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Stuck indoors with your kids during the COVID-19 pandemic and running out of ways to keep them occupied? School, playdates, family outings, and trips to the playground are off the table, and kids across the country are becoming increasingly restless. As a parent, you’re probably going a little stir crazy yourself! Thankfully, there are numerous budget-friendly activities that you can do with your kids to support their education, encourage physical activity, and keep them happy during long days stuck inside.
Educational Resources Online
There are plenty of resources out there that can help you meet the educational needs of your children while schools are closed. Online, you can find educational books, courses, videos, and games that cater to kids of every age, from toddlers to teens. Verywell Family recommends visiting free websites like Scholastic, National Geographic, PBS Kids, CoolMath, and How Stuff Works to find fun, educational materials for your kids. Online games are also great for keeping kids connected to their friends! If you’re looking to save money, steer clear of costly console games and stick to free apps and inexpensive PC games.
Ensure your kids are equipped with the tools they need to stream educational videos, play games, and get their homework done without interruption. An outdated computer can really slow them down—and may even make it impossible to enjoy certain online games and activities. This could be a great opportunity to treat your kid to a new laptop! To keep things affordable, look for budget-friendly models from companies like Lenovo and remember to search for Lenovo coupon codes to enjoy additional savings and earn some cash back!
When your kids have had enough screen time, break out the board games! These can be surprisingly educational. For example, Monopoly is a fun way to challenge your children’s math skills and teach about money management. Even puzzles have developmental benefits for young kids, building key skills like concentration, spatial awareness, fine-motor skills, memory, and problem-solving.
Unfortunately, new puzzles and board games can be pricey. If you don’t have any games lying around the house, order a couple of cheap card decks online and teach your kids how to play go fish, crazy eights, war, or old maid. Screen-free games like these are excellent collaborative activities for the whole family!
Cooking and Baking
Spending time in the kitchen with your kids is a great way to teach key life skills, such as how to cook and make healthy choices. You can even incorporate some mathematical challenges into your cooking and baking sessions by having your kids multiply or divide recipes, convert units of measurement, and weigh or measure ingredients for you.
Save money on groceries by thinking up new ways to use the items already in your pantry. Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts recommends cooking apps like Allrecipes, BigOven, and Supercook to find recipes based on the ingredients you have available. Or, if you’re feeling brave, and ask your kids to come up with unique ideas for your family meals!
Exercise Games and Activities
Even if you don’t have a backyard, there are many ways for you and your kids to stay active at home. Help your kids burn off pent-up energy by organizing some indoor exercises and active games! If you need some ideas, try jump rope, obstacle courses, wheelbarrow races, dance parties, scavenger hunts, hallway bowling—the list goes on. Look up kid-friendly exercise videos on YouTube or challenge your kids to a clean-up race around the house. Remember to get involved and enjoy some exercise yourself. The best part? All these activities are completely free!
We’re all suffering a bit of cabin fever right now. Kids in particular—who are always on the move and frequently socializing with other children—can have a hard time coping with the long days spent isolated in the house. Try out these educational and entertaining activities and keep looking for new, budget-friendly ways to shake things up. Remember, busy kids, are happy kids!