101 awesome activities for kids ages 5 to 8

Jan. 9, 2020
101 awesome activities for kids ages 5 to 8

Do you struggle with thinking of fun activities to keep your child entertained on the weekends and after school? You're not alone! It can certainly be difficult to come up with unique activities for kids. And although it might be easy to just pop in a movie or allow your little one to play games on your tablet, psychologist and play expert Dr. Jacqueline Chinappi, of South University in Savannah, Georgia, urges you to remember that too much screen time can contribute to behavioral problems, obesity and attention issues.

In today's digital world, this is a growing concern. In fact, according to Dr. Anne Fishel, of the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, children around 8 years old at times have up to 11 hours of screen time per day.

Help your little one exercise her mind and body by trying out these 101 fun activities for 5- to 8-year-olds.

1. Make a batch of homemade play dough.

2. Go on a nature walk and collect leaves or rocks.

3. Move the furniture around so your little gymnast can practice his tumbles.

4. Play “Go Fish.”

5. Read a classic children's book out loud together.

6. Make a fort out of blankets and pillows.

7. Plant flowers in the garden.

8. Camp out in the back yard.

9. Learn to ride a bike.

10. Go berry picking.

11. Bake a pie using your freshly picked berries.

12. Build a model airplane.

13. Grab some binoculars and go bird-watching.

14. Learn how to play the recorder.

15. Make sock puppets.

16. Press flowers and put them in a scrapbook.

17. Learn how to knit.

18. Visit your local zoo.

19. Observe insects through a magnifying glass.

20. Visit a farmers' market.

21. Play dress-up.

22. Learn how to braid hair.

23. Grab some chalk and decorate the sidewalk.

24. Have an outdoor picnic.

25. Is it raining? Have a picnic indoors instead!

26. Visit animals at a pet store. (Just try not to bring them all home!)

27. Pop some popcorn, and snuggle up to watch some home movies.

28. Make a map of your house or apartment.

29. Learn how to jump rope.

30. Make a guitar out of a box and rubber bands.

31. Visit your neighbors.

32. Bake brownies.

33. Learn a magic trick.

34. Plant a vegetable garden.

35. Build a snowman.

36. Have a snowball fight.

37. Make a pizza with all your favorite toppings.

38. Visit a pumpkin patch.

39. Make friendship bracelets.

40. Turn a pine cone into a bird feeder by adding some peanut butter and birdseed.

41. Cut out homemade paper dolls.

42. Play freeze tag.

43. Play “Simon Says.”

44. Write a letter to Grandma.

45. Get out a bag of hair ties and create some fun hairdos.

46. Go to the library.

47. Have a tea party with real tea and snacks.

48. Cut out pictures from magazines to make a collage.

49. Play “Red Light/Green Light.”

50. Color!

51. Write an original song.

52. Take turns drawing each other's portraits.

53. Go on a hike.

54. Build a sandcastle.

55. Paint each other's fingernails.

56. Teach your dog or cat how to do some tricks.

57. Make your own bubble solution.

58. Lay out an ice cream sundae bar.

59. Play “Follow the Leader.”

60. Tie-dye T-shirts.

61. Have a fashion show.

62. Feed ducks at a local pond or lake.

63. Play a board game.

64. Turn craft foam into bath floats.

65. Play “Hide-and-Seek.”

66. Make pinch pots out of air-dry clay.

67. Slice apples and turn them into paint stamps.

68. Turn your living room into a winter wonderland with toilet paper, cotton balls and pillows.

69. Break out your makeup and let your child give you a new look.

70. Put on a play.

71. Do a word search.

72. Make shadow puppets on the wall.

73. Visit a local farm.

74. Make sculptures out of aluminum foil.

75. Learn how to hula hoop.

76. Make muffin tin crayons.

77. Cut snowflakes out of paper.

78. Play mini golf.

79. Make hot chocolate.

80. Lay out in your back yard, and talk about the shapes you see in the clouds.

81. Run through a sprinkler.

82. Create a secret handshake.

83. Go fishing.

84. Play musical chairs.

85. Learn how to do a cartwheel.

86. Make rainbow foam.

87. Create a paper chain with colorful construction paper.

88. Learn how to play checkers.

89. Put together a puzzle.

90. Make a drum out of an oatmeal container.

91. Visit a science museum.

92. Learn a new language.

93. Make leaf and tree rubbings with paper and crayons.

94. Catch fireflies.

95. Go for a drive with no destination.

96. Make a sundial out of paper plates.

97. Play “Duck, Duck, Goose.”

98. Build a dream house out of Legos.

99. Find rocks outside and paint them.

100. Have your child write a letter to her favorite book character.

101. Do a crossword puzzle.

Tips and stories from parents and caregivers who’ve been there.

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