It might be chucking it down outside, but don’t let the wet weather rain on your parade especially with these rainy day activities. From indoor crafts and outdoor adventures to the best child-friendly hotspots in London, we’ve got 10 ideas for keeping cabin fever at bay with help from some of the people who know best. And what’s more – there’s not an iPad in sight.
1. Go on a scavenger hunt
Kids love a mission, so get them kitted out in wellies and waterproofs and head to your nearest green space for a scavenger hunt. “Get them to find snails and earthworms, their reflection in a puddle or a wet cobweb,” suggests Kate Williams, author of the Crafts on Sea blog.
Nature’s spoils can be useful craft materials: “Conkers, pine cones and colourful leaves can be put to good use back home. A paper plate wreath is an easy one: cut out the middle of the plate, paint it green and adorn with leaves.”
2. Make your own playdough
Kids will love making their own playdough—plus, it lasts longer than the shop bought stuff (six months, in an airtight container).
Put 360ml water in a pan and bring to the boil. Meanwhile, mix 250g plain flour with 150g salt, 2 tbsp vegetable oil and 2 tbsp cream of tartar (from the supermarket baking aisle).
Add a few drops of food colouring, vanilla essence and the dry ingredients to the water, stirring until it forms a sticky dough. Knead vigorously for a couple of minutes until all the stickiness has gone, then let them get stuck in!
3. Paint with rain
“Take a thick piece of paper and get your child to decorate it with splodges of watercolour paint or food colouring,” suggests Laura from Little Button Diaries craft blog.
“Place the paper on a tray and put it outside in the rain. Watch as the raindrops mingle with the colours to transform their splodges into beautiful art. But don’t leave it out there too long—think splashy, not soggy.”
4. Visit the V&A Museum of Childhood
Once a little-known diamond in the east London rough, now the V&A Museum of Childhood is planted firmly on the map.
Browse the UK’s national collection of childhood objects, where the earliest surviving rocking horse from around 1605 sits alongside 20th century cult classics (remember Tiny Tears, the doll that wees?) Or try the drop-in activities, from arts and crafts sessions to interactive storytelling.
With all these great ideas you’ll be constantly refreshing your BBC Weather app, hoping for a thunder storm. We’ll have more great ideas soon…