10 Ways to Occupy Your Children During Social Isolation

10 Ways to Occupy Your Children During Social Isolation

I’ll admit… I have been getting sucked into the rabbit hole that is Facebook lately.

At the beginning of the year I made a commitment to be on Facebook (and other social media outlets) far less than in 2019… and I was doing so well until the coronavirus hit.

But after several late nights of reading through my news feed I realized I needed to put.the.phone.down.

I’m allowing myself a few minutes a day to check in and see what my people are up to (the ones not in my immediate circle of course), but other than that I’m staying far, far away.

Well how will I get my news you ask? By going directly to the experts: the CDC, the World Health Organization, and the Midwest Department of Health.

Look, I love my Facebook friends so this is not a rag on them, but it’s amazing how much calmer I feel when I’m not putting myself directly in the path of… well… so many opinions about the virus.

With that said, we are taking the recommendations seriously (but not panicking). Bug’s preschool was cancelled for now, David was told to work from home so we are pretty much only leaving for grocery shopping at this point.

In other words, we are in the thick of social distancing as I’m sure most of you are as well.

So here’s the big question:



Even though we stay home a lot, we get out pretty frequently as well so that question is pretty valid.

I’m a huge proponent of letting kids do their own thing (i.e. I’ll play with them when they ask, and plan an activity or two throughout the day, but I mostly just let them play how they want and intervene only when it’s absolutely necessary), but with normal routines thrown off I thought it would be helpful to brainstorm a few extra ideas for when we all need a little distraction.

And why not share those ideas with you right?

Side note (but important note): I have a 5 year old, 3 year old twins, and a 6 month old so these activities are geared towards younger kids.

So here’s 10 Ways to Occupy Your Children During Social Isolation:

*the links below are affiliate links*

1| The first, and maybe the most/least obvious idea is to send them outside. 😉 But for real. Getting outside is really great for staying healthy so even if
you have to bundle them up, get them outside every day if you can. No need to orchestrate any activities, just send ’em outside and watch the creative juices

2| Do a Popsicle bath. It’s simple! Just give them some Popsicles and let them float. My kids LOVE this, and will be in there for as long as I let them. click to see the reusable popsicle molds I use >>

3| Find little objects like buttons or beads and have them create patterns in rolled out play dough. This will occupy my kids for SO long, and it gives me a chance to get the kitchen cleaned or feed the baby. click to see the beads my girls love >>

4| Speaking of cleaning, give them all a dry dish towel and ask them to help you clean. Maybe my kids are weird, but they LOVE to follow me around and “wipe down” things while I’m cleaning. It’s the perfect solution to getting some chores done while keeping your kids occupied. we also love this cleaning set for kids >>

5| Play a game of Simon Says. Again… easy, but who says these things have to be difficult or take a lot of planning?

6| Give them a bowl of water and a bath toy (with towels underneath of course) and let them splash around in the water for a bit. This one will get them wet so just make sure to take clothes off (or you can even put them in their swimsuits which makes it even more exciting!). the girls LOVE these color changing horses >>

7| You guys are going to think I’m crazy (and maybe I am), but my kids think it’s the best thing ever when I put a bowl of milk on the floor and let them drink out of it like cats. Again, messy, but it keeps them busy so I think it’s worth it!

8| Have a dance party. Get your cardio in, let them get their wiggles out… it’s the prefect combo!

9| Do some Cosmic Yoga, and bonus points if you do it with them! We have such a fun time doing this as a family, and giggling at how silly we look in each pose. The girls love this Frozen video the best >>

10| Have them paint with different objects: cotton balls, the end of the carrot you were going to throw away, etc. For some reason it’s way more fun to paint with objects than with a paint brush! We love these vegan/organic/non toxic paints >>

I’ll tell you a secret: I am the furthest thing from a Pinterest mom. I am NOT crafty at all, and I don’t have the patience or fortitude for putting together complicated activities.

So if you clicked on this post hoping for those types of suggestions then, well, I’m sorry.

But if you’re like me, and you just need something quick and easy to push the reset button then these are the suggestions for you.

Very little cleanup or setup… my kind of activitiy.

Let me know if you try any of them, or if you have some great activities to share!

Let’s all create a shared collection of ideas!

Until next time,


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