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Being a grandparent is an amazing experience! It comes with the joy of getting to know, love, and spoil your grandchildren. When it comes to finding creative and fun ideas for entertaining grandchildren, there’s no shortage of ideas.
From simple activities like baking cookies or taking a walk to more involved projects like building a birdhouse or having a movie night, you can always find something fun for them to do. Let’s explore some great ideas for entertaining your grandchildren and making lasting memories together.
Ideas for Entertaining Grandchildren that are Preschoolers
Entertaining preschool grandchildren can be an incredibly rewarding experience. It is important to tailor activities to their age group, as they typically have shorter attention spans and differing levels of development than older children.
Ideas for entertaining grandchildren could include arts & crafts projects that are interactive but also help with concentration like coloring or paper mache, outdoor activities such as sandbox play or short nature walks, and movement-oriented games that can be adjusted to fit the abilities of your grandkids like Simon Says or Ring Around the Rosie.
Educational activities like making flash cards or counting games that require active participation from both the adult and the child are excellent ideas. With a little preparation and creativity, you can have a great time bonding with your preschool-aged grandkids!
Have a Picnic in the Park
A picnic in the park can be a great way to entertain your preschool grandkids! Not only does it get everyone out in the fresh air and sunshine, but there’s something about eating alfresco that can make mealtime extra special.
Bring along some pre-made sandwiches, potato salad, juice boxes, and snacks to enjoy together, or challenge your grandkids to help you make some yummy creations at home. If you have a blanket, don’t forget to bring it too so you can all sit down and relax while savoring every bite.
After your picnic, take a leisurely walk around the park (or maybe play tag if they are up for it!) and end the day with happy memories of time spent together.
Make homemade playdough
Making homemade playdough is a great way to entertain your preschool grandkids! This simple recipe can be made with just a few ingredients and it’s so much fun to play with.
- 1 cup of flour
- 1/2 cup of salt
- 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar
- 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
- 1 cup of water
- Drops of food coloring to make your desired color
Mix the ingredients together in a pot. Turn the heat to medium-low and stir until the mixture thickens into the dough. It should take about 10 minutes.
Once it is done cooking, knead the playdough for a few minutes on a floured surface. Separate into balls for each grandchild. For extra fun add some accessories like cookie cutters. If you don’t have any, try the dollar store.
As an added bonus, your grandchildren will be learning through sensory exploration while having a blast.
Have a Dance Party
Put on a favorite tune and start moving and grooving around the room. To up the fun factor, grab some props like scarves, hula hoops, or ribbons that the kids can use to create their own mini-choreographies.
If you have someone handy with a video camera you could even record it all and make your own music video. Have some healthy snacks like fruit and veggie sticks, fresh popcorn, or energy balls on hand for energizing refueling breaks.
Ideas for Entertaining Grandchildren – Paint with Watercolors
Gather watercolor paints, paper, clean paintbrushes, cups of water, and a few rags. You can use real brushstrokes or simply dip the end of the brush in the cup of water and flick it onto the paper for more abstract shapes.
For extra fun, you can add objects like leaves or straws to create interesting patterns that look almost like little mini-paintings! Don’t forget to showcase your masterpieces – either frame them or hang them up on the fridge for all to admire.
Build a Fort with Blankets and Pillows
Grab some blankets, sheets, and big cushy pillows to create your own little hideaway. Maybe add a few battery-operated lanterns, flashlights, or Christmas lights for extra ambiance.
Don’t forget to bring snacks, books, and games that can fit inside the fort. Try making stories together, going on adventures, or playing card games. When it’s time for bed you can snuggle up in the comfy confines of the blanket fort for family cuddles and cozy sleepovers!
Have a Tea Party with Stuffed Animals
Having a tea party with stuffed animals is an adorable way to entertain your preschool grandchildren! Use some of their favorite stuffed animals plus all the ‘tea party’ essentials – cups, saucers, plates, and mini snacks.
You can even craft your own personalized invitations to make the experience extra special! Don’t forget a toy tea set filled with pretend beverages like juice or sparkling water and some accompanying treats.
Have everyone don their best dress-up clothes and use their imaginations for a truly enjoyable tea party experience!
Play Dress Up
All you need is some of their favorite dress-up clothes and accessories, then let the kids’ imaginations run wild. Encourage them to come up with their own characters or stories and explore different roles.
Invite other grandparents, siblings, parents, and close friends to join in the fun – you can even put on a play or skit at the end of the dress-up session. Be sure to take lots of pictures for lasting memories!
Have a Scavenger Hunt
This is one of the most fun ideas for entertaining grandchildren. Make a list of age-appropriate tasks, such as finding certain items or completing simple challenges. Then, divide the children into teams and let them explore the designated area.
Make it more engaging by inscribing clues on rocks or wood blocks for them to find along their journey. Have each team take turns hiding their own items around the area and have them present their findings when they’ve completed the hunt!
Make Homemade Ice Cream
Making homemade ice cream with your preschool grandchildren is a fun and delicious way to entertain them! Start with the basics – most no-churn recipes only require a few ingredients.
Here’s a simple no-churn ice cream recipe that you and your family can enjoy! You will need:
- 2 cans (14 ounces each) of sweetened condensed milk,
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract,
- 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream.
First, pour the condensed milk into a medium bowl and add the vanilla extract. Whip the heavy cream in a separate bowl until stiff peaks form. Fold half of the whipped cream into the condensed milk mixture until it is completely incorporated. Then, fold in the remaining whipped cream until everything is combined.
Next, spoon the ice cream mixture into a 9×5 inch loaf pan lined with parchment or wax paper. Smooth out the top and freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.
Let your grandchildren help measure out the ingredients, and get creative with the flavors. Try adding their favorite toppings or garnishes for some extra flair.
Ideas for Entertaining Grandchildren in Middle Childhood (ages 6 to 12)
Entertaining grandchildren that are 6 to 12 years old can be a fun and rewarding experience. While it can feel similar to entertaining children of other ages, there are also some key differences that should be taken into account when planning activities.
This age of grandkids will have more attention span and energy than younger kids, so you may want to consider activities that require teamwork or problem-solving skills like scavenger hunts or creating art projects.
You may also wish to provide options that involve fostering independence such as going on bike rides or exploring local nature trails. With the right amount of guidance and supervision, they are bound to have plenty of fun!
Let’s take a look at some great ideas for entertaining grandchildren in this age range.
Outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, and playing sports.
Not only will your grandchildren get some much-needed fresh air, but they’ll also build memories that will last a lifetime.
For the colder days of the year, organize snowball fights or plan a day at the ice rink. Taking a day-long hike can be especially fun, as it allows plenty of time for chatting and bonding.
Biking is also a great way to explore nearby parks and trails while getting some exercise. And finally, playing sports is an excellent way to spend the afternoon – basketball, soccer, and even Frisbee are all great options!
Indoor games such as board games, card games, and puzzles.
Indoor activities can be just as fun as outdoor ones and are a great option for entertaining grandchildren aged 6-12. Board games, card games, and puzzles are some of the best ways to bond with your grandkids while also showing them how to use their minds in creative ways.
If you’re looking for something a little more high-energy, try running a family game night with team-building relays and competitions. Or, if you want something quieter but still challenging, opt for traditional brain games such as checkers, chess, or even bingo.
Creative ideas for entertaining grandchildren, such as drawing, painting, and building with Legos or blocks.
Drawing can help to hone your grandkids’ fine motor skills as they learn how to make shapes and express themselves on paper. Painting is also an excellent way to boost self-expression and introduce them to the world of color and texture.
Building with Legos or other blocks is a great creative outlet that encourages problem-solving skills and encourages their imagination.
Science experiments and projects.
You could start by growing plants, building a terrarium, studying biology with a microscope or learning about the environment. Chemistry experiments such as making glue or slime are also great for younger kids to explore.
Physics projects can involve building wind chimes with objects like keys, building a rocket out of cardboard, or understanding gravity through paper airplanes. Astronomy can be an enjoyable activity if you have access to the right tools and information.
Building and flying kites or model airplanes.
Building and flying kites or model airplanes can be an excellent way to entertain grandchildren. When it comes to model airplanes, there are a few different types such as balsa wood gliders, rubber band-powered planes, and foam planes.
As for kites, traditional diamonds are always fun to fly, but you could also explore delta and box kites, Japanese fighters, Chinese dragons, Eddy kites, and many other varieties.
Making crafts is a creative idea for entertaining grandchildren.
Making crafts, friendship bracelets, scrapbooks, and birdhouses are all excellent activities to do with grandchildren. When it comes to crafts, you could start by gathering different materials such as paper, yarn, glue sticks, feathers, beads, and other objects. Then you can brainstorm ideas on what type of craft to make.
Friendship bracelets can be made using colored thread or fabric strips; you can create fun designs that your grandkids will enjoy wearing. For birdhouses, you could go to the store and purchase a premade kit for your grandchildren to assemble or create one from scratch!
Planting a garden or growing a small indoor herb garden.
For planting a garden, start by selecting a spot in the yard and preparing the soil, then you and the grandkids can decide together what seeds to plant! Planting lettuce seeds is easy and gets fast results. Zucchini is a fun one because the plants get so large. Or pumpkins for Thanksgiving and Halloween!
You could also opt for an indoor herb garden, using large pots or containers with drainage holes. Plant things like basil, oregano, thyme, mint, rosemary, and sage. Not only will your grandkids have fun getting their hands dirty, but they’ll learn about plants and herbs too!
Having a water balloon or water gun fight.
Yes, that’s right. I said it. Get out there and have some good old fun with water.
Having a water balloon or water gun fight with grandchildren can be an excellent way to keep them entertained. First, gather supplies like balloons and guns, then head outside to a wide open space.
Let the kids pick teams and assign rules; make sure they understand the importance of playing safely. This is also a great opportunity to teach them about cooperation, following directions, and having fun!
Movie Night! One of the best ideas for entertaining grandchildren.
Having a movie night with grandchildren can be a great way to keep them entertained. First, choose a movie appropriate for the age group; you can find age-appropriate reviews online.
Then, set up the living room or wherever you plan to watch the movie and get some snacks ready—don’t forget the popcorn! To make movie night extra special, encourage the kids to wear their favorite pajamas and let everyone pick out their own snacks. Finally, turn on the movie and enjoy!
Go to an amusement park or water park.
Find out which parks are near you and check for any discounts. Once you have the details sorted out, plan what rides each grandchild wants to go on ahead of time so you don’t waste time deciding and/or waiting in lines.
To make it extra special, bring some snacks and treats like cotton candy or popcorn. Finally, enjoy the day and make sure to get lots of pictures!
Teenagers! Ideas for Entertaining Grandchildren in their Teens
Entertaining teenage grandchildren can be a great bonding experience, but it can also be quite different than entertaining younger grandkids. When planning activities, it’s important to consider the interests and ages of your teenagers.
They often have more freedom, so think about activities that involve exploration and independence like outdoor picnics or scavenger hunts. It may also be helpful to focus on activities that require some problem-solving skills like escape rooms or coding classes.
Let’s get started with some fun ideas for entertaining grandchildren that are teenagers.
One great way to entertain your teenage grandchildren is by tying-dyeing old T-shirts or other fabrics. Not only is this a fun and creative activity, but it can also be an educational experience as well.
Before beginning the process, discuss with your grandkids the science behind tie-dyeing and show them the different techniques to use when creating their own design. For younger teens, provide step-by-step instructions on how to make the perfect design, and for older teens let them experiment with colors and techniques on their own.
How to tie-dye.
- Gather your supplies: fabric dye, rubber bands, a plastic sheet or tablecloth for protection, and a T-shirt.
- Machine wash and dry your T-shirt beforehand to ensure the dye sticks well.
- Dampen the T-shirt before folding it into desired shapes, such as circles or stripes. Tie sections with rubber bands and make sure you wear gloves while handling the dye!
- Apply the dye in sections until covered and wrap in plastic sheet or tablecloth for up to 12 hours (you may want to leave it overnight).
- Rinse off excess dye under cold water until all visible tint is gone and hang up to air dry completely before wearing or using!
Visit an escape room or an online version.
Escape rooms are physical experiences where teams try to solve puzzles in order to progress through levels and ultimately escape the room. They can offer hours of entertainment, as well as puzzles that require problem-solving skills.
Online versions allow you to play from the comfort of your own home and usually require just an internet connection.
Geocaching is an outdoor treasure-hunting activity that teenage grandchildren will love. It can be done on your own or in groups and involves using a GPS receiver or mobile device to hide and seek containers, often called geocaches or caches.
To begin, you’ll need to enter your location into a GPS device or smartphone app. Once you’re connected, you’ll receive coordinates for nearby caches. Then it’s time to go hunting!
You’ll need to look for clues, such as landmarks or maps, to track down the hidden cache box. Once found, open the box and replace the item inside with something of equal value – like a trinket – before signing the logbook inside and hiding everything back where you found it.
Geocaching is great way to spend time outdoors while having fun together as a family. The challenge of finding hidden objects sparks creativity and encourages exploration – plus it’s super rewarding when those treasures are finally located!
Take them to a local sports event.
Taking teenage grandchildren to a local sports event can be an excellent way to spend quality time together and create lasting memories.
Sports events provide an exciting, thrilling atmosphere that everyone can enjoy. Those who are unfamiliar with the sport will still appreciate the high-stakes games, while those who love the sport will surely get engrossed in cheering for their favorite team or player.
At local sports events, you may even have a chance to meet some of the athletes! With autograph sessions, kids will get the opportunity to feel like real VIPs and make even better memories. Plus, many stadiums offer food and game stands so teens can snack while they watch – leaving them entertained until the end of the game.
Have a Spa Day!
Having a spa day with teenage grandchildren is a great way to spend quality time together while also getting some much-needed relaxation.
At Home: Create a relaxing spa atmosphere at home with peace and quiet, soft music, and scented candles. Invite your grandkids to pick out masks and lotions for facials, give each other manicures and pedicures, and make homemade body scrubs or bath bombs. Lay down towels for foot massages – it’ll be an afternoon of pampering!
At the Spa: If you decide to take your teen grandchildren to the spa, there are plenty of treatments that are age appropriate. Relaxing massages can help relieve tension in the back and shoulders, while facials can leave skin feeling softer than ever.
Manicures and pedicures will bring out their inner glamour queen, or opt for waxing if they’re looking for more permanent results.
Do volunteer activities.
Involving teenage grandchildren in volunteer work is an excellent way to teach them valuable lessons on compassion and making a difference in the world.
Volunteer work can range from helping the elderly or disabled, taking care of animals, working with disadvantaged youth at organizations such as homeless shelters and community centers, assisting with environmental clean-up efforts, and more.
With teenagers, it’s important to make volunteer activities engaging for them. Find something that interests them – if they love animals, perhaps joining a local pet shelter would be a great fit! Or if they’re passionate about music, organize a free concert for people who might not usually have access to arts and culture.
Let your grandkids have some say in what type of volunteer work they do – this will ensure they stay engaged and feel empowered while making a difference in the community.
Set up virtual meetings with family members who live far away.
Having family members who live far away can be difficult for children – virtual meetings are a great way to bring them closer together.
Set up virtual meetings with your grandkids’ extended family, like aunts and uncles, cousins, or even grandparents they haven’t met yet. This will give them the chance to form relationships with their extended family in an impersonal setting that’s still full of love.
Consider using video chat services like Zoom, FaceTime, Google Hangouts, and Skype so you can see each other’s faces during the conversations. Exchange pictures, share stories and laughs, and plan fun virtual activities together such as playing online games or watching movies at the same time.
Having these opportunities to connect with distant relatives is sure to make everyone feel closer – it’ll be a time of bonding the entire family from across the miles!
One of the most excellent ideas for entertaining grandchildren – go out to eat at a nice restaurant.
Taking teenage grandchildren out to eat at a nice restaurant is an ideal way to make them feel appreciated and teach them proper etiquette.
Before heading out, go over expectations with the grandkids – how they should act, dress appropriately, and speak politely. During the meal, they can learn table manners such as which utensils to use and how to properly converse with their server.
Explain why it’s important to show respect for the restaurant staff and other patrons. Talk about why it’s important to order thoughtfully. Explain to them about tipping. You can even go over percentages of what to tip.
Take a staycation.
Staying at a local hotel for a staycation with your teenage grandchildren is an exciting way to spend time together. This is one of my personal favorite ideas for entertaining grandchildren. Who doesn’t love a nice hotel stay?!
Booking a room will give everyone the chance to explore and experience something new in their own backyard. Plus, it provides everyone with much-needed relaxation and space away from home.
Take advantage of the amenities – challenge the kids to a game of pool or go on bike rides around the area together. Or, if they want some downtime, you can always lounge by the pool or order dinner in your room.
Additionally, older teenagers may appreciate learning more about hotel management. You can talk to them about how everything works behind-the-scenes!
Your grandkids will love spending time away from home without having to travel too far – plus, you’ll come back feeling even closer to them than before.
A learning idea for entertaining grandchildren. Visit historical sites nearby.
Exploring places of interest will give them a chance to get out of their comfort zone and develop an appreciation for history and culture. Not only will they be able to experience the physical environment, but they will also gain insight into what life was like during different periods in time.
If you want, you can play games such as I spy or what’s missing, which are great for boosting observational skills as well as creativity. Ensure that everyone takes part in any activities that you plan – this helps build strong bonds between grandparents and grandchildren.
Lastly, make sure to take lots of pictures – adding visuals to historical stories makes the events come alive! Invite the kids to help create captions for the photos so that you can relive those joyful moments together once back home.
Go to the driving range or play golf.
Introducing your teenage grandchildren to golf can be a great way to connect and have fun!
If they’ve never played before, the driving range is a great place to start. It’s more relaxed and helps them get used to the game before heading out on the course.
At the driving range, you can show them basics such as stance and grip, as well as important techniques like how to keep their head down and follow through on each shot. Give them helpful tips so that they can develop their own technique and enjoy hitting balls around with you.
After plenty of practice at the range, they’ll be ready to take on 9 or 18-hole golf games with you! Make it an entertaining experience by creating family tournaments or even competing against one another for prizes – the possibilities are endless.
Teeing up some time together will give your grandkids something special to remember.
Prepare a gourmet meal together – ideas for entertaining grandchildren.
Preparing a gourmet meal together is an entertaining way to bond with your teenage grandchildren!
Cooking can be a great way to introduce them to the joys of food and exposing them to different flavors. Create a list of ingredients they might not have tried before, and let them get involved in the shopping process.
Once you’re in the kitchen, divide up the tasks and teach them some new skills – this could be anything from cutting vegetables properly to how different types of heat affect an ingredient. You can also watch helpful videos online together so that they can learn more advanced techniques.
At the end of it all, enjoy the meal you created together! Teach them the etiquette of eating at a dinner table. They’ll remember the experience fondly while learning valuable life lessons along the way.
When it comes time for clean-up, have them put away leftovers or load the dishwasher. Doing chores together is a good reminder that cooking isn’t just about fun but also responsibility.
Final Thoughts on Ideas for Entertaining Grandchildren
Above all, when it comes to entertaining grandchildren of all different ages, the key is to get creative. Involve them in activities that are fun but also help them learn something new or discover a different perspective.
Whether it’s playing golf, preparing a gourmet meal, painting a picture, or just talking over some ice cream, find ways to create lasting memories as well as imparting life lessons and values. That’s what grandparenting is all about!