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boredom busters kids

Looking for some screen-free boredom busters to stave off cries of boredom? Here are some ideas from City Kids HQ which need more or less input from parents depending on the age of your kids.

Teabag challenge
The aim of the game is to get the teabag in the cup. All that’s required is a drained teabag and a cup. Take in turns, take scores and take steps back from the cup to make it harder.

Make a Facemask
Great for adults as well as kids and easy to make. Squish half a banana with around 1 tbsp orange juice and 1 tbsp honey. Mix well. Apply to your face and leave for 15 minutes. It may be lumpy but that’s ok. Wash off and moisturise.

Sink or swim
Fill a washing bowl with water and find objects that sink or swim.

Make a magazine
But of course, we would recommend this! Start with a plan of what you’d include, what kind of magazine is it, who is its audience, research some pictures, draw sketches, think of headlines, copy out some recipes or useful tips. Check out magazine designs that you really like. Click on our Green issue below for some CK inspiration. No computer required, can all be done by hand and stapled together. Trust us. Our 12 year old self did just that!

Wash the car
This has got to be a winner. Supply soapy water, sponges and chamois, crack open a beer and sit in the sunshine. Older kids may require renumeration…

Lego Tower
Compete to see which family member can build the tallest tower or longest snake.

Guess the object
Put various objects in a bag and then each person takes a turn to be blindfolded and guess what’s inside.

Donuts on a string
If you’re lucky enough to have found ring donuts or clever enough to make them, tie onto some string and hang from more string across the room or garden. See how fast you can eat one. No hands and no licking the sugar off your lips!

Pin the tail on the donkey
Old ones are the best ones. Haven’t got a pin, use a sticker. Click the link for a print out, or to buy some time, get the kids to draw a donkey.

Bushtucker trial
A true test for the family’s fussiest eaters. Requires a blindfold and a selection of different foods, both nice and nasty(ish). Players guess what they’re tasting and the score master keeps note. The winner guesses the most correct. You could use ice cream, biscuits, pasta, olives, mustard etc.

Homemade snap cards
Use a ruler and pencil to divide an A4 piece of paper into 12 cards. Draw pictures on each one. Do this twice and then play snap or the memory game.

Shave a ballOon
Again, one for the older kids. Blow up a ballon, cover in shaving foam and try to shave it without popping it. Could also be seen as training for an important life skill!

Board games tournament
For committed families, dig out your favourite games and run a tournament, jotting down the winner each time. We can’t promise there won’t be arguments and tears from the most competitive members of the family!

Paper aeroplanes
Come on. You remember how to do this.

Make an obstacle course
Inside or out. Be careful!

Build a den
Again, inside or out and play with toys, eat lunch, snacks etc. Must have blankets, duvets and cushions.

Requires two or more people and possibly some adult interaction so coffee break will have to wait.

Research an animal
Copy a picture of your favourite animal from a book and write a paragraph of fun facts. Older kids can put a little more effort into their research!

Hide and seek
No explanation needed!

Paint pebbles
Collect on a walk or find in the garden. Wash at home and then paint.

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