When you are homeschooling with 3 young children one thing you have to be prepared for is inclement weather. We live in southeast Missouri so our winters are usually cold, summers hot and muggy and we get a decent amount of rain. Sometimes that means the kids... can’t... go... out… Ah!!! What to do with 3 children stuck in a house with extreme excess energy? Here are some of our ideas:
Books, books, and more books. They might be new reading adventures, sticker books or just cool picture books (1,001 Animals comes to mind) but books can be a great remedy to being stuck in the house. Audio-adventures can also be a huge blessing! My voice gets tired and needs a break but those audio-adventures keep on going. I’ve noticed the boys act out the story line while its being portrayed (which can be funny or scary depending, lol).
Creative play which could take the form of Lego buildings or creating a train with the kitchen chairs. You may have to be a little flexible and overlook the tent created from their (clean, sigh…) blankets. My boys think that it is much more fun to build a tent instead of using an actual tent. Go figure...Of course they use the boxes longer than the actual toys too!
Speaking of boxes, its not a bad idea to save some large boxes for a yucky day. Give each kid one and some markers, stickers and their imagination! Be willing to help with cutting out windows and doors. One day my kids made a space ship with their boxes and they were so proud of them!
Bath-time. If your kids are little, bath-time can be a huge event. The other day our boys got goggles and straws (poor kids snorkel) and took an hour bath together, snorkeling. They came up with that idea on their own, and I had to say, it was creative!
When its nasty out it may be the perfect time to teach such skills as cooking. Who could resist learning to make cookies and then cuddling up together on the couch and watching a fun movie together? You might also make salt dough like we did last week and give them the rolling pin and butter knives. It was a mess and I just dumped the lot in the trash when they were done, but it occupied them for at least an hour.
Then of course, play-dough is a tidier option but you don't get the fun of making it. However, it does last a bit longer. I have to admit, play-dough doesn't last long at our house. The 4 year old plays with it so much that it deteriorates within a week usually.
Have a stash of crafts, paints and beads you only get out for these such occasions. They'll be so new and unusual that they'll occupy them for a much longer time. That might be a good time to take a mini-unit study while you're at it! It is raining as I speak and is expected to rain all week and the next, so we're going to do a study on pine trees!
Use your hours wisely! If its too hot in the middle of the day to play outside, make sure you get them and yourself out early to expend some energy and help prevent the indoor grouchies! And if you have a covered porch, use it! I sent the kids out this morning in the pouring rain to ride their bikes (on the nice, dry porch)! It greatly improved their attitudes and mine!
Take a trip! Indoors that is. Go to visit Grama or take a field trip to museums, the library or an indoor play park!
Use the nasty weather time to binge work, whether its doing double duty on Math so you're free on sunny days or cleaning the house with the help of your children. Now might be the perfect time to teach the toddler to help with laundry, the 7 year old to do dishes ect...
As a last resort, save some fun learning app games for those days and let them play/learn for awhile. You might also stockpile great movies to watch then!
So, there's some ideas to help you keep your sanity on days when everyone is stuck inside. Remember this too will pass & the sun will shine again! Thank the Lord!
Be sure & check out all the great ideas at the link below for nasty weather activities!