Keeping little ones entertained can be an expensive undertaking, so we’ve gathered together 26 awesome ideas that all cost less than $10! You’ll already have most of what you need to keep youngsters entertained for hours and you’ll find everything from simple experiments to ingenious racetracks.
Remember it’s not about how much money you spend, it’s about the quality of the time you spend with your children that matters!
Grab the toy cars and set up a masking tape race track and see who is the ultimate champion! You can make it as small or large as you want and it all depends on how much space you want to use.
Got a mini spy or two at home? Then set up a laser maze with a little tape and a some paper streamers for them to try and climb through whilst they pretend they’re the next James Bond! You could even make your own invisible ink at home so you can pass private messages to each other to make it feel like a real ‘mission’
Simple crafts are a fun and creative way to keep children entertained and a DIY kaleidoscope will keep the fun going once the crafting has finished. Why not try putting different things inside to make different shapes and combine different colors!
Make a lava lamp! This simple project is part science experiment, part craft and is a whole lot of fun! Add different colors and watch as they defy gravity by bobbing up and down! If you have a little Einstein at home who loves science then why not make ice grow with this super easy experiment. If that doesn’t take your fancy then create bouncing bubbles, which are a really fun and modern take on an old classic.
Try making homemade bouncy balls. With just a few items you’ll be able to throw these together in no time at all and best of all, they actually bounce once they’re made!
Build your kids their own pool noodle race track with this simple DIY. It’s perfect for toy cars, marbles or balls so they can see which they prefer racing or what goes furthest once the track runs out!
Forts are always a winner. Kids love them and if we’re being honest so do most adults, so why not help your little ones build a newspaper fort and see how big you can make it!
Arts and crafts are always fun, so why not have a crafting afternoon where you make shadowbox collages using pictures from old magazines. You could even encourage your little ones to create stories with them!
This is one of the easiest ideas on the list and is great to play as part of a group or on your own. What you do to play color wheel hunt, is place down different colored pieces of paper then race to find objects that match the color! It couldn’t be any easier but you’ll have a great time with your little ones playing.
Tunnel number game is a fun game that you can play to help with mental arithmetic and number recognition so it’s great for all ages. You’ll just need some paper and a ball to set up this inventive and educational game, it’s so fun your children will never know they’re learning…shhh!
Using just a few items you already have you can make the shape matching game, where children have to find the shapes and match them. You could even try hiding shapes in a room to add a whole other dimension to the game.
Become a pilot for the afternoon and make your own paper aeroplanes and see where they land on the paper plane landing strip. If you put numbers along the landing strip then whichever you land on/nearest too is how many points you make, then try a different designed plane!
When you go to the carnival or a fair all the side games are brilliant fun and now you can create your own versions at home for the whole family to play. Paper plate ring toss and the Bean bag knock down game are ridiculously easy to make and you can use items you already have to create your own fun fair at home!
We all used to pretend the floor was lava and we couldn’t let it touch us and it was always great fun, so why not set up an obstacle course using items you have in your home, pillows, blankets, cloths and anything else you can think of.
No cook play dough is another fun recipe you can use to entertain your little ones. It’s really straightforward so even if you haven’t made it before it’ll be really easy, then help them make their own models with it!
You could use either popsicle or craft sticks to build a chain reaction then watch what happens when they all fly everywhere once you’ve built it. Just like setting up dominies and knocking them down this is a lot more enjoyable and satisfying than you realize.
Using just some scrunched up newspaper and some tape you can make the sticky spider web activity. See how many pieces of paper the kids can stick up there, or test to see who throws the highest etc.
Everyone loves to go bowling and now you can do it at home without spending a fortune. This DIY bowling game is a fun way to all play together and has the added bonus of knocking things over.
Play a little indoor balloon tennis to keep your youngsters active when going outside isn’t an option. All you’ll need is a balloon, some popsicle sticks and some paper plates!
Turn telling a story into an interactive experience by creating DIY story in a bag kits! See what twists and turns your little ones stories will take with this awesome idea and best of all you can just use what you already have.
Why not print off a Frozen fortune teller so you can test your Frozen future with this enjoyable and ingenious activity!
Arrrrrr me hearties grab your pirate map and go on a treasure hunt. Check out how your children can make the ultimate treasure map before hunting out the treasure…remember X marks the spot!