In a world where most of us spend too much time looking at screens, we need to focus on fun ways to keep family time as a priority. Even the simple act of having nightly family dinners has significant benefits for the emotional, academic, and even physical development of your children.
Imagine the benefits when you focus on at least one fun family activity each day? We’ve come up with ideas for a full calendar month of fun family activities to get you started. We’ve even included a printable calendar so you can track what you’ve accomplished as a family.
31 Days of Fun Family Activities
Let everyone choose something they want to bake together as a family. If you can’t agree on one thing, be sure to set aside more then one baking day. We find Sundays are always a great day for family baking. Last week we made cookies.
The kids will take pride in knowing that they helped create something delicious for everyone to enjoy. Here are a few of our favorite recipes:
Creating a family garden is not only fun, but teaches your kids the useful skill of growing their own food. Flower gardens are also a great way to create living art. Gardening is a great way to show your kids how patience, hard work, and perseverance can pay off in big ways!
You can start a little vegetable, herb, or flower garden depending on the space you have. If you have a lot of space, everyone can have their own little plot where they can grow what they want as well!
Story time has always been a favorite in our family. We started reading to our children when they were just babies. As the got older we started a Family Book Club and read the same books so that we could have conversations about them. The Harry Potter series is still our favorite.
A fun family activity to add to story time is acting out scenes from the story rather than just reading it. Everyone becomes part of the story, creating a unique memory to look back on forever. Bonus points for going all in with costumes, funny voices, and homemade props!
Board games are not only a fun family activity, but offer many learning opportunities. Kids learn how skills like strategizing, following rules, and even how to lose.
Try creating some of your own games like themed charades or backyard scavenger hunts. This is a great way for your family to be creative and play by your own rules.
Arts & Crafts Day
Art is a wonderful daily activity for kids, but it’s even better when the entire family gets involved. The possibilities are truly endless. Let your imagination run wild. Make a family collage or create a painting you all work on together. Lately, we’ve been painting rocks with words of positivity and leaving them anonymously around the neighborhood.
Family pizza night is still one of our a favorite activities. All you need is dough, toppings, sauce, and an oven to have your very own family pizzeria! Let everyone create their own personal sized pizza, and top it however they want. Rolling out the dough and trying to twirl it like an authentic pizza-maker is especially entertaining.
I think my kids had at least one pillow fort a week when they were little. When the whole family gets involved, we created pillow forts that took over an entire room. Use a combination of cardboard boxes, blankets, couch cushions, pillows, and more to create a huge pillow fort to hang out in.
Get comfy and watch a movie series for a day with lots snacks and finger food. Stay in your pajamas for extra coziness! We’ve done this with the Harry Potter series a few times. The Avengers series is another one of our favorites. This one works especially well when you all pile into your pillow fort to watch. More ideas at: 9 Movie Night Ideas your Kids will Love
Learn Sign Language
We taught our kids some basic signs before they could even speak. It really helped them to communicate before they could use words. It’s really fun to learn as a family. You can use books and/or online tutorials, help each other practice, and even try going a whole day communicating with just sign! Find more about learning sign language here: https://www.startasl.com/american-sign-language-alphabet/
Film A Day-in-the-life of Your Family
Use your smart phones, or a camcorder to document a whole day with your family. There are many easy apps to help you edit the movie with text, music and more. We try to do this at least once a year. As the years go by, it’s fun to look back and remember what we were up to that year.
My teenage daughter has taken dance since she was little so she’s ready for a dance party anytime. When the kids were little, this was one of our favorite fun family activities. Make a playlist with everyone’s favorite songs, and have big dance party! Go crazy and have fun. It’s great exercise too. Sing along for some extra fun. This is definitely the perfect activity to record during a “day-in-the-life” video too.
Pilates and Yoga are fantastic ways to help with flexibility and fitness. This is especially important for kids spending a lot of time at their desks or on their laptops. Always start with the basics before adding on more complex movements. Yoga is a great way to help calm and quiet the mind after a stressful day. Both yoga and pilates help promote a healthy body and mind. This site might be helpful if you are a beginner: https://www.yogabasics.com/practice/yoga-for-beginners/
This can be indoor or outdoor, depending on your situation. Pack up some food, drinks, snacks, pillows, and blankets. Then set up a nice little picnic spot in your house, backyard or local park/ Picnics are always a lot of fun and much more relaxing than a typical formal meal at a table. My kids still have fond memories or our indoor family picnics.
Write A Story
There are so many creative ways to write a story. If you have access to a white board or chalk board, you can create silly stories by each family member adding a few words. You can also have a parent transcribe story ideas from the kids each week and you’ll have a little book by the end of the year. If creating your own stories seems like a daunting task, use fill-in-the-word stories from Mad-libs. These always gave us a good laugh.
Make Cards/Write Letters
This has been an activity we’ve done for years. We create cards for the elderly in our local nursing homes and for the troops overseas. They so appreciate handmade cards with messages from kids. This activity is a great way to spread positivity and love to those who may be feeling lonely or discouraged.
You can use these links to send your cards: https://supportourtroops.org/cards-letters AND https://www.operationgratitude.com/express-your-thanks/write-letters/
For little kids, let them choose some old clothes from your closet, and make the silly outfits. Buy some dress up clothes from a thrift store kids can create costumes as well. Parents can pretend to be fashion show judges and score everyone’s costumes. Reverse the roles to let the kids just parents in crazy outfits too.
Tie dye is very on trend these days and can be a fun family activity. Best of all, you can tie dye just about anything from clothing to pillow cases to canvas bags and more. Check out “5 easy tie-dye instructions — plus, 4 tie-dye patterns to try”
Learn To Sew
Sewing is a skill that always comes in handy at one time or another. Start with simple skill like learning to sew on a button or fix a ripped hem. Build up to using a sewing machine if your child is interested. A great sewing project for the family is to create a family quilt. Each family member can take on squares. Sew them together at the end for a unique family heirloom.
Family Video Games
Most video games these days have multiplayer options that make family fun super easy! Some of our favorites family video games include race cars, bowling, and escape rooms. Consoles that use your hand and body motions are especially fun.
Check Out Old Photo Albums
My teens still love looking at old photo albums of themselves when they were babies. We also look at photo albums from previous generations. They Learn about family history helping keep memories and traditions alive. Great grandpa’s war photos tell incredible stories of a different era. Great autie’s cookie recipe means much more if your kids have a face to place with the stories. As the saying goes “a picture is worth a thousand words,” and they also preserve the memories of the past.
Order a model airplane, building, robot, car, etc. and build it together as a family. Model building is an awesome way to learn about how things go together, and how to work together as a team. Lego projects work well under this category as well.
Make A Scrapbook With New Photos
Let the kids take the lead to create a family scrapbook with photos they take. You can buy scrapbooking supplies online or at a local craft store. There are also many online services for creating digital scrapbooks. Have each family member create pages of their own and write little memory notes next to every picture.
Life Sized Drawings
This fun family activity works well outdoors with sidewalk chalk, but it can also be done on a big piece of poster board. Have someone lay down and trace around their body so you have a template. Once that is done, everyone can work together to fill in the template and make a life sized drawing of the family member!
Karaoke is a always a lot of fun. Making it a family affair is sure to get lots of laughs too. You can even hold a contest for the best or silliest voice. My son loves to add in interpretive dance for bonus points.
Look For Four Leaf Clovers
Hunting for 4 leaf clovers takes focus and persistence. Both are great skills for kids to learn. Looking for some clovers at a local park or in your backyard can pass a lot of time! Finding a 4 leaf clover is always a rewarding and exciting experience. If these seem impossible to find, you can hunt for other things like spider webs, ant hills, etc.
Make A Critter or Fairy House
A birdhouse project is a fun family activity. You can also use these “homes” for other critters like chipmunks, squirrels, mice, and other small mammals if they live near your house. If you don’t have easy access to an outdoor area, use a wooden birdhouse kit to create a fairy house. This one is great for the tooth fairy or just mythical fairies that visit the house at night. Maybe they leave little treats behind. These can be fun for miniature doll houses too.
Follow An Online Tutorial
There are so many online tutorials out there that you can make practically anything. Try something new like knitting a scarf, making a circuit board or learning some basic phrases of a new language. This doesn’t have to be one big family project. Instead, each family member can pick a topic and show off what they learned.
Play In The Rain
Rain is usually an excuse to stay indoors, but you can have a lot of fun stomping in puddles and playing in the mud. Some of my kids fondest memories are days when we played in the rain. These make for great photo ops too.
Get the brain and body moving by creating family scavenger hunts. You can use themes like finding things of one color or size, find things in only one room, or the entire house. These are also great for outdoor exploration. Set a time limit if you have older kids; and make sure if you have younger kids, that they can have fun without feeling too pressured to “win.”
In our area, it’s easy to find a cool rock outside. If you don’t have easy access to finding a rock, they can be purchased online or at a local craft store. Use individual rocks for painted designs, word, animals, etc. Combine rocks to create other creatures or spell our sentences. Here is an example of using a group of colored rocks to create a caterpillar.
If you find rocks with unique shapes, perhaps you can turn them into something that looks similar. For example, a lumpy rock might look like a toad; so you can paint legs and eyes and spots on it to make it look like a real toad!
Quiet time should really be part of everyday, but being quiet together provides special bonding time as well. When the kids were little, we sometimes took naps together. Other ideas include
- Word search
- Educational worksheets
Fun family activities are wonderful opportunities to bond and create amazing memories with your kids. Here is a printable calendar you can use as a reminder to try something every day.
Be creative and have fun with it, and it will be a wonderful month of family activities the whole family will love.