help them practice their new skills
This pack of card games has 6 games that preschoolers love and definitely comes in handy on days when everyone is stuck inside.
Going on a Picnic (In the Rain!)
Take the original “Going on a Picnic” game and add a rain element to it. Players take turns adding on items they would bring on a picnic in the rain, continually adding on to what the previous players have added, until the list gets so long that players can’t remember all the items. For example, first player, “I’m going on a picnic in the rain and bringing an umbrella.” Player two, “I’m going on a picnic in the rain and bringing an umbrella and soggy waffles.” Next player, “I’m going on a picnic in the rain and bringing an umbrella, soggy waffles, and boots.” This can get silly pretty fast.
This is a great card game for preschoolers. If you don’t have a kids Go Fish game (found in this pack), you can still play with a standard deck of 52 cards. When you’re playing with a standard deck, the object is to collect all four of one level. So, a player will ask another player for a “3”. That player then hands over any and all “3”s that they have. When you have four of a kind, you can remove them from your hand and set them down. The first one to run out of cards wins!
This is similar to the color hunt for toddlers, but geared towards preschoolers since they are learning their letter sounds. Outfit your child with a basket and set them off on a hunt to find object that start with a certain letter.
There are a few different variations you can add. Kids can use a device to take photos of the objects instead of collecting them in a basket (we a camera like this for a photo hunt). The second variation is to use the letters in your child’s name for the hunt.
Rainy Day Scavenger Hunt
Use our free printable to play this fun indoor game of finding things you only see when it’s raining. (coming soon)
Everyone loves a freeze dance and it’s a great way to get moving and get the sillies out. Put on some fun music and pause then un-pause the music. When the music freezes, kids must instantly stop dancing and freeze in whatever position they were in.
What’s That Sound?
Players take turns being blindfolded and creating sounds using objects around the house. The blindfolded player(s) must try to guess what the sound is without looking. You can also purchase a Bingo version of the sound game that preschoolers love where you have to match the sound with the picture.
Games for Kids 5 and Up
Games for this age group can be more involved with more challenging tasks that they have to work through. Keep it fun, though, and not so challenging that they give up!
Create a Treasure Hunt with Clues
Hide a treasure and use this simple treasure hunt generator to create challenging clues to guide players to the hiding place. You can play this with one or more kids. With multiple players, I suggest using it as a cooperative game rather than a competition.
This classic kids game never gets old and is perfect for rainy day fun. Set rules ahead of time for which places are off-limits. One player is the seeker and counts while the other players run to find a hiding spot. The seeker must find all the players who are hiding. Kids take turns being seekers.
To change things up a bit, you can play Sardines, which is like a backwards version of hide-and-seek. In this version, one player hides while everyone else seeks. When someone finds the hider, they join in the hiding spot. Play continues until everyone has found the hiding spot and the last person to find it becomes the new hider.
If you’ve got kids who have a flare for the dramatic, then Charades might be a big hit at your house. To play, one person will choose a book title, a movie, a song, a famous person, or a saying to act out. You can choose a theme ahead of time to narrow down the scope. Then the other players try to guess what it is based on the actions of the actor. For more structure, you can get a variety of different packaged Charades games.
This is a deductive reasoning game which requires kids to use creativity and logic to solve the puzzle. One person thinks of a person, place, or thing and tells the other players which category the item is in. The other players must then ask questions in order to figure out what it is. However, they can only ask questions with a “yes” or “no” answer.
For example, “Is it in the house?”, “Is it in the garage?”, “Is it a tool?”, “Is it used for building?” Is it a hammer?”
To win, players must name the item without going over the 20 question limit.
Hangman is great fun to play once kids can start spelling words. Someone chooses a secret word then the other player(s) guess letters until they can figure out what the word is. Each time someone makes a wrong guess, a body part of a person is drawn from hanging gallows, starting with the head. If the entire person is completed before the word is guessed, then the player loses.
It is a bit of a morbid game, but it’s a classic game that kids continue to enjoy. A lighter (probably more appropriate) version can be played using a snowman. Follow the same premise, but add the parts of a snowman with each wrong guess. The goal is to guess the word before the snowman is complete!
Make Me Laugh
The kids play this on car rides all the time. It’s quick, easy, fun, can be played with 2 or more players, and doesn’t require any materials. Kids take turns trying to make each other laugh with silly faces, sounds, jokes, etc. The player who can keep a straight face wins!
Two or more people can play this cooperative drawing game. You’ll need a piece of paper and something to write with. Players take turns creating an impromptu picture, one mark at a time (it can be a large mark or a small one, but once you lift the pencil your turn is finished). Since nobody knows what the other is drawing, the image ends up taking many twists and turns and usually winds up being very silly. If you have a few kids who love drawing, they will love this game.
The Dictionary Game (Fictionary)
If you’ve ever played the game Balderdash, then this game will sound familiar to you. One person (the leader) flips through a dictionary and chooses a word that none of the players has heard before. That person then writes the word and definition on separate sheets of paper, only showing the word to the other players. The other players must then each come up with a definition and write it on a piece of paper. All the definitions are collected and and the leader then reads them all, including the correct definition from the dictionary. With each reading, players vote if they think it is the correct definition. Players earn a point for every vote they get for their made-up definition. Two points are awarded to players who choose the correct definition. And two points are awarded to the leader if nobody chooses the actual definition.
Paper Airplane Races
Have a paper airplane folding competition and have fun awards like, “flies the furthest”, “most loops”, “most creative design”, “fastest flight”.
Active Games for Any Age
Here are five fun rainy day games to play when you need to get the wiggles out and keep kids active!
Play a home version of this popular gymnastics warm-up game that’s also good for strengthening listening skills. You’ll need a large enough area for kids to skip around. Kids listen for the call (fire, tornado, flood, earthquake) while skipping around the room. As soon as you call out the disaster, the kids must stop skipping and get into position (stop-drop-and-roll, spin around in place, jump on top of something, or sit on the floor and bounce). Kids who do the wrong action have to do 10 jumping jacks.
Create an obstacle course where kids must get from point to point without touching the ground.
Use a few rounds of “Simon Says” to get kids moving in big ways. Simon says jog in place, Simon says hop up and down, Simon says flop like a fish, lol. Kids can only move when you start with “Simon Says” or else they are out.
Hands-Off Dance Off
Turn on some music with a good beat and have a dance-a-thon! The last one still dancing wins. But you can’t use your hands to lean on anything to hold yourself up.
Red-Light Green Light
You can play this if you have an area in your house with room to run a bit. A playroom or a hallway would work. You’ll need at least three people, one to be the caller and two to race. The caller and two racers stand at opposite ends of the room and the caller first stands with their back facing the racers. He or she will call, “green light” to let the racers know to start. Shortly after, the caller will call “red light” then spin around. The racers must stop immediately. If the caller catches a racer still moving after calling red light, then that racer must go back to the start. The first one to the caller wins.
Balloon Tennis or Volleyball
All the tennis and volleyball with the speed and intensity of a balloon filled with air! For tennis, you’ll need a blown-up balloon and an easy DIY racket for each kid. To make the racket, tape a paper plate to a ruler or jumbo craft stick. For volleyball, just use your hands! Use duct tape to draw the dividing line between the two sides then play! Score points when you hit the balloon to the other side without the opposing player being able to return it.
Pillow Case Races
Grab some old pillow cases and clear a spot in the living room for an indoor version of potato sack races. Even one child can play this alone by racing against their own time.
Playing Outside in the Rain
I grew up in Florida where we frequently had “sun showers”. If you aren’t familiar, it’s when the weather is actually gorgeous and sunny, but the sky still opens up and it literally starts pouring.
If you didn’t mind the wetness, it was a very exciting event because it meant you could be out in the rain without the worry of dangerous thunder and lightning. And it was warm enough that the rain actually felt great.
You can still have fun the rain even if it’s not an actual sun-shower, just put on your rain jacket and rubber boots, bundle up a bit, and head outside.
Here are a few things you can when it’s raining, but not storming outside, to keep kids active.
Go Outside and Splash in Puddles
Clearly the most obvious, but splashing in puddles can not be left out! It is pure joy for kids of all ages.
Make Watercolor Rain Paintings
Have the kids first paint on a sturdy white paper, like cardstock or watercolor paper. Then place the paintings out in the rain and watch as the drops create splashes and runs down the artwork, creating a whole new look. Only leave the papers outside for a little bit then bring back into the house dry, otherwise the rain could potentially wash all of the paint off!
Hunt for Worms
Worms come to the surface when the ground gets wet, and kids love finding them and playing with them.
Slide Around in Some Mud
A good slippery patch of mud is almost as almost like being on ice. You can slide around, trying not to fall in!
Have a Mud Fight with Some Friends
You can always take your mud sliding to the next level and go all-in with some real mud slinging. This is so fun to do with friends, and I guarantee it will be a memory that lasts forever.
Set Up a Slip-N-Slide
If it’s raining on a warm day, go ahead and get dressed in your bathing suits and put out a Slip-n-Slide! You won’t even need to bother with the hose. (buy on Amazon)
Still need more ideas for what to do when you’re bored and it’s raining?
More Rainy Day Activities
If it’s been raining for days and everyone is starting to get a bit of cabin fever, you might need some more simple activities you can do indoors to keep kids busy. Here are some ways to beat the boredom when you’re starting to go stir crazy:
- Make a Rain Stick
- Make fingerprint art
- Cut up old magazines and make a collage
- Do a puzzle
- Bake cookies
- Play dress-up
- Try to solve a Rubik’s Cube
- Have a picnic in the living room
- Build a Fort
- Set up a tent and have a camp-In
- Make something from a box
- Redecorate a room
- Put on a play
- Put on a talent show
- Make puppets
- Fold origami animals
- Sing Karaoke
- Build something (with Legos, blocks, cards, etc.)
- Conduct an experiment
- Make paper airplanes
- Make homemade play dough
- Have a tea party
Use these ideas the next time the kids need something to do when it’s raining outside!