Rainy weather and snowy days sometimes throw a wrench in your outdoor recess plans, but luckily, you have the upper hand. Keep the smiles and laughter going even when it's gloomy outside by implementing some enjoyable indoor activities. Your students will have a creative outlet to plug their energy into, and you'll get to try easy ideas that leave little mess behind. It's a win-win situation for everyone involved, and it'll leave you prepared for the next rain or snow day that comes around.
Here are 10 ways to maintain the classroom joy when the weather turns gray.
One of the most classic and fun games, charades will give your students a chance to practice their critical thinking skills while stretching their imaginations. Divide them into two teams and choose a student from either group to start the game. Tell them to act out a movie character, animal, cartoon or book character without speaking. The rest of the class will have to guess who they're playing, and the team to guess right will receive a point.
2. Board Games
Board games like Scrabble, checkers and Sorry! are perfect for bad-weather days. You can keep everyone occupied in separate areas without roughhousing or chaos, and students will get to experience new games they may not have tried before.
Let the young ones express their inner creativity with some colorful paint and an array of paintbrushes. Remember to set out some cardboard or newspaper to prevent messes, and have them wear aprons or smocks. Bring in a watercolor kit for a departure from the usual acrylic. Your students will love experimenting with new ways to paint using different mediums. And what's more, arts and crafts activities will let them display their artistic talents in constructive ways — who doesn't enjoy a splash of color?
4. Four Corners
One student stands in the middle of the room with their eyes covered and counts from 10 to zero. All the other students move to a corner as quietly as possible. They can walk across the room while the leader is counting, but anyone not in a corner at zero is out and must sit down. Then, the student points to a corner, and anyone in that spot also has to sit. If no one is in the chosen place, all players marked out can rejoin the game.
5. Indoor Hopscotch
Create indoor hopscotch using numbered cardboard squares and beanbags or crumpled paper balls for makeshift stones. This activity will get your students up and moving to burn off that energy, and it will help with number learning for the younger ones. Your number squares can be any material if you don't have cardboard around. Don't worry if they don't come out perfect — your kids will soon be jumping on them to their hearts' content.
6. Musical Chairs
Play musical chairs by putting on a song and letting your students dance around the chairs before the music stops. Remember to set up one less chair than the number of players, and remove another chair each time someone gets out of the game. The game lasts until only one person is left sitting, and then it starts over again. Change up the song you play each time, or make it a bit faster for extra excitement.
7. Dance Party
Turn up the tunes and let your students forget about their rainy day blues with a dance party. Dancing can lift anyone's mood, whether choreographed or freestyle, and it enhances the body's strength and balance. Plus, it improves stamina and builds stronger bones.
Encourage imagination by showing your students how to make origami creations. Have origami books on hand to help students with folding their preferred shapes, or play a guided video they can all watch at the same time. Your students will be in awe of how plain paper can transform into lively figures, and you can have them paint or draw on their artwork for added color.
9. Balloon Juggling
Let your kids practice their coordination skills with a game of balloon juggling. See how long they can keep the balloons in the air and how many they can juggle at once. Add a competitive edge by assigning multiple teams with specific colored balloons, such as red or yellow. Set up a basket for each group and instruct them to get all their balloons into it — without dropping any. The team who gets the most balloons into their basket wins the game.
10. Card Games
Card games are much like board games for convenience, and they don't take long to teach if your students are unfamiliar. Try simple games like Old Maid or Go Fish that test your kids' reasoning abilities while providing entertainment. Use standard playing cards or buy a deck specifically for children to make the game easier for them to visualize and understand.
Fun for the Whole Classroom
Your kids are sure to forget all about the sour weather with these fun indoor games. Allow them to explore their creativity in a safe and enjoyable environment. Don't let a few dark clouds ruin your parade — bring out your kids' favorite alternatives to sunny weather activities.