Rainy days can often pose a challenge when you have an active toddler at home. The allure of outdoor adventures may be temporarily dampened, but fear not! Rainy days offer a unique opportunity for indoor fun, creativity, and quality bonding time with your little one. In this blog post, we’ve compiled a list of 30 delightful activities to keep your toddler happily engaged when the weather has you cooped up inside. From imaginative play to arts and crafts, there’s a rainy day adventure awaiting you and your toddler. Let’s turn those raindrops into opportunities for laughter and cherished memories.
So, grab your toddler’s hand, and let’s explore a world of rainy day wonders together. Whether you’re a stay-at-home parent, a caregiver, or just seeking some indoor inspiration, these activities are sure to brighten up even the gloomiest of days. Let the rainy day adventures begin!
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We are enjoying the remnants of Ophelia here on Long Island. It’s been raining for 4 days straight! The ground is mush, and I can’t remember what the sun feels like. But…we haven’t been bored once!
Baby M (my 3 year old) and I covet rainy days. We both have our trusted rain boots and big rain coats. On days like today, our backyard becomes a rainforest. We pretend we’re sailors on a ship during a storm. We jump in muddy puddles (big Peppa Pig fans) and drink hot cocoa after.
That’s why my first point is….
The Best Thing to Do With a Toddler on a Rainy Day is to Go Outside
Hey there, fellow parents and adventurous souls, hear me out! We’ve all heard the saying, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing,” and when it comes to rainy days, that sentiment couldn’t be truer. As a mom to my spirited 3-year-old, Baby M, I’ve learned that rain can be an incredible playground, full of lessons and memories waiting to happen.
Let Nature Be the Teacher
When the raindrops start falling, it’s the perfect time to show your kids that nature has something incredible to offer, no matter the weather. By encouraging your little ones to explore their own backyard in the rain, you’re letting them in on a secret: there’s a world of wonders right outside their door.
Building Shelters and Funneling Rain
One of the coolest rainy day activities? Building makeshift shelters. All you need are some old blankets or sheets, a few sturdy sticks, and a dash of creativity. Not only is it a fantastic bonding experience, but it also teaches problem-solving and basic engineering skills.
Plus, when you and your kids huddle under your newly constructed shelter as the rain taps its rhythmic beat above, you’ll be in awe of what you can create together.
Engage the Senses
Rainy days are an invitation to engage the senses like never before. Listen closely as the rain distorts sounds, making everything feel magical and new.
Feel the raindrops on your skin—each one is a tiny miracle of nature. And, oh, the mud! Let your kids revel in the sensation of mud squishing beneath their feet, an experience that connects them with the Earth in a profound way.
Our new thing has been tasting the rain drops that gather at the end of our pine tree!
So, the next time the rain starts to fall, don’t rush to close the blinds and huddle indoors. Instead, grab those rain boots, throw on some raincoats, and head outside with your little ones. Let them discover the wonders of a rainy day, and in doing so, you’ll be creating cherished memories and instilling a sense of adventure that will last a lifetime.
What NOT to Do With a Toddler on a Rainy Day
Hey, I get it. Rainy days can make us stir-crazy, and the temptation to head to the nearest play place or children’s museum can be strong. But, here’s the deal: I’ve learned that rainy days and crowded indoor play areas aren’t the best combo, and here’s why.
Packed Play Places and Museums
Let’s talk about those indoor play places and children’s museums. On rainy days, they’re often packed to the rafters. It’s like the whole town had the same idea, right? But, here’s the issue: crowded spaces and toddlers aren’t always a match made in heaven.
The Germ Factor
You know what else happens when you cram lots of kids into one place? Germs, and lots of them. Trust me, I’m all for boosting my kid’s immune system, but there’s a limit. Rainy days bring out the sniffles, and when you’ve got a room full of little ones sneezing and coughing, it’s like a petri dish for viruses.
Save Those Adventures for Sunnier Days
So, what do I do instead? I save those play place and children’s museum adventures for sunnier days when the crowds thin out, and the germ situation isn’t quite so intense. Don’t get me wrong; I’m all for getting my kid out and about in all kinds of weather. Rainy days, sunny days, we embrace them all. But sometimes, it’s just smarter to wait for the storm to pass—both literally and figuratively.
Remember, there’s no need to feel guilty about skipping the indoor chaos on a rainy day. There are plenty of fun and educational rainy day activities you can enjoy at home. So, when the rain is pouring down, stay cozy indoors, and save those epic indoor adventures for a drier day. Your toddler’s health and your sanity will thank you.
I do give the library a pass, because it’s usually pretty quiet, no matter what day it is.
Our Rain Toys
Here’s what we use in the rain (or shine)!
Free Places to Go with Babies or Toddlers
Did you know that you’re probably sleeping on so many free places to take your little one? As a mom on a budget, I’ve found multiple places to take my daughter to get out of the house. These include the pet store (aka the free zoo), the library, and museums (not the germy kid kind).
30 Things to Do with Toddlers on a Rainy Day
- Indoor Treasure Hunt: Create a treasure map, hide items around the house, and let your toddler embark on a treasure hunt adventure.
- Storytelling Corner: Build a cozy storytelling corner with pillows and blankets. Take turns inventing stories or reading books.
- Build a Fort: Use couch cushions, blankets, and pillows to construct an epic fort. Let your toddler’s imagination run wild inside their new fortress.
- Indoor Picnic: Lay out a picnic blanket, prepare favorite snacks, and have an indoor picnic. Bonus points for themed picnics!
- DIY Art Gallery: Encourage your toddler to create artwork, then hang it up around the house, turning your walls into a personal art gallery.
- Homemade Playdough: Make homemade playdough with simple ingredients. Your toddler can shape, mold, and create to their heart’s content.
- Music and Dance Party: Crank up the tunes and have a dance party in the living room. Let your toddler’s moves steal the show.
- Science Experiments: Try easy and safe science experiments like making a volcano with baking soda and vinegar or growing crystals.
- Puppet Show: Create sock puppets or paper bag puppets and put on a puppet show together.
- Kitchen Creations: Involve your toddler in simple cooking or baking projects. Let them decorate cookies or make mini pizzas.
- Nature Collages: Collect leaves, sticks, and other natural treasures on a dry day, then use them to create nature-inspired collages on rainy days.
- Sock Skating: Place socks over your toddler’s shoes and let them glide around on hardwood floors.
- Rainy Day Bingo: Create a bingo game with pictures related to rainy day activities. Play and see who gets bingo first.
- Cardboard Box Adventures: Turn cardboard boxes into spaceships, racecars, or castles. Your toddler’s imagination is the limit.
- Paper Plate Masks: Craft masks using paper plates, paints, and decorations. Have a mini masquerade party.
- Sensory Bins: Create sensory bins with rice, beans, or sand, hiding small toys for your toddler to discover.
- Origami Animals: Learn basic origami together and make adorable paper animals.
- Crayon Art: Melt crayon shavings between wax paper to create vibrant and unique artwork.
- Shadow Puppets: Use a flashlight to make shadow puppets on the wall. Let your toddler guess what they are.
- LEGO Masterpiece: Build intricate LEGO structures or sculptures together. Duplo is a great alternative is fine motor skills aren’t refined enough for LEGO
- Dress-Up Extravaganza: Raid the dress-up bin and let your toddler become a princess, superhero, or anything else they fancy.
- Balloon Volleyball: Blow up a balloon and play an indoor game of volleyball or keep-it-up.
- Pasta Jewelry: Create jewelry using pasta noodles and paint. It’s a fun and creative fashion statement.
- Homemade Playhouse: Use cardboard boxes to construct a mini playhouse for imaginative play.
- Garden Inside: Plant indoor herb gardens or small potted plants. Teach your toddler about caring for plants.
- Puzzle Time: Complete puzzles together, gradually increasing the complexity as your toddler’s skills grow.
- Tape Art: Use painter’s tape to create unique designs on the floor. Let your toddler color in the spaces.
- Bubble Bath Adventure: Turn bath time into an exciting adventure with colorful bath bombs, bubbles, and toys.
- Science in the Kitchen: Try simple kitchen science experiments like making a volcano with baking soda and vinegar.
- Finger Painting: Break out the finger paints and let your toddler create colorful masterpieces with their hands.
What do you do on rainy days with your toddler?
Let me know below!