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Blustery weather getting you down? Activities for bad weather

Is this British blustery and wet weather getting you down over half-term week and are you running out of activities for the children to do in this weather? MOLLY MAID, the house cleaning experts, like to think that as long as your children are wrapped up warm and dry, there are a wealth of simple, but wholesome ideas to encourage our youngsters outdoors to get a blast of fresh air. Check out our activities for bad weather:

Wind activities:

  • Create wind music: The benefit of wild weather is that the wind can create music. Why not try recording the wind’s sounds on a mobile phone or iPod. Does the wind roar or rustle? Why not then create your own wind chimes. Raid the kitchen for whisks, wooden spoons, skewers and pan lids and anything else that might make an interesting noise. Attach string to them and hand them from a tree branch and listen.
  • Make a sailing boat: Use the wind to sail a home crafted boat. Make a boat from natural materials (such as sticks or plastic from the recycling box), attach them together to make the raft, then add the stick mast and a sail. The sail can be made from leaves or even feathers or some fabric from an old sheet if you’re feeling really creative. Then don’t forget to attach to a piece of string before you sail it on a puddle or small stream.
  • Flying a kite: The all-time favourite thing to do on a windy day is of course to fly a kite – these are now available in all shapes and sizes – alternatively, you could make your own kite, but this is a little trickier.

Rain activities:

  • Rain painting: Why not let a rain shower transform some of your childrens’ work’s of art into multi-coloured masterpieces? Draw pictures on plain white kitchen paper using bright coloured water soluble pens. Then hang the pictures on a washing line and let the rain mix the colours. Try experimenting with different papers, inks and paints. Then study what the rain has done. These can then be dried and pressed to keep if you wish.
  • Make a leaf umbrella: Encourage the children to make a leaf umbrella if caught in a rainstorm. Search for the biggest leaf with the longest stalk so that you can hold it over your head. If you fancy a leaf hat instead, lay leaves in layers over each other with the stalks all in the middle. Tie the together with raffia or string. Now you can encourage your children to decorate their hats with feathers, flowers or moss even.
  • Make a wormery: Worms are a gardener’s best friend and that is easy to see in a wormery. Go out after the rain and collect a few worms in a bucket of damp soil. Then find a large glass jar with a lid or cut the top off a big plastic bottle. Then alternate layers of sand, moist soil and dead leaves leaving a 2 inch space at the top. Then place the worms into the jar and add some dead leaves, grass and a few vegetable or fruit peelings. Replace the lid and pierce a few holes in it so that worms have some fresh air. Worms dislike light, so make sure you cover the wormery with dark fabric or paper and put in a cool, dark place emulating the earth underground. After a week, you will be able to see where they have been burrowing and what has happened to the contents of the jar.
  • Make a natural shelter: This is a particularly popular activity with a group of children out on a walk in the woods. Don’t forget to take some snacks with you as you may be gone for a while! Go to a woodland with plenty of sticks and fallen leaves. Choose a good spot for a shelter such as next to a large tree trunk. Collect lots of long straight dead sticks and lean them against the branch or log (making sure they are as close together as possible). Thatch the shelter with leaf litter collected from the woodland floor. Place handfuls of this against the stick at ground level and then work upwards to the top. The thatch should be quite thick! The key is if you can see through it, the rain will find a way through.

So, let’s hope that some of the activities above can help to entertain (you and) the children for a little bit during the blustery weather!