Wondering how to keep your young kids occupied during lockdown? Well there’s a very very long list of options once you start thinking about it, or trawling Pinterest! And thankfully most don’t require much prep, or include the prep in the activity itself.

To make it easy and extra fun for you to choose, I’ve created an ‘at home activity inspiration spinning wheel’. And hopefully it removes some of the sibling arguing as well! 😉 For each activity type on the wheel, I’ve listed specific activities to get your started. But the options are endless really. Which is great, because depending on the mood and activity, some can be over in 10mins, while others can go on for days!

So you’ve spun the wheel – now what? Click the activity type you got (listed in alphabetical order below) and jump down to specific activity suggestions. And then come back when you need your next activity inspiration! I know for us, we do about 3-8 activities in a day.


Activity Inspiration

I’ve come up with 16 activity types to keep young kids occupied during lockdown. For each type of activity, there are heaps of options so I’ve just listed some key ones to get you started. A quick google search or look on Pinterest will give you heaps of other ideas! I highly recommend doing at least two lots of reading and exercise activities a day.

And here’s a checklist version of activities to do with young kids at home during lockdown.


1Read, Enjoy a Story


2Exercise, Get Physical

  • Go for a bushwalk along a local track
  • Play balloon tennis
  • Kick a ball around at your local park
  • Ride your bike around the block, or at your local netball courts or empty carpark
  • Set up and run an obstacle course
  • Put the music on and dance
  • Have a handball tournament
  • Fly a kite at a local field
  • Practise kids yoga (Comic Kids is a good one)
  • Go on a nature treasure hunt and do some rock hopping in a nearby bush reserve
  • Turn your hall into a bowling alley
  • Make your own target practice, throwing game
  • Skip with a rope
  • Hold a mini dance party
  • Go on a bear hunt around your local streets (and stick up a teddy bear in your window)
  • Join an online kids exercise class, like City of Parramatta Active Kids Online, P.E. With Joe or GoNoodle
  • Play hopscotch on the footpath
  • Turn a bed into a mini trampoline
  • Throw a frisbee outside
  • Hula hoop

There are SO many options here it’s hard to know where to start… these are the things we like cooking as a family:

  • Bake and/ or decorate biscuits
  • Make funny head bread rolls
  • Bake a cake/ cupcakes
  • Make funny face pancakes
  • Get the kids helping with dinner prep
  • Make crepes
  • Juice oranges
  • Make your own chocolates (melting buttons and pouring into moulds)

4Treasure Hunt

  • Go on a bear hunt
  • Hide objects to find – lollies, toys, coins
  • Colour treasure hunt – see how many objects you can find of a certain colour
  • Alphabet treasure hunt – find one object that starts with each letter of the alphabet
  • Go on a nature scavenger hunt – spotting pre-determined items, ticking off a checklist or creating a journey stick.

5Design, Build

  • Make a cubby house
  • Build the tallest tower, out of Lego, toilet paper rolls, cards
  • Make a Lego castle or boat… or anything else that takes your fancy!
  • Build a maze
  • Blast off a homemade rocket
  • Create a cardboard city
  • Tape the floor into a road network
  • Hold a paper aeroplane comp
  • Make a marble run

6Perform

  • Sing, dance, act – a favourite song, dance or play, or create your own one
  • Play an instrument
  • Create a puppet show (with socks)
  • Make a water xylophone with cups
  • Dress up as favourite character
  • Make a stop motion movie
  • Turn kitchen items and other things into instruments and make a band
  • Take photos, videos of the performances
  • Create a video/ photo journal of your time during lockdown
  • Pretend you are news readers or weather reporters and report on the days events

7Connect

  • Zoom with friends or family
  • Send a letter
  • Drop a note to your neighbour
  • Write a thank you card to front line workers
  • Have a family picnic lunch in your backyard, on the balcony or on the lounge room floor
  • Create a photobook or calendar with your own pictures
  • ‘Camp out’ in your backyard, lounge room or bedroom

8Care for, Nurture

  • Give soft toys a bath
  • Grow a seed in a bag/ jar
  • Water plants
  • Have a teddy bears picnic/ tea party
  • Weed in your garden
  • Draw chalk hearts or rainbows on the path
  • Wash the car
  • Prepare toys, clothes to donate
  • Create a rainbow and put it in your front window
  • Tidy up bedroom
  • Wash the windows (with spray bottle)
  • Write little messages about what you love about other family members or things you are grateful for and stick them up on a wall

9Get Arty – Draw, Colour-In, Paint

  • Turn a cardboard box into an art studio – let the kids climb in with pencils/ crayons/ texta’s and decorate the inside of the box
  • Participate in an online art lesson – we really enjoy drawing along with Art for Kids Hub
  • Reuse items as paint stamps
  • Trace shadows of toys and other objects
  • Colour-in
  • Use marbles to paint
  • Trace favourite book characters using baking paper
  • Create hand/ foot print art
  • Do a leaf rubbing
  • Make a comic book or flip book

  • Mix bi-carb and vinegar together to make a volcano
  • Make bubble snakes – just need old plastic bottle (bottom cut off, old sock and an elastic band and bubble mixture)
  • Count birds in your backyard, local park
  • Conduct mini science experiments
  • Become a palaeontologist with homemade dinosaur eggs
  • Find shapes in the clouds
  • Build the tallest tower with spaghetti and marshmallows
  • Set up a tray of flour and give your kids cookie cutters or vehicles to play in it
  • Make dancing spiders or fishy friends
  • Freeze toys in water in a container and then let the kids chisel them out!

11Craft

So so many options here – really depends on what you have at home to use! This is where you need to make Pinterest your friend 😉

  • Make bright paper flowers
  • Create paper snow flakes
  • Repurpose toilet paper rolls
  • Make paper mache planets
  • Make stain glass windows with contact paper
  • Paint kindness rocks
  • Create some origami

12Learn, Discover Something (New)

  • Tune in to ABC TV Education
  • Learn a new skill – knitting, sewing, changing a tyre
  • Learn how to draw your favourite animal
  • Go on a virtual tour of museums around the world
  • Listen to podcasts, like Short and Curly
  • Learn about another country – dishes, dress, jokes, customs
  • Watch feeding time at a zoo
  • Learn a magic trick

13Games

  • Play a game of memory
  • Make a giant snakes and ladders game on the floor
  • Play Uno and other card games
  • Have a game of Chinese checkers, chess, battleships, monopoly or any other board game
  • Order objects by weight (without weighing them and then check)

14Make from Scratch

  • Make your own homemade butter, pizza dough
  • Make rainbow foam bubbles for the bath
  • Mix up some play dough, slime
  • Make your own fun 😉

15Solve a Puzzle

  • Make your own puzzle by cutting up a picture/ page from magazine
  • Sock match challenge
  • Put a puzzle together
  • Do a find a word/ wordsearch (or make your own)
  • Complete a crossword
  • Do a sudoku puzzle

16Relax, Recharge

We all relax and recharge in different ways. So a few of the activities above will be ways some people relax, but here are a few others.

  • Watch a movie – turn your lounge room into a mini cinema theatre
  • ‘Swim’/ soak in the bath
  • Re-watch favourite tv shows
  • Do some gardening
  • Play a computer game
  • Enjoy a meal together as a family
  • Make a home pamper salon

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