Rainy days don’t have to be gloomy and dull — especially for kids! Rainy days bring many rare opportunities for kids to have fun outside in creative ways. In this article, I’ll discuss several ideas along with essential safety tips.
Here are 22 super fun outdoor rainy day activities for kids to enjoy:
- Paint with mud.
- Stomp the splashiest puddles.
- Have a water war fight.
- Get scientific — measure the rain.
- Make art with sidewalk chalks.
- Use paint powder for color blast fun.
- Make boats.
- Let the rain draw for you.
- Take pictures of your kids playing in the rain.
- Get your kids to take pictures.
- Undertake a DIY dam-building project.
- Have a mud-pie bake-off.
- Rescue worms.
- Build an Atlantis.
- Bring out the bath toys.
- Practice mindfulness in the rain.
- Sing and dance in the rain.
- Catch raindrops in your mouth.
- Catch frogs.
- Race the leaves.
- Play rainy day soccer.
- Have some Slip N’ Slide fun.
Indoor activities like reading books, puzzles, and video games will always be there for your kids regardless of the weather. However, only a rainy day gives them a chance to play in the mud, jump in puddles, and enjoy screen-free outdoor activities. Read on to find out how to make rain exciting for your kids!
- Safety Rules for Playing in the Rain
- 1. Paint with Mud
- 2. Stomp the Splashiest Puddles
- 3. Have a Water War Fight
- 4. Get Scientific — Measure the Rain
- 5. Make Art with Sidewalk Chalks
- 6. Use Paint Powder for Color Blast Fun
- 7. Make Boats
- 8. Let the Rain Draw for You
- 9. Take Pictures of Your Kids Playing in the Rain
- 10. Get Your Kids To Take Pictures
- 11. Undertake a DIY Dam-Building Project
- 12. Have a Mud-Pie Bake-Off
- 13. Rescue Worms
- 14. Build an Atlantis
- 15. Bring Out the Bath Toys
- 16. Practice Mindfulness in the Rain
- 17. Sing and Dance in the Rain
- 18. Catch Raindrops in Your Mouth
- 19. Catch Frogs
- 20. Race the Leaves
- 21. Play Rainy Day Soccer
- 22. Have Some Slip N’ Slide Fun
Safety Rules for Playing in the Rain
Safety always comes first in any activity involving kids — especially with outdoor rainy day activities. Here are some essential safety tips to keep in mind and teach your kids:
1. Don’t Play Outside if There’s Lightning and Thunder
Heavy rain brings along thunder and lightning risks, so it’s essential to teach your kids some tips to keep themselves safe. Impart basic awareness about it, such as telling them to head right inside if they hear thunder.
They should also not be near isolated tall objects like trees or tall fences, as that’s where lightning is more likely to strike. Kids shouldn’t play in wide-open playing fields when there are lightning and thunder risks. You should ask them to wait at least half an hour with no thunder noises before they can go back outside.
2. No Touching Electric Wires
Kids should be nowhere near electric wires whether or not it’s raining. However, rain makes these wires even more dangerous, as they can break off and dangle from the pole due to bad weather. They can fall off any time or seriously injure or even kill someone as soon as they contact them.
Even adults don’t know much about it, but these live dangling wires are extremely dangerous. Make sure you educate your kids properly about the risks of poles, electricity, and fallen wires. If you see a puddle with a dangling wire touching it, keep yourself very far from it as water is conductive and can electrocute you upon coming into contact.
If you see any broken wires during heavy rainfall, contact the relevant maintenance authorities immediately to prevent any serious harm to other people. Also, tell your kids not to ring the doorbell if the switch is wet, as it can also electrocute them.
3. Wash Hands Regularly
Thanks to the pandemic, the world now has a newfound appreciation for the importance of keeping hands clean. In the rainy season, viruses and common cold symptoms shoot up, and puddles of water can have all sorts of bacteria in them. Keeping these risks in mind, kids need to keep their hands clean at all times.
You can also put small sanitizer bottles in their pockets and tell them to sanitize their hands every 30 minutes to keep themselves safe from germs and harmful bacteria.
4. Follow Everything Up With a Shower
Speaking of washing hands, kids should always take a warm shower as soon as they get home once they’re done playing. It’s the best thing to do after a long day of playing outside in the rain for various reasons. It washes off all sorts of germs from the mud and rainwater puddles.
Moreover, a warm shower will immediately stabilize the cold temperature, helping the body return to its normal state — reducing the risk of coughs, colds, and flu.
Make sure to dry up the kids well after the shower and dress them in some cozy clothes. It might be a good idea to serve them some warm milk and cookies!
5. Appropriate Rain Gear
Kids should also be equipped with the essential gear for playing out in the rain. This includes some waterproof boots or shoes, raincoats (preferably with hoods), and an umbrella. I recommend the Gorain Pro Raincoat for Kids (available on Amazon). They’ve got hoods and provide full-length coverage.
There are also some great child-sized (and themed) umbrellas on Amazon, such as the Disney Kids Umbrella, which comes in various prints including Minnie Mouse, Frozen, and Disney Princesses. There’s also these other Disney Kids Umbrellas, which feature Mickey Mouse and Cars characters.
These preventive measures might not make sense to you, but even if they’re out to have fun, it’s best to keep them from getting soaked. Constant exposure to cold water accompanied by heavy winds can easily lead to kids catching a cold. That’s why it’s necessary to send them out with complete preparation and equipment for a safe day out in the rain.
Now, let’s look at some of these fun activities in more detail!
1. Paint with Mud
Kids love getting down and dirty in the mud, so it makes sense why they’d love painting with mud so much. First, you need to find a make-do brush (a stick or a leaf) and dip it in mud. Then, kids can draw smileys or write their names on the sidewalk and watch the rain melt away their art, leaving behind a fresh canvas for more paintings.
2. Stomp the Splashiest Puddles
Playing in the rain doesn’t have to be complicated. Sometimes, even a splashy deep puddle is enough for kids to have the most fun. As long as they’ve got rain boots on, kids can find the biggest puddles around the neighborhood or a nearby park and stomp away!
Puddle jumping – trying to hop over the puddles instead of into them – is another fun activity. Of course, most kids get the biggest laughs out of missing the jump and landing in the puddles, instead.
3. Have a Water War Fight
Water balloon fights aren’t just for scorching summer days. Water wars can be super fun in winter rains as long as the kids have raincoats on. It’s an even better idea for a rainy day in the summer, as the cold water balloons are a great way to beat the heat.
4. Get Scientific — Measure the Rain
Besides playing games and hopping around in puddles, kids can also have lots of fun doing an educational, NASA curated scientific activity in the rain like gauging the rain.
They can make a simple rain gauge by taking an empty jar or glass and sticking a plastic ruler to one of the sides. Then, they can let it fill up as long as the rain lasts and take the reading. Encourage them to gauge the rain every time to find out what day it poured down more! Keeping a log is also a great idea.
5. Make Art with Sidewalk Chalks
Kids can have lots of fun drawing and coloring wet sidewalks with colored chalks. When everything’s wet, the moisture gives a unique effect, making everything look less like random markings and more like prominent, colorful art!
6. Use Paint Powder for Color Blast Fun
Can’t see a rainbow even when it rains? No worries — why not make your own! Kids can mix up some paint powder or a couple of food color drops in a tray and let the rain do the rest! Swirl around the rainwater in the tray to get more random designs.
Try dipping a paper halfway into that tray, and then fold the paper to get a mirrored pattern to get the coolest artwork!
The kids can even paint themselves in different colors! But it has to be summer rain for that since they shouldn’t get too wet in cold conditions.
7. Make Boats
Floating boats in puddles of rainwater is one of the most thrilling outdoor activities for kids — especially if they make their own boats! It can be pretty educational, too, as kids keep making new boats until they find a design that floats well. Help them with tips on using twigs, leaves, or anything that’s lightweight and floats well.
You should be able to find a puddle for it easily. If not, simply put a plastic tub out in your backyard and fill it up with some water — and your stormy seas are ready!
8. Let the Rain Draw for You
Get your kids to make random markings or drawings on a piece of paper with some bright colored markers. Then, ask them to place the drawings outside in the rain and let the water make its natural edits. In a few minutes, you’ll see wonderful rainbow patterns on it as the water smudges the ink in random directions!
9. Take Pictures of Your Kids Playing in the Rain
Sure, not every house has a waterproof camera stashed away for a rainy day — but you should consider buying one! They’re lots of fun and help you capture priceless moments of your kids hopping around in puddles without worrying about your camera getting wet.
If your phone isn’t waterproof, or you just don’t want to take the chance, I suggest getting the Panasonic Lumix Waterproof Digital Camera (available on Amazon). It supports 4k video recording and has built-in WiFi connectivity.
10. Get Your Kids To Take Pictures
You can also hand the camera to your kids and let them get creative. Give them a checklist of things to photograph, such as clouds, puddles, a rainbow (if there’s one) — they’ll love it! You can also rate each of their photos for an added competitive touch.
11. Undertake a DIY Dam-Building Project
Besides rain gauging, there are many other STEM activities your kids can perform on a rainy day. One of the best ideas is building a dam! They can make one using rocks, sandbags, stones, and mud. Encourage them to improve the aesthetics of the dam with leaves and twigs. If you’ve got a waterproof camera, photograph the masterpiece!
12. Have a Mud-Pie Bake-Off
Get your kids to compete at creating the most beautiful mud pie! All you need are aluminum baking plates for each kid, and let them get creative with their adornments. You can help them with tips on decorating their mud pies using rocks, small toys, leaves, twigs, etc.
Children love competing, and they love digging up the soft soil to make something of their own — so a mud-pie bake-off makes perfect sense!
13. Rescue Worms
Children love getting involved in fun and engaging tasks, so why not capitalize on that on a rainy day out? Teach kids about animal safety and compassion with this worm rescue activity. Ask them to place worms back on the earth whenever they see one floating away in a puddle! Don’t hold on to worms too long, though, as they won’t survive in your hands forever.
14. Build an Atlantis
Get your kids to build a world model outside using nothing but the items around them. They can use their toys, figurines, monsters, cars, and stuff from the rainy environment like mud, leaves, sticks, and twigs. Make sure to get everything cleaned up with soapy water when it’s all said and done, though!
15. Bring Out the Bath Toys
Whatever works in a bath also works in rain puddles. You know what that means — bring out those rubber duckies. You can order some fun packs of bath toys from Amazon, such as the Munchkin Bath Toy — they come in six different colors and can be used to scoop up water when turned upside down.
16. Practice Mindfulness in the Rain
Mental health exercises become way more fun and engaging on rainy days! Hand your kids a journal and get them to sit outside in a shelter and observe the rain. Ask them to note down any feelings they get from the environment, including smells, views, sounds, etc.
It’ll help your kids experience mindfulness. You can also read each kid’s journal to get valuable insight on how deeply they felt the rain and how well they described it.
17. Sing and Dance in the Rain
Raindrops make distinct sounds as they hit different objects! Use that to make music out in the rain. Place spoons, pots, plastic boxes, and pans outside, and let the rain do the rest. Kids can get more creative and create a whole DJ-ing activity out of it. Let one of them grab a stick and take on the drumming role, while the others sing and dance to it — Coachella 2.0!
18. Catch Raindrops in Your Mouth
With kids, the simpler an activity is, the more fun they’ll have! Get your kids to catch 10 raindrops in their mouths and count them as they feel it on their tongues. We’ve all done it in our childhood, and your kids will love it, too!
19. Catch Frogs
If there are any streams, lakes, or ponds nearby, they can be the perfect opportunity for kids to go frog-catching on a rainy day! Before allowing your kids to catch frogs, you should educate them to be gentle and return them safely on the ground afterward.
20. Race the Leaves
Find a gutter and a creek, and set your eyes on a leaf floating in there. As it rushes down with the flowing water, race it and beat it to the end!
You can also place your own DIY boats or floating bath toys in a creek to race them.
21. Play Rainy Day Soccer
Soccer is one of the few outdoor sports that doesn’t stop when it rains — so your kids shouldn’t stop either. Soccer in the rain is way more fun for kids than regular soccer anyway. However, the muddier and slipperier grounds result in higher chances of injury — so keep a close watch!
22. Have Some Slip N’ Slide Fun
A rainy day makes everything slippery and muddy. It might be a bit of a bummer for the adults, but it’s just what the kids love. The entire backyard turns into a massive slip and slide setup for kids on a rainy day!
You can also get this Amazon’s Choice Jambo Triple Lane Slip and Slide to provide the best experience to your kids — it has water sprinklers to keep the slide nice and wet even without rain!