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55 Things to Do Instead of Screens

“There’s nothing to do besides screens!” My son has actually said this to me, more than once. This is why I keep a list of fun and satisfying things we can do in a day, reminding us all of the world of possibilities outside of screens.

I polled the Sparkle Team for their list, added it to mine and am sharing it below. This list is only the beginning!

In the Kitchen

  • Plan and make dinner as a family
  • Bake anything
  • Make homemade dog or cat treats
  • Make a baking soda and vinegar volcano
  • Make hand dipped candles
  • Knead bread dough
  • Make play dough

Outdoor Adventures

  • Play badminton (Sewell McCann sport of choice)
  • Initiate a pick-up kickball game in a park near you
  • Lie in the grass for two minutes
  • Throw a frisbee
  • Work in the garden
  • Make potions with things you find in the garden
  • Walk the dog
  • Jump on the trampoline
  • Look for roly-poly bugs
  • Climb a tree in your backyard
  • Dig as deep of a hole in the ground as you can
  • Watch the clouds go by and learn about different cloud formations
  • Learn to do a handstand
  • Plant a pollinator garden

Quiet Amusements

  • Read, as a family or solo
  • Make a nest of pillows and blankets and nap (for adults too)
  • Color in a coloring book
  • Draw
  • Write a card or letter to a friend
  • Learn the lyrics to a favorite song
  • Follow instructions for a project or recipe from the Sparkle blog
  • Make a picture collage from old magazines
  • Build a pillow fort
  • Practice saying the alphabet backwards

Creative Projects

  • Make a short film
  • Make a stop action animation
  • Get out the fabric scraps and start sewing a new creation
  • Make sock puppets
  • Finger knit
  • Make a friendship bracelet
  • Make a nature materials mandala
  • Decorate the driveway with chalk art
  • DIY transform something (phone case, t-shirt, squishy, etc.)
  • Do a washi tape project
  • Build fairy houses
  • Learn to fold paper airplanes
  • Dip leaves in wax and make wreaths, garlands, or mobiles
  • Build something from boxes
  • Carve something out of wood
  • Build a bee hotel, a bat house, or a snake or frog habitat
  • Play an instrument (or even just noodle around on one)

Fun with Friends and Family

  • Play a board game
  • Have a tea party
  • Have a dance party
  • Ask what you can do to help someone else
  • Learn to jump rope or hula hoop
  • Learn a poem and recite it to your family
  • Learn something new together
  • Make your own list of fun things to do without screens!

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About the Author

Lisabeth Sewell McCann
Doer of Many Wonderful and Odd Things (including CEO)

Lisabeth Sewell McCann has worn many hats at Sparkle over the years, from Sparkle Kitchen Blogger to Editorial Director to Doer of All Odd Jobs. Her primary role is as CEO. Lisabeth and David live in Austin, Texas with their two sons.