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Looking for fun things to do at home with kids that don’t cost a ton of money? Check out this list of great inexpensive ways to have fun at home!
Psst! Looking for more ideas? Check out these creative ideas for family fun at home, these frugal vacation-replacement ideas, and these budget-friendly summer fun activities. And don’t miss our family’s top 5 favorite board games!
Guest post from Bella of Bella’s Money Café:
As social distancing recommendations continue, we have found ourselves spending more time than usual at home as a family.
To keep ourselves entertained, we have come up with some fun activities that have introduced quite a bit of laughter into our lives at a surprisingly low cost!
Inexpensive, Fun Things to Do at Home With Kids
If you’re looking for some creative, fun activities to do together as a family while at home, these are our top 5 favorites we’ve really enjoyed lately…
We are a family fond of puzzles because we love the challenge!
The sense of accomplishment when we finally finish one and the joy of working together keep bringing us back to puzzles.
If you have little ones at home, you can still get them involved by asking them to find the edge pieces or to help finish the final few pieces of the puzzle.
The best part is that puzzles are fairly inexpensive even if you buy one online. A 1000-piece puzzle typically costs around $20. However, if you shop a second-hand store, you can often find brand new boxes of puzzles for less than $5!
2. Fort Building
My family found a YouTube video that showed us how to build an epic fort with common household items that we already have — such as pillows, chairs, paper clips, and of course, bed sheets. We even brought some Christmas lights into our fort!
Building a fort is SO fun for kids, too! I remember when I was a kid, every opportunity to not sleep in my own bed was an adventure, and I gladly went to sleep in the fort without my parents’ coaxing.
Additionally, since you probably already have all the key elements on hand at home, it’s probably going to be a completely FREE form of entertainment.
Sometimes all you need is a bit of creativity introduce some excitement into your life with what you already have on hand. And I’ll bet if you ask any kid, they’ll say this is one of their favorite fun things to do at home!
3. Growing Plants
We have recently tried growing some simple plants and have been surprised and delighted by the results.
We started out with soybean sprouts and green garlic since they seemed relatively easy to grow and didn’t require a lot of expensive equipment or raw materials.
Some of my friends have also tried growing lettuce from the leftover stem. Similar to green garlic, you only need the stem, a clean glass with the water level covering the roots (about 1/2 an inch), and sunlight. Within a week, you should be able to see some small leaves growing out of the center of the stem. Once that happens, you can decide to either eat the leaves or, if you want to go one step further, plant the lettuce into the soil for a fully-grown edible plant!
Growing your own plants is such a frugal way to have fun at home with kids!
4. Cooking Competitions
Cooking and baking are always a fun thing to do at home, and kids love to join in. And if you want to take it up a notch, you can try a cooking competition!
We loved doing this as a family. The criteria we set were simple. We were allowed to use all resources available, with some caveats: all ingredients must be already available at home, and we must complete the recipes within an hour.
Whoever got the most votes from others would win the competition AND would not have to wash dishes for a week. For someone like me who isn’t fond of washing dishes, it was a huge incentive! 😉
At the end of the competition, we had a nice salad with bean sprouts we grew, fried rice, spaghetti with meatballs, and some warm banana bread cupcakes. Although these dishes were nowhere near the standards of those in an actual competition, we all had plenty of fun and had a good meal to celebrate at the end.
5. Old-Fashioned Games
Nowadays, we spend more and more of our time glued in front of electronic devices. And games are a great way to bring the entire family together for some screen-free fun.
Old-fashioned, simple games like hide-and-seek and scavenger hunt never get old!
Even as an adult, I still find that these activities bring me joy. For example, my dad found a tiny little plastic toy from the back corner of a drawer, and we have been taking turns hiding it in unexpected places for people to find. The toy has been found in the shower caddy, in the closets, on a hat, or even in a bowl in the dishwasher. Every time someone finds the toy, you can hear a wave of laughter and clapping in the house.
Who would have thought that such a simple and inexpensive trinket could deliver so much fun for adults and kids alike!
All of the above inexpensive activities were thoroughly enjoyed by members of our family, regardless of age.
I encourage you to try some of these in your household. You might just discover some unexpected fun!
Do you have any other ideas for fun things to do at home with kids? I’ve love to hear!
Bella Wanana is a writer passionate about personal finance. She is the proud owner of Bella’s Money Café, where she loves sharing her knowledge of personal finance and money-saving tips and tricks.