By Guest Blogger Courtney Tucker

I don’t know about you, but when the holiday break starts to wind down my kids get antsy. It’s like we can’t get all their extra energy out. I’ve been thinking a lot about this and so I compiled a list of boredom busters (that are also great for rainy and snow days). My ideas are shared below, but be sure to also check TMoM’s blog “99 Ways to Reply To ‘I’m Bored‘” for more ideas – especially for the older kids!.

X Marks the Spot

My daughter has a game she likes to play. She’ll get my husband to draw a “map” of our house on a dry erase board and then he hides an object somewhere in the house. He marks an X on the location of the object on the map and we see how fast she can find it. This requires her to demonstrate map-reading skills, including following directions, judging distances, and reading a legend (if he includes one).  We actually haven’t played this one in a while, but I saw something recently that reminded me of it so we might hit up the Target dollar bin for some prizes and break out the dry erase board again soon.

Memory Tray

I place 10 to 20 various objects that can be found around the house on a tray and I give my daughter one minute to look at the tray. Then I cover it up and see how many of the objects she can list back to me. Next we switch. She takes a turn finding the objects around the house and puts them on the tray for me to look at while she times me. I list back to her as many as I can remember.  This tests our memory and my daughter gets to practice her time-keeping skills. Not surprisingly, she often remembers more of the objects than I do!

Cleaner Than Play Dough

As far as boredom busters, this one really works best for preschoolers, but I will often give my four-year-old a squirt or two of shaving cream and let her play with it on our island bar.  It’s very easy to clean up with only a wet rag and as an added bonus, she smells lovely afterward. If it’s nice enough outside – or if you have a large space for messy play – you could also consider Shaving Cream Painting.

Thumbprint Art

Grab an ink pad and make thumbprint art. Kids of any age can do this if they have a little imagination.  There are lots of sites online with great templates and ideas, like this site.  Plus, thumbprint art makes a great gift in cards, bookmarks, and on gift wrap!

Kids in the Kitchen

Rainy (and snow) days are some of the best days to whip up a kid-friendly recipe. There are lots of ideas all around the internet but most of our successes have been making things that we would already typically be making and just adding a kid-friendly aspect to it, like cutting the cheese into shapes for a pizza. TMoM has more ideas for fun recipes for kids to try here as well.

What additional boredom busters can you add as a comment below?

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