Home Learning Activities for Kids!

by Trisha DiFazio and Allison Roeser

To all of the adults that are in some way, shape, or form supporting children during this time: WE’VE GOT YOU. We appreciate that being quarantined has been a day by day (more like minute by minute) experience accompanied by a range of emotions. And, we’ve seen and heard from so many people who are being resilient and creative during these times. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of engaging activities, websites, and apps for grades Pre-K — High School.

Activities Menu
Pre-K – 2nd Grade
Grades 3-5
Grades 6-8
High School

Before checking out the activities, here are some tips to help you stay sane: 

    • Practice the art of “good enough”. Your activities and routine are likely looking quite different at the moment. You don’t have to have a Pinterest inspired agenda or an organic structured play area designed by Gwyneth Paltrow. 
    • Be gentle with yourself. You’ve probably noticed that doing just the “basics” is taking more energy than usual. It’s okay if you’re not teaching yourself Mandarin. It’s a pandemic, not a productivity contest. 
    • Disrupt/replace anxiety. Try this incredibly simple gratitude practice to alleviate anxiety.
    • Call in support. If you notice that you’re struggling or having a tough time,  reach out to a friend or family member to help “reset”. 
    • Establish a routine. Creating structure within your days, no matter how small, will help create a sense of normalcy for you and your children.
    • Focus on helping others. Shifting the focus of your attention to how you can help someone else (no matter how small the gesture) gives your brain a rest from thinking about yourself and what’s not working.
    • Amplify positive content. Sometimes we can fall down a social media rabbit hole. Get the pertinent info and move on. Consider having a day without social media or seeking out “light” and funny shows/content. Check out SGN for Some Good News. 

Activities for Kids

Pre-K – 2nd Grade

Make a Sensory Bin Fill a bin with various objects. Blindfold kids and have them describe the texture of each item. Have kids guess what the item is and what it is used for. Then, let them create a bin for you!

Creative Letter/Word Making You can use playdough, paints, sidewalk chalk, pipe cleaners, etc. Give children examples of the letter/word and have them recreate them.

Bath Time Letter/Word Making Kids can draw letters/numbers/words with shaving cream in the bath.

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Memory Game for Matching Letters/Word Write a letter/word/sentence on 2 index cards. Place cards face down. Each player chooses two cards and reads them out loud. If the player has a match, they continue picking. The player with the most pairs wins. This reinforces letter/word recognition.

“I Spy” Play inside or out the window.

Decorate a T-shirt Find any old piece of clothing and let kids go to town.

Baking Have kids help with measuring and decorating. They will love being your sous chef!

Box Road Flatten a box and draw a road. Add blocks and/or toys for kids to build a city.

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Toy-Washing Bin In a bin, allow your kids to wash their plastic toys. Add tear-free bubbles, sponges, towels and other supplies.

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Read-at-home Bingo You can download a card from the internet or make your own based on what you would like them to read. Once the reading task is accomplished, they can cross off each bingo square.

Color Scavenger Hunt Create a card with various colors (or patterns) and have kids find objects that match them.

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Chalk Bullseye Draw concentric circles in chalk. Give each color a value. Have kids throw an object onto the bullseye and add up their totals. The first player to 10 wins.

Chalk Alphabet Hop Draw 26 squares with each letter of the alphabet in it. Then have kids make letters/ or words by jumping onto that square.

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Treasure Hunt Hide anywhere from 10-20 items around the house or outside. Tell kids to search until they have recovered all of the items.

Shape Hunt Scavenger hunt with shapes inside or outside.

Put Yourself in Chalk Art Have kids pick a scene and draw themselevs into it.

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Additional Activities

Cereal Box Pinata – Chalk Art – Keep the Ballon Up – Simon Says – Egg on the Spoon – Limbo – Make Pasta Jewelry – Puzzles – Bob for Apples

Printable Coloring Sheets

Websites & Apps

ABCmouse fun storyline-based videos, quizzes and activities

Brain Pop an educational resource that provides lesson plans for all kinds of subjects—even health, arts, music and engineering

Cosmic Kids Yoga yoga, mindfulness, and relaxation

Deep Space Sparkle website offers tons of art project ideas for all ages

Dragon Box fun math app

Epic! reading app with over 35,000 titles and read-to-me feature

Froggipedia interactive app that allows kids to observe the life cycle of a frog

GoNoodle mindfulness and movement

Hungry Caterpillar Preschool voted best Pre-school app and helps kids learn skills they’ll need for starting school

Kahoot apps and games for family fun or home study

Khan Academy offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard

Quick Maths math practice app

StoryboardThat make free on-line comic books

Teacher Created Materials offers downloadable lessons and activities

YouTube Kids offers kid-oriented family-friendly videos

Livestreams

Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Sea Otter Cam

Smithsonian’s National Zoo Panda Cam

San Diego Zoo Live Cam

Vancouver Aquarium’s Jelly Cam

Grades 3-5

Make a Time Capsule Collect items that represent this period in time. Write a letter to the finder. 

Dice Math Have children roll dice and add up the numbers to see who can get to 100 first.

Laser Maze Using crepe paper or string create a maze in the hallway.

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Origami- Check out the 3 min butterfly.

Building the Tallest Structure Give everyone the same set of materials (tape, paper, paperclips, etc.) and see who can build the tallest structure. 

Put on a Puppet Show This can be done with sock puppets that they design, or you can use a flashlight to make shadow puppets.

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Make Paper Airplanes Have kids design, decorate and name their paper aircraft. Have them predict how far they think it will fly. Discuss what features of the design helped the winner to fly the furthest.

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How High is That? This is a game the whole family can play. Everyone guesses the height, width or length of an object. The kids can then use a measuring tape to see who is correct.

Guesstimate Have kids guess how many items (Cheerios, Skittles, coins, etc.) are in a jar and then let them count them to see if they were correct.

Coin Math Have kids look through spare change and see who can find the oldest coin.

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Decorate a T-shirt Find any old piece of clothing and let kids go to town.

Treasure Hunt Hide anywhere from 10-20 items around the house or outside. Tell kids to search until they have recovered all the items.

Gallery Walk Have kids display their art around the house. They can write a caption for each piece of art and then lead a guided tour. Extend the activity by asking kids to create new works based on famous artists.

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Toothpick Towers Have kids design structures using toothpicks and marshmallows.

Ted Talk Kids can choose and research a topic of their choice and present a Ted Talk to the family. Encourage them to watch other Ted Talks as research.

Additional Activities

Write/Decorate Notes for Essential Workers – Learn to Juggle – Create a Family Tree –Make Friendship Bracelets – Freeze Dance – Memory Game – Board Games – Take a Virtual Tour of Famous Museums- Bob for Apples

Websites & Apps

ABCmouse fun storyline-based videos, quizzes and activities

Box Island computer science STEM app that teaches kids coding

Deep Space Sparkle website offers tons of art project ideas for all ages

Dragon Box fun interactive math app

Epic! reading app with over 35,000 titles and read-to-me feature

Garage Band app that lets kids record, edit and produce high-quality music tracks

Kahoot apps and games for family fun or home study

Khan Academy offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard

Marble Math app that combines math with mazes

Teacher Created Materials offers downloadable lessons and activities

Grades 6 – 8

Monologue or Dialogue Have kids pick their favorite speech or scene from a movie. They can reenact it for family or record it on their phone.

Recreate Famous Photos Using objects and clothing at home, kids can recreate famous photos, paintings, etc.

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Facetime Interview Conduct an interview with family or friends. Kids should prepare questions beforehand. They can also write to their favorite author or celebrity to request and interview.

Make Paper Airplanes Have kids design, decorate and name their paper aircraft. Have them predict how far they think it will fly.  Discuss what features of the design helped the winner to fly the furthest.

Create a  Flip Book

How High is That? This is a game the whole family can play. Everyone guesses the height, width or length of an object. The kids can then use a measuring tape to see who is correct.

Origami- Check out the 3 min butterfly.

Toothpick Towers Have kids design structures using toothpicks and marshmallows.

Ted Talk  Have kids research a topic of their choice and present a Ted Talk to the family. Encourage them to watch other Ted Talks as research.

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Additional Activities

Talent Show – Make a Quarantine Journal or Graphic Novel – Take an Online Personality Test – Edit Movies on iMovie – Make a TikTok Video – Virtual Dance Class Virtual Drawing Class  – Create a Family Tree

Websites & Apps

Box Island computer science STEM app that teaches kids coding

Deep Space Sparkle website offers tons of art project ideas for all ages

Khan Academy offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard

Marble Math app that combines math with mazes

The Infinite Arcade STEM skills game app where users design and build their own arcade games

Tween Tribune (Smithsonian) helps children of all ages think critically about the new and includes lesson plans, quizzes and videos

High School

Incredible Feats Have teens attempt an incredible (yet safe) feat like making a difficult basketball shot or bouncing a ping pong ball into a cup. Have kids research some examples on-line.

Monologue or Dialogue Have teens pick their favorite speech or scene from a movie and reenact it or record it on their phone.

Recreate Famous Artwork Using objects and clothing at home, kids can recreate famous photos, paintings, etc.

Facetime Interview Conduct an interview with family or friends. Kids should prepare questions beforehand. They can also write to their favorite author or celebrity to request an interview.

Cook/Bake Have teens cook/bake a specific recipe for the family. Take it a step further by creating a whole restaurant experience at home.

Make Paper Airplanes Have teens design, decorate, and name their paper aircraft. Have them predict how far they think it will fly.  Discuss what features of the design helped the winner to fly the furthest.

How High is That? This is a game the whole family can play. Everyone guesses the height, width or length of an object. The kids can then use a measuring tape to see who is correct.

Toothpick Towers Have teens design structures using toothpicks and marshmallows.

Ted Talk Have teens can choose and research a topic of their choice and present a Ted Talk to the family. Encourage them to watch other Ted Talks as research.

Register for the Census

Additional Activities

Talent Show – Make a Quarantine Journal or Graphic Novel – Take an Online Personality Test – Edit Video clips – Make Music – Make a TikTok Video – Virtual Dance Class – Virtual Drawing Class – Create a Family Tree

Websites & Apps

Duo Lingo learning and practice a foreign language

Hippocampus offers free math lessons statistics, calculus, trigonometry

Khan Academy offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard

My Molecularium app with games to help students understand chemistry

Ok Go Sandbox music videos on various STEM concepts

Shmoop offers funny videos, lessons, test-prep

Thank You!

Follow us on Twitter

@TrishaDifazio  @Allison Roeser

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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