Fun indoor activities to do with a toddler

Looking for fun indoor activities to do with your toddler? Look no further.

Setting up activities when you’re stuck indoors doesn’t need to be difficult or elaborate – in fact, they should be easy and most of the time, you can use things from around the house.

We asked our playgroup community what some of their favourite indoor activities were and they came up with the following fantastic ideas.

Some are our favourites and others are quite creative – yet still simple.

Fun indoor activities for toddlers (and parents!)

You don’t need to go out and buy toy tea sets for this – you can use any plastic plates, cups, cutlery lying around the house. Or even let them play with some pots and pans. Get the toys in on the fun too!

Our play dough recipe is simple and super easy to make. If you haven’t tried it yet then check out how to here.

  • Washing toys

This one is a favourite one at Playgroup WA! Fill up a tub with water (add bubbles to make it extra bubbly) and give them sponges, wash cloths, cups etc. and let them go for it.

  • Box play

Paint or decorate a box, turn it into a vehicle, flatten the box and draw roads and a mini city on it for car play. Have an avid golfer in the family? Grab some golf tees and stick them on the box and let the little ones have fun hammering them in!

  • Ice cube play

Smash them, paint them, watch them melt.

  • Toy hide and seek

A favourite with toddlers, hide toys around the house and hand the kids a basket or bucket and send them on a hunt!

  • Shaving cream sensory tub

Squirt in some shaving cream (food dye if you feel like amping it up) and let the kids have fun! Add in some toys for the kids to find (and give them a wash after!)

Not only is this a fun activity, but a great way to re-purpose plastic bottles. Click here for more.

How long can you keep the balloon off the ground? Use a fly squatter, cardboard tube or your hands to hit the balloon to one another. Or hang the balloon from the doorway or a branch for some hitting practice! More on balloons here.

Yes this is simple, but repetitive reading is not only fun for your child, but great for their development. Snuggle in and grab some of their favourite books for some wonderful one-on-one reading time. Check out more here.

  • Drawing / painting

Again, a simple one yes, but still a great activity! Expand on this by experimenting with finger paints or painting/drawing on different surfaces (old boxes, old sheets etc).

  • Ziplock painting

Want a mess free alternative to painting? Squirt different colours of paint into a ziplock bag, make sure it’s properly sealed and then stick the bag onto a window (or floor, or table). Young kids will love moving the paints around with their hands and fingers. Watch our video here.

  • Cubby houses

Grab the chairs from the kitchen, some sheets and blankets and all the pillows you can find and create a wonderful fort/cubby house. The best part about this is letting the little ones use their imagination on what it is – is it a tent? A cave? A castle? What toys do they want to bring in? For extra fun set up their morning tea or lunch in their too.

  • Baking

The key to baking with kids is to keep it simple! Find an easy recipe, have all the ingredients ready to go and let them help pour, stir, mix and taste! The best part about this activity is that everyone gets to enjoy something yummy after.

  • Contact paper collage

A glue free alternative to doing a collage activity and one that’s perfect for little hands! Click here to read more about this activity.

  • Shadow theatre

All you need is a darkened room and a torch! Use your hands, toys or homemade puppets and let your imagination go wild. Kids love this one.

  • Music & dancing

Pop on some tunes and get grooving! This is especially a good one to do when you’ve all been cooped up inside and feel like getting the body moving. Dancing is a wonderful way to increase happy hormones!

Looking for more?

Check out our messy play guide here or read what our favourite household items are to play with here.