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10 Rainy Day Activities Inside and Out

Brighten up a gray day with these fun ideas.

If heading out into the rain and braving it for some fun is your style, try any of these playful ideas for a rainy day with the kids — inside or out!

Make a Hallway Obstacle Course

We’ve all seen movies where motion-sensor lasers set off an alarm. Use your imagination and create that same scene in your hallways. Tape to the walls with wall-safe tape whatever household items you have lying around. Streamers work great, but toilet paper is an option for times you don’t want to head to the store for supplies. Tape the material on either side of the walls to create barriers you have to over-under to get around. The tricky part? Making sure none of it falls down! This activity is great for two reasons: creating the obstacles is a fun challenge and easy-peasy cleanup.

Make a Bet

Ever wonder how much rain you’re going to get? With the rainy days ahead, have your children guess how much rain will fall in a day. Find a clear container, label it at the ounce marks (Mason jars work great because they’re already marked) place it on a table or somewhere secure and won’t blow away. At the end of the day, see whose estimate was closest and reward them with their favorite ice cream, movie, or other favorite treat.

Super Hydrophobic Coating

It sounds like a mouthful, but it’s awesome. If you know rain is in the forecast, get out your stencils and start creating. Hydrophobic coating (like NeverWet), when painted onto concrete surfaces like your sidewalk or driveway, will appear dry when it rains. Aside from being extremely cool, hydrophobic coating is invisible when it’s dry out. Make rain-coated tic-tac-toe boards, a hop-scotch court, a foursquare, or fun messages to take pictures of, this will amaze your kids (and your neighbors) and be a fun place to play in the rain.

Go Rock Climbing

Take the excitement of the outdoors and bring it inside at a rock gym. Not only can you and your kids exercise safely, rock-climbing provides an outdoor feel when the weather blunders outside. Philly Rock Gyms have several convenient locations and most offer climbing shoe and helmet rentals.

Butcher Paper

Remember the days in elementary school when the butcher paper was rolled out for artistic murals? You too, can create these with your kids on a rainy day. Roll out the butcher paper on a safe surface and get your drawing on. It’s a fun and different spin on artwork. Let them create worlds they wouldn’t otherwise create. Put a wet spin on it with watercolors.

Water Marbles

Fill a water receptacle with water marbles (like these) and add water. Wait a few hours and let the marbles plump up. Watch your children’s eyes fill with disbelief as they put their hands in the container and feel them. They’ll flip when they notice all the marbles are still there, but are nearly invisible. The perk? You can use them for decorations in vases. 

Marble Race

Speaking of marbles, why not have a marble race? Build a race track from a cut-in-half pool noodle or tape together toilet paper or paper towel rolls, or other materials. Make a finish-line pool for the marbles to fall into for easy clean-up and no slips later. Take turns racing against each other to see whose marble gets to the finish line first. 

Indoor Slide

If your online shopping is just as out-of-hand as ours is and you have a bunch of boxes lying around the house, you can make an indoor slide. Break down the box and allow the kids to slide down the stairs (if yours are carpeted). This needs a fair amount of parental supervision, but can be extremely fun when you keep it safe.

Rain Art

Nature and art collide in this fun rainy-day activity. Using watercolor paints (oil paints won’t work as well), have the kids create artwork indoors. Create whatever they want, from abstract shapes to landscapes, but it has to be done quickly. While the paint is still wet, take the paintings outside under the raindrops. Have them watch as the rain changes their artwork into something different. 

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