How to Make Staying at Home More Fun

How to Make Staying at Home More Fun

Kelly RupiperKelly Rupiper
Mom of Two
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Keeping kids entertained at home can be hard at the best of times. And in these days of social distancing and staying inside for prolonged periods, even parents with the most lenient screen time rules find themselves searching for things to do. Here are some easy ways to make the most of this unprecedented family time together and keep your kids engaged and occupied.


Even if you typically take a pretty hands-off approach to managing your kids’ playtime, it’s good to have some fun suggestions when they’ve run out of ideas. It’s also nice to have some ideas for creative things you can do as a family to make this time together more enjoyable. There are plenty of fun indoor activities for kids that make use of what you already have around the house, no trip to the store needed.

  • Have a Daytime Bubble Bath: Load up on the bubbles and bath toys, and have your kids sport the bathing suits you got them for spring break. A bubble bath in the middle of the day is an activity instead of a chore!
  • Listen to Podcasts: Many families have e-learning on their plates now with the kids home from school, so much of our kids’ learning is happening via screens. Podcasts are great screen-free entertainment that is also funny and/or educational, and there are many high-quality ones available for all ages.
  • Try a Science Experiment: With simple supplies you likely already have on hand, you can put together a number of easy science experiments for kids. Explore surface tension with milk art, have an instant chemistry lesson with a baking soda volcano, or make your own rock candy for a project that doubles as a sweet treat.
  • Do a Blind Taste Test: Make a secret assortment of foods (like fruit or candy), blindfold your kids and have them try to guess what everything is. This is fun for all ages, and it can be surprisingly tricky!
How to Make Staying at Home More Fun

Making easy homemade desserts!

It has been amazing to see how artists, authors and businesses around the country have generously shared their time and talent to provide unique learning opportunities for our kids. There are many chances every day to tune into virtual events for kids that are both entertaining and educational. This is the perfect time to have your kids explore what is out there and try new things in a low-pressure (and free!) way. Maybe your son or daughter will look back on this time as the first time they discovered their love for watercolor painting, hip hop dance, yoga or creative writing.


When the weeks of staying at home stretch out in front of us with no real end in sight, it can be a challenge to keep one day from feeling exactly like the next. This is a great time to start a new family tradition. They can give us something tangible to get excited about together, and can continue way beyond these days of staying inside.

  • Family Game Night: Dedicate one night every week to family game night, where each family member gets to take turns choosing a board game to play together. To make things more interesting, you can start a challenge where you play each of your board games one time over the course of your days at home. You can even keep a tally of how many games each family member wins!
  • Celebrate Half Birthdays: You don’t need to go all out, but homemade party hats, an easy homemade dessert and the birthday song can make a half birthday really special.
  •                 Weekly Family Meeting: Try holding a once-a-week family meeting where everyone can talk about what went well (and not so well) over the past week and discuss things that will be happening in the next one. This is a great way to have constructive conversations about how things are going at home, and also a chance to make plans for the fun family activities you’ll look forward to in the coming week.


I hope you are staying healthy and safe, and are taking the opportunity to connect with and enjoy your family during this time together.


Kelly RupiperAbout Kelly Rupiper

Kelly Rupiper is a mom of two and lives with her family in San Diego. She is Content Director at Upparent, a website where parents share recommendations with one another for local things to do with kids, family-friendly recipes, and parenting tips and hacks.

View all posts by Kelly Rupiper here.

At home kids activities


11 Comments on “How to Make Staying at Home More Fun”

  1. That was alot of great info and tips . It has been so hard for my grandson who is autistic He has so much energy we just have to get outdoors and go for walks

  2. Teaching cooking and how to be safe doing so is a great idea or even just having them help/participate at some level can make all the difference. Tha bubble bath reminded me of when we would all get together to wash the cars in the driveway. Everyone had fun and could play as well as getting something accomplished.

  3. All great ideas year round. I think I will try the blind tastectestvwith Great nephews and niece when things get better.

  4. Great information when you got kids at home I have a 1, 7, 15 and 16 year old and it is hard to find stuff to do for a 15 and 16 year old because now all they want to do is be on the phone but I will be trying some of these with my kids.

  5. These are all great ideas. I like the blind taste test idea. That would be fun. Tomorrow we are having a birthday party for one of our dogs. He turns 1. We will make party hats and decor then they get to make peanut butter sandwiches for both our dogs. We call it their peanut butter sandwich cake. I ordered them a few new doggie toys so we are all set. This is Coopers first birthday party. Our other dog Reagan is 6 so he’s has had many parties. We always do a doggie birthday because they are our family to plus it keeps everyone busy and in a good mood.

  6. I love all of these ideas, especially blind taste tests, which I never would have thought of, and the family meeting. What a great way to learn about and address kids’ concerns. We are doing more baking than usual, and we had some jigsaw puzzles we “never had time to do,” so we’ve been enjoying those too!

  7. Yes, staying at home could be fun! it can also be hard. So many great ideas available online to keep us occupied.

  8. We have done all the activities mentioned. Making up things to celebrate but it gets repetitive specially when we have a child with special needs whose attention span isn’t great. We try to learn along with our kiddo and we do learn some new things like how tornados are studied. Quite interesting. But wish there was ways to keep us adults entertained so we can have or at least get tricked into thinking we have the energy to do it all over again for the rest of the school year.

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