10 ways to keep the kids busy in lockdown

Are you running out of things to do to keep the kids entertained, educated or just… quiet during lockdown? Here are our top 10 activities to keep your little ones busy.

1. Pretend play office (Age Toddler+)

Give your children their own briefcase full of ‘office’ supplies, things like paper, pencils, stickers, post-its, an old calculator and some child-safe scissors. Set them up a desk, give them a task to do then later get them to pitch their stuff to you. It’s great fun for the kids and it’ll keep them busy while you crack on with the real work.

2. The pipe-cleaner challenge (Age 3-5 years)

Improving your children’s motor skills is the key to them becoming more independent. A cheap and easy game to help you build up their dexterity is by asking them to poke pipe cleaners through all the holes in a colander. Simple, but effective.

3. Draw a(nother) rainbow (Age Toddler+)

So, you’ve probably already drawn a rainbow in support of the NHS and stuck it on your front window. But guess what? You have plenty more windows, so can always colour in a couple more. Then when you’re done why not go rainbow hunting ¬for your daily exercise – see how many rainbows you can spot in the windows down your street.

4. Rice play (Age 3+)

Kids love to cook – even if it’s just pretend. Take a messy play tray or washing up bowl and fill it with uncooked rice or pasta. Equip your little one with spoons, bowls, and small saucepans and let their imaginations take over.

5. Go on a treasure hunt (Age 3-10)

Who said treasure hunts were just for Easter eggs? Hide sweets or toys and get your children to find them. You can create clues to help them on their way – just don’t make them too hard!

6. Cardboard constructions (Age 5+)

If you’ve been having a lot of deliveries during lockdown you may have a surplus of cardboard boxes floating about. Before you recycle them, why not have some fun – build a castle, make a truck or even create a light box tunnel.

7. Make your own jigsaw puzzle (Age 5+)

Get your little one to draw and colour in a lovely picture. Stick it to a sheet of thin cardboard (a cereal box is perfect) and cut into jigsaw pieces. You can then have fun mixing up the parts and putting them back together.

8. Write an I’m bored list (Age ANY)

Get everyone in the family to write a list of ideas of things they can do when they feel bored. Stick it to the fridge and come back to it when you’re in need of things to do.

9. Watch the LIVE cameras at San Diego Zoo (Age ANY)

What’s better than visiting the zoo? Watching the animals on a LIVE camera from the comfort of your own home. Tune in to the baboons, penguins, pandas and more as they chill out at the San Diego Zoo.

10. 7-day Disney+ free trial (Age ANY)

Last but by no means least, Disney+ is offering a 7-day free trial, so you can watch Disney films and TV shows at home on your TV, tablet, laptop or phone. If you don’t have unlimited broadband, you should think about getting an Unlimited SIM from SMARTY so you can stream to your heart’s content.

We hope these activities will help to keep your little ones entertained in lockdown.


  • SMARTY Team
  • April 26th, 2020