10 Activities to Do With Your Child Who's Home Sick

Big Kid 32

10 Activities Even Kids Home Sick Can DoWhen a sick day comes up, there is rarely any warning. You put a healthy child to bed, and when you wake them in the morning, they are burning with fever, stuffy, and miserable. There is nothing sadder than a sick child, but sick children are also bored children, especially when their sickness is only something "mild" like pink eye or a cough.

They can't go to school, but they also can't just sleep all day. So what is a busy mom or dad to do?

There are many activities that kids can do when they're sick that don't require them to run and jump and play, but will also keep them reasonably entertained and not too bored. Here are 10 ideas for sick day "fun":

  1. Go through photo albums: You must have an old wedding album or an album from college your kid has never seen. Help your kids get to know life before them and take a walk down memory lane.
  2. Make a collage: If you have old magazines sitting around, now is the perfect time to cut pictures out and create a collage. Make a "healthy" collage full of all the things you can't wait to do once your kids are healthy again.
  3. Bake cookies: Make sure they wash their hands!
  4. Do a puzzle: This is a quiet activity that requires maximum focus and takes a while to complete. Perfect for long, boring days at home.
  5. Take a walk: One of the best things for a sick child is fresh air. It doesn't have to be strenuous and it doesn't have to be long, but a walk is a really nice way to clear the lungs and get out of the stale air.
  6. Watch home movies: Cuddle your baby and watch all her milestones while she is right next to you.
  7. Play a board game: Pick one she loves and play over and over. Best out of three!
  8. Read books aloud: Pick a chapter book you loved as a kid and make a day out of it.
  9. Make a "sick fort": Staying in bed is boring, but it's made less boring in a tent! If you don't have a tent, make a fort and drag the mattress to the ground.
  10. Skype with friends: You can't have real-life play dates, but you can always Skype with school friends just to say hi and get the scoop on the day's events.

What do you do when your little one is sick?


Image via Ocean/Corbis

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ceciliam ceciliam

We watch movies and relax. I could see where baking cookies might be fun but when your child is sick the last thing you want to be doing is giving them things with sugar...sugar suppresses the immune system.

momka... momkaribg

We also watch movies and nap.

autie... autiemama516

 Board games are excellent! Also building with Legos or reading a book. Watching some TV also is tops for us! At this time of year Holiday movies like Frosty the snowman are great!

nonmember avatar Tab

Shouldn't your child be resting. This author probably wouldn't know since under the "About the Author" she states, "can't decide whether she is a mother, writer, or runner"

I can't say I would EVER have my sick child outside walking or baking.

mommy... mommy_lissa

Why not make a smoothie? Have them pick their favorite fruits and add plain yogurt and milk. It may not be very time consuming, but they'll get some extra vitamins.

Madel... Madelaine

Good ideas!!

nonmember avatar Magen

Geez, Tab, who pissed in your Cheerios this morning? She's talking about the illnesses that keep your kid out of school but not necessarily severe enough to make them feel really ill, like pink eye. Pink eye is highly contagious in a closed school environment, but your child doesn't actually feel 'sick'. So although you have to keep them home, you still need to find stuff for them to do. Geez, chill out!

ashja ashja

If they can take a walk and bake cookies, they can go to school.

nonmember avatar KBelle

@Ashja. I'm glad my child doesn't go to school with yours. I find it selfish that you would contaminate an entire classroom with your sick child.

iam4you2 iam4you2

Great ideas!l

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