Indoor Activities for When the Weather is Murder

Not only have we been #blessed with high heat and humidity in NYC this week, but we've also been lucky enough to receive multiple air quality warnings! Needless to say, I'm not exactly looking for outdoor activities with my little ones. As if the heat wasn't bad enough, the bad air quality just makes me nervous. As much as I advocate for and prefer being outside as much as possible with kids, this is one of those weeks when being indoors is extremely preferable. Problem is, it can be really difficult to find activities that will keep everyone entertained for long periods of times, or keep kids from going stir crazy. So here are a few suggestions for when you are housebound, whether as a result from the weather or otherwise!

Sticker Books

Sticker books like this National Geographic one are great (even though the description is truly fucking enraging. Gendered children's toys and activities will never stop being maddening; it's so unenlightened.) Since these require some concentration, kids become absorbed and quiet in these for hours. Reusable ones are also brilliant because you get more than one use out of them!

Make your own playdough

It couldn't be easier to make playdough, my mom made it for us when we were kids, and we still make it for visiting cousins and her students. It's edible and non-toxic so you don't have to worry about your lil guy feasting on it! You'll need:

1 cup of flour

2 teaspoons of cream of tartar

1 cup of water

1/3 cup of salt

1 tbs vegetable oil

food coloring

Combine all ingredients in a pot over medium heat (except the food coloring) until it gets nice and goopy. Add food coloring and then continue stirring until it starts to firm up and dough starts gathering around the spoon. Remove from heat and let it cool on a plate or some wax paper. Then enjoy!

Take a bath

Especially if your kids are starting to get overheated and irritable, just give them a toss in the bathtub. Most kids love playing in water and I find that no matter the weather, a bath can turn around just about any foul mood.

Finger Painting

Up the ante by laying out a huge strip of paper so they can make giant murals, add footprints, and protect your floors! You can use chalk on that type of paper as well.

Freeze Dance

The only bearable activity from my elementary school P.E. days, you can't go wrong with putting on some fun tunes and dancing your hearts out.

Make Paper Cranes

Teach your kids how to make paper cranes, not only are they a nice, quiet activity, but they'll look lovely around your home when they're done.

Let them help make dinner

Start early, and with something kid friendly and easy. Let them help with the salad, main course, side dishes, and dessert and they'll feel a sense of accomplishment come meal time.

Simon Says

Also a good way to get them to do whatever you want.

Touch and Feel Box

Cut a hole in the lid of a shoebox (decorate if you're feeling extra crafty!) and fill it with objects, then have your child put his hand in the hole and try to guess what the object is. It can be as simple or as gooey as you please!


Whether you make your own or buy them, bubbles will always be a kid favorite. You can be a real champion and get them one of these if you're looking to score points!

What are your old stand-bys? You can totally make it through a day without tv if you try some of these. And if you are gonna watch some tv, make sure it's something rad. (I'm so predictable.)