Top 10 Games to Play at Home with Children

Today, we'll share a complete list of the best games to play at home with children and rediscover the benefits of rainy or cold days.
Top 10 Games to Play at Home with Children
Samanta Ruiz

Reviewed and approved by the teacher Samanta Ruiz.

Written by Samanta Ruiz

Last update: 27 December, 2022

Playing is a way of sharing, family bonding, and spending quality time with your kids. That’s why we recommend you keep this list of the best games to play at home with the children.

Is it too cold to go outside? Are your little ones bored when they come back from going out? Don’t worry! With these suggestions, they’ll have a great time playing and laughing. Let the fun begin!

Activities and games to play at home with children

There are plenty of ideas to organize games at home, but here, we’ve selected the ones you can do with what you have, without having to buy anything special.

1. Puppet theater

Children love puppets and if, in addition, they make them themselves, the benefit is doubled. Once the characters and scenery have been created, encourage them to create a story and perform it for the family. This way, the entertainment will last for hours.

To make the puppets, you can use unused socks and decorate them with elements that you probably already have around the house. A few pieces of yarn for the hair, some buttons for the eyes and ornaments, and stickers or glitter to make them detailed and colorful.

A puppet show.
Give life to those socks that have been orphaned and recreate a work of art in your living room.

2. Charades

This traditional game is always a hit, especially during long rainy afternoons.

To play, divide into groups. Then, choose words out of a hat. Finally, mime that hidden term for the other group to guess. Whoever does it the fastest, wins!

3. Collage: An excellent craft to enjoy at home

This is one of the most popular manual activities for children and a special game to share and socialize.

Start by cutting or tearing some papers with your hands. Once you have a good amount of paper scraps, help your children draw a picture on a white poster board. Let them choose what they want to draw on the paper, which can be a landscape, an animal, a star, or whatever they like.

Next, put glue on the cardboard and let them fill in each part of the figure with the different colored pieces of paper until the model is complete.

4. Pillow and cushion wars

This is one of the best games to play at home with the kids if you don’t have anything prepared beforehand. The idea is to do one-on-one battles or make teams and play until one of you gives up. Of course, you need to play safely and always make peace at the end.

5. An invented story

Between children and adults, we’ll invent a story, write it down, and then read it aloud.

The game consists of starting with one or two words and then each participant adding small sentences until completing an invented story.

6. Dress up and modeling

This is a classic game that children love to play at home. But it’s not really about making costumes, it’s about dressing up in adult clothes and accessories, having a fashion show, and then laughing out loud in front of the mirror!

7. Riddles

If you have children who already know how to read, search the Internet for riddles and set up a team tournament. Whoever gets the most answers right will win a special prize, which could be dinner or a choice of the next weekend movie.

8. A pasta hedgehog

This game is a great exercise for developing fine motor skills in young children and is also a lot of fun. It involves turning a colander upside down and taking turns inserting spaghetti into the holes to form a big hedgehog.

9. Make an obstacle course home

This is one of the best games to play at home with children, as it encourages them to move their bodies and activate their energy.

Make a track with paper tape to form pigeonholes on the floor. Then, add obstacles, such as chairs or cushions, and give the child a tray with fruit to carry on the course without losing any. Let the race begin!

Parents pushing their daughters around the house in cardboard boxes.
If you’ve recently moved, take advantage of empty or unused boxes and organize a race with the children. They’ll have a ton of fun!

10. Build with cardboard boxes

If you’ve bought something for the house and it arrived packed in a cardboard box, take advantage of it and invite your children to build a house, a plane, or a car together.

The objective is for your little ones to fit inside and paint it however they want, adding the corresponding accessories: Doors, windows, wheels, wings, or whatever they consider necessary.

What does play mean for children?

The subject of play has been studied by different disciplines: Medicine, psychology, education, among others. From all approaches, there’s a coinciding concept, and that is that play is a fundamental activity for the integral development of children.

Play is part of the child’s intelligence because it represents the functional or reproductive assimilation of reality, according to each evolutionary stage of the individual.”

-Jean Piaget

Children take advantage of play to carry out different processes, as explained by the American Academy of Pediatrics in its report The Power of Play: Its Pediatric Role in Enhancing the Development of Young Children:

“Research shows that developmentally appropriate play with parents and peers is a unique opportunity to promote social-emotional, cognitive, linguistic, and self-regulation skills that develop executive function and a prosocial brain.”

But in addition to all this, you should know that children love to play with their parents! And you have the enormous advantage of proposing fun scenarios at any time or activity of daily life. You just need to get the family together and choose which activity to start with. What are you waiting for?

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.