Search our shop

    10 Screen-Free Kids’ Activities to Beat Cabin Fever

    10 Screen-Free Kids’ Activities to Beat Cabin Fever

    If you made it this far into winter without hearing the words “I’m bored,” give yourself a pat on the back! And if you haven’t, don’t fret. Getting through cold and dreary days can be a struggle, especially with kids.

    It’s tempting to rely on a screen for entertainment when you run out of ideas, but before you reach for the remote or tablet, check out these ten simple ideas that beat cabin fever by engaging all the senses as well as young minds and bodies.

    1. Churn it up!

    Little Bins for Little Hands

    Get the kids involved with snack time. Homemade butter is super easy to make and requires nothing more than a jar and some heavy whipping cream.

    If you live with a tiny foodie, you can fancy up your butter with herbs, a pinch of salt, or even honey. The churning step is a lot of fun (add a washed marble to the jar to make it churn up a little quicker), and the result is delicious.

    Check out the whole process – and the science behind it – at Little Bins for Little Hands.

    2. Grow a garden… out of salt.

    Photo © Babble Dabble Do

    Nothing is more magical than waking up to a shimmering collection of crystals that grew overnight.

    Epsom salt crystals mimic frost and can be tinted with watercolor or food coloring. They grow best in the fridge, which makes this a perfect opportunity to discuss how snowflakes form, and why stalactites and stalagmites happen in cool caves.

    All eight easy steps are on Babble Dabble Do.

    3. Combine sound, color, and chemical reactions.

    Photo © Learn ~ Play ~ Imagine

    What’s better than fizzy colorful art? Fizzy colorful art that sounds like a twanging banjo!

    Engage your senses of sight and hearing with this fun (and just a little messy) STEAM project, and learn how baking soda and vinegar react.

    Read all about it at Learn ~ Play ~ Imagine.

    4. Master the fort.

    Photo © Handmade Kids Art

    Nothing says indoor fun more than creating a good pillow fort. Learning to build one can be an exercise in engineering, so pull those cushions off the couch and explore design and structural integrity with the whole family. The building process can be just as fun as curling up inside with a good book and some popcorn.

    Find out more from Hand Made Kids Art.

    5. Make a STEAM bored jar.

    Photo © Left Brain Craft Brain

    Next time you hear those two dreaded words, tell the kids to do the first activity they take out of the bored jar.

    One jar holds hours of educational fun and is fully customizable for your family’s likes and sensory needs.

    Visit Left Brain Craft Brain to start making your jar.

    6. Bring a little winter indoors.

    Photo © Huckleberry Love

    Not the cold, melty stuff – we’re talking about the fluffy white kind of snow that lasts a lot longer and doesn’t leak through your gloves. Mix up a batch of pretend snow and roll some miniature snowmen, make fluffy handprints, or stroll your toys through a winter wonderland.

    Get the two-ingredient recipe at Huckleberry Love.

    7. Discover electromagnetism.

    Photo © Frugal Fun for Boys

    Sounds intimidating, doesn’t it? It turns out building an electromagnetic train is not rocket science, and you only need three items to send one levitating through your living room.

    Frugal Fun for Boys has all the directions.

    8. Become a paper aviation expert.

    Photo © Kids Activities Blog

    Hand-eye coordination, fine and gross muscle skills, and engineering collide – sometimes literally – when you spend an afternoon folding paper airplanes.

    Kids Activities Blog puts a twist on a classic with their challenge to design planes that can fly with coins taped inside. See how much cargo you can carry in your favorite folded flyer.

    9. Fossilize flora and fauna.

    Photo © By Stephanie Lynn

    You’re one simple salt dough recipe away from a paleontological dig in your own home! Not only can you “fossilize” the kids’ favorite toys and dig them out with chisels and brushes, but the impressions left in the dried dough mimic real fossils.

    Dig into the details at By Stephanie Lynn.

    10. Know yourself.

    Know Yourself

    Our very own Adventure Series is stuffed with awesome activities for the whole family, and arrives in your mailbox every month! Say Yes calls it “a great learning activity for the whole family”.

    You can get started with the first Know Yourself adventure, full of experiments that engage all the senses, right here.

    Make sure you follow our Screen-free Fun board on Pinterest to keep track of all these ideas and lots more activities.

    Have a favorite indoor family pastime not listed here? Let us know in a comment!

    Leave a comment (all fields required)

    Comments will be approved before showing up.