06 Jan, 2023 Beat rainy day blues with a ‘Rainy Day Party’
Advice & Opinion
By Kathryn Knight
Images: Deposit Photo
When winter settles in and you and your kids feel trapped inside, don’t turn on a movie – make your own entertainment!
On bleak days, hold what my family calls a “Rainy Day Party” (we live in a part of the country with more rain than snow). In the middle of lessons, announce, “Everyone, put your school work away…we’re having a Rainy Day Party!” This impromptu time of fun will add a bit of spark to an otherwise dreary day. Some of the ideas I used with my children were:
- Indoor Adventure Walk. Grab a prop or two and walk through your house reenacting parts of a famous person’s life. Maybe you are Ruth or Naomi headed back to Bethlehem. Maybe you are Brother Andrew smuggling Bibles in a basket. Whoever you choose to be for the adventure, tell a story about them as you head to your destination. Walk around furniture as if it is a deep lake; climb the staircase as if it is a mountain; sneak past “guards” in the hall. Use your imagination to make the adventure tie into the real life person you’ve chosen. Enjoy a snack when you reach your “destination.”
- Categories with a Twist. You have to sacrifice a roll of toilet paper for this game. Everyone sits in a circle and the first person calls out a category (book title, animal, dessert, etc.) and then tosses the TP to someone else. Keep going until the paper tears. The person who catches the torn roll gets to choose the next category. This game is also one of our favorite car games to pass the time on long road trips.
- Entangled. Before your children are up, tie one end of a ball of yarn to a door knob. Walk through the house stringing the yarn as you go. Don’t make it too easy! Kids love to scuttle under tables, over couches and even around piano legs. Another option is to use different colored yarn and a different route for each color. The children can take turns going on the different colored tangled-yarn adventures. You could make finishing be the reward or even put a treat at the end of the yarn.
- Indoor Volleyball. All you need is a couch and several balloons. You can play with volleyball rules and one balloon or make up your own rules such as trying to keep as many balloons in the air as possible.
- Make a Tent or Cave. Use a card table or other furniture and a blanket or two to make a tent and have a read-aloud time inside. There is something extra special about reading aloud when you’re sitting in a tent. Another option is to take all the cushions off your couches and chairs and make a giant cave using the card table as the entrance. If you have several couches, you can have several rooms in your cave.
- Have a Puppet Show. Flip a card table on its side or pin a sheet across a hallway and you have an instant puppet theater. Put on a performance of favorite stories, fables and fairy tales. My kids loved it when the puppets talked to the audience or incorporated them into a story. Don’t have puppets? Socks and paper lunch bags work great! Let everyone – even Mom – give a puppet show and cheer for each performance.
- Clean Out Clutter. Choose a drawer or coat closet and tackle it as a group. Rearrange what belongs, put things away that don’t belong and have bags ready for donations or trash. Take turns telling jokes or stories as you sort.
- Pet Show or Salon. Gather stuffed animals, brush them, dress them up and have a pet show. If your children have animals that can be washed (like plastic Breyer horses), have a grooming day for these toys as you pretend that they are getting ready for a show.
- Play Indoor Games. Hide and Seek or Sardines are fun for everyone. Get out card games and board games and set a timer to switch games to each person’s favorite. Or choose two-person games (Mancala, chess, checkers, Othello, etc.) and when someone wins a game, everyone switches to another table while the winner gets to stay put and defend their title.
Consider a Rainy Day Party as a refreshing time to help everyone be ready to resume studies. Most of all, enjoy playing together. You’ll be surprised at how much some impromptu fun can lift the spirits of everyone involved.
The opinions in this article are specific to its author, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the entire Counter Culture Mom team.
Kathryn Knight, EdD, has homeschooled for over a quarter of a century. Four of her five girls have graduated and Kathryn is loving the new adventure of homeschool with an “only” child. She loves teaching all subjects, especially history, and has made an art of educating her kids with hands-on projects, re-enactments and travel.
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