Working from home: 20 activities to keep kids busy

Fun activities children can do by themselves

If you’re trying to keep your boss and your kids happy at the same time, we’ve put together a list of easy activities to help you cope with working from home. Take your pick from this list of fun ideas that children can do by themselves at home. All are ideal for children aged 3+, and some are suitable for toddlers, too.
  • 5-10 minutes
  • 3+

Mini missions: send your children to complete these indoor challenges.

  1. 1 Can they build a rainbow? They have to find different coloured objects and create a rainbow on the floor.

    2 Drive a bus? Tell them to take their favourite teddy on a bus journey and visit every room in the house.  

    3 Be a unicorn? See how many different shiny things they can collect.

    4 Wear all their clothes? How many pairs of leggings, tops, socks and hats can they wear all at once?

  2. 5 Play sink or float? Give them a pot of water and then send them off to collect different objects for their experiment.

  3. 6 Collect letters? How many things can they find that have the first letter of their name on?

    7 Look for shapes? Can they bring you a circle, triangle, square and rectangle?

    8 Draw a monster? But they have to go to each room in your house to draw a different part of his body.  

    9 Find patterns? Can they find something spotty, stripy, checked and flowery?

    10 Drive a train? They have to make a train out of a row of cushions and put a favourite toy on each one.

    5 Minute Fun Activity Cards have 50 instant ideas like these in an easy-to-use pack. Tell me more.

Build a rainbow
Play sink of float
Drive a train
Easiest ever sock puppet
DIY fancy dress hat
Raisin box monsters
Easy biscuit decorating
Handprint sloth

Easiest ever makes: no tricky step-by-steps to study, just quick ideas that will keep kids busy.

11 Can your child make a googly sock puppet? They simply stick eyes on a sock.

Extend the activity: they can make lots of silly socks.

More googly eye crafts. 

12 Create a paper cup hat? Kids can decorate a paper cup to turn it into a hat to wear. Later, tape some string inside so they can tie it onto their head. 

More paper cup makes. 

13 Craft a raisin box monster? Your child covers a raisin box with paper and then draws a face and/or adds googly eyes.

Try more raisin box ideas. 

14 Turn a kitchen roll tube into a pretend telescope? Tell them to cover it in paper and decorate it with stickers, sequins or buttons.

Extend the activity: can they use the telescope to look for birds out of the window?

See more kitchen roll crafts. 

15 Make a card for someone special? Fold a piece of paper or card for your child to draw a picture on. They can add stickers and glue on craft supplies to make it look extra special.

Extend the activity: Can they write their name and/or a message to someone they love inside. Then post it together.

More great ways to make cards. 

16 Turn a hand into a sloth? They draw around their hand, cut out the handprint, and colour it brown. Then draw a sloth’s face on the thumb and toes on the end of each finger.

More super sloths. 

17 Decorate biscuits? Just give your child icing pens to give their biscuit a funny face.

Try more great biscuit designs. 

18 Create a calm collage? Give them magazines, a blank piece of paper, safe scissors and a glue stick. Can they create a picture by snipping and sticking images they like?

More calm ideas. 

19 Take a play clay challenge? Can they roll the dough to make a snake? Turn the snake into a snail? How about turning a ball of clay into a fish?

See more easy play dough sculptures. 

20 Make their own lunch? Just give them the bread and fillings to make a sandwich. Then they use cutters to make them into fun shapes.

See more healthy lunch ideas.