34 Ways to Keep the Kids Entertained at Home

Amp up the fun with these educational, kid-friendly and virtual activities from some favourite Toronto attractions — all in the comfort of your home.

If you’re looking for creative ways to keep the young ones (and yourself) from going a little stir crazy while at home, Toronto’s museums, amusement parks and amazing attractions have pulled out all the virtual stops to keep the family entertained.

1. Let them explore the city through games and brain teasers at Yo Toronto.

Ever wondered what major attractions you and your little ones are? Maybe not, but now’s the time! Play memory games featuring Toronto celebrities, learn about zoo animals and discover sites around Canada’s biggest city with Yo Toronto’s playful quizzes, educational games and fun brainteasers.

2. Stretch their virtual legs out at the Royal Ontario Museum.

Since the museum is closed to the public for the next little while, have them take a virtual walk through the ROM! Google Arts & Culture offers a 360° walk-through of the museum’s exhibits.

ROM Virtual Tour  

3. Play archaeologist for a day at the Royal Ontario Museum.

Can’t get enough of the ROM's gorgeous exhibits? Comb through their fascinating database of over 45,000 objects and specimens, including Canada’s most prestigious Egyptian collection.

 

4. Engage with mummies, wildlife and dinosaurs through games and crafts.

The ROM also holds a repertoire of online quests, brainteasers and crafts for all ages. Build a mummy sarcophagus together or have your kids learn to write their names in Egyptian hieroglyphs.

Hot tip: peruse #ROMLearning on Instagram and have the kids share their own discoveries and creations.

 

5. Shop the coolest boardgames at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO).

Instead of regular ol’ Monopoly, imagine playing Van Gogh-themed Go Fish (Gogh Fish?) or stacking stylish Art Deco building blocks. Because adding artsy flair to family game night can’t hurt.

 

6. Learn, create and pass the time with AGO from Home.

Recently launched, the AGO now brings their awesome museum to you and the at-home crew through creative experiences! Enjoy fascinating stories, DIY crafts and homeschool projects.

 

7. Turn your home into a science lab with the Ontario Science Centre.

Try some DIY experiments at home or connect directly with scientists and educators on Facebook Live events. Toronto’s Ontario Science Centre offers plenty of learning resources for your curious explorer.

 

8. Pop some popcorn, sit back, learn and be wildly entertained.

Until June 15, the Ontario Science Centre in partnership with Giant Screen Films and D3D Cinema, brings you and the kids some much-needed educational cinema. As an added bonus, each film comes with a downloadable educational guide.

 

9. Connect to other cultures through the National Ballet of Canada.

Have a little ballet enthusiast in your clan? Between living room pirouettes and at-home tutu fashion shows, take them through Google Arts & Culture’s beautiful interpretations of the children’s classic, The Nutcracker, as expressed by different international artists.

 

10. Twirl through live classes from the National Ballet of Canada.

Maybe your kids always wanted to try ballet or maybe they’ve already perfected their pointes. Regardless, the National Ballet of Canada is now offering live classes. And with enough practice, you and the family can finally re-enact The Nutcracker.

 

11. Spend an afternoon with the hockey legends of the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Hockey practice may be cancelled for now, but the Hockey Hall of Fame’s got your sport-loving kids’ back. Relive hockey’s greatest moments with extensive archival footage .

 

12. Challenge your kids to a hockey-themed trivia night.

Nowadays, it’s easy to get creative with game night thanks to online tools at our disposal. Access the Hockey Hall of Fame’s Time Capsule to playfully hone your children’s hockey knowledge.

sculpture outside Hockey Hall of Fame
 

13. Take a seat on the tallest, scariest roller coaster at Canada’s Wonderland.

Canada’s Wonderland, Toronto’s go-to theme-park for adrenaline junkies, filmed an ultra-realistic video of their newest and wildest coaster: Yukon Striker. Adjust to full-screen, press play and get ready for some screaming.

 

14. Enjoy the rest of Canada’s Wonderland (maybe from a less frightening vantage point).

Explore virtual point of views from a whole collection of their rides (and, no lines!). Or, try your hand at a simplified version of their classic funnel cake recipe (thanks, Chef!). After, the kids can get hands-on with fun, interactive activities.

 

15. Homeschool the kids with help from Charlie Brown and the gang.

Remember those boring, trombone-sounding teachers on Charlie Brown? With the help of The Peanuts’ teaching activities from Canada’s Wonderland, you’ll never sound anything like them.

 

16. Dive into Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada’s live feed and draw your favourite fish.

Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada holds over 20,000 aquatic animals, including a shark tank (scary!). See them for yourselves, get inspired and draw your favourite fish friends!

 

17. Watch sharks live and in action, direct from Toronto.

Speaking of scary sharks – they’re actually not that scary – you and the kids can watch them live from Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada’s Shark Camera. What a unique alternative to the Fireplace Channel!

shark at Ripley's Aquarium  

18. Become a teacher of marine life.

Keep your children’s gears turning with the help of educational worksheets, courtesy of Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada. They’re available for all ages and levels.

 

19. Tune into the wet and wild world of Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada.

They’ve seen the Shark Cam and the fish feed, but now your kids want more! Engage their insatiable, curious minds with live events including piranha feedings, Marine Biologist Q & A’s and quirky experiments.

 

20. Drop some cool CN Tower knowledge when your kids least expect it.

Conversation hits a lull? Wow even the smartest child with fascinating, scientific facts; like what happens when the CN Tower gets hit by lightning.

 

21. Show them what the city looks like from 1,464 ft. (446 m.) up high.

After you’ve piqued their interest with your CN Tower knowledge, show them how high Canada’s tallest freestanding structure really is with the CN Tower Earth Cam.

skyline view from CN Tower at night
 

22. Paint the town red, blue, pink and all colours of the rainbow.

Hmm, what would Union Station look like if it were purple? Let your children’s imaginations run wild as they creatively reimagine the streets of Toronto with these colouring pages, courtesy of the CN Tower.

 

23. Colour the day away with Bata Shoe Museum’s colouring sheets.

All kids love to colour. And if you’re lucky enough to have an at-home printer, print off these fun shoe-themed colouring stencils. Share your creations with #BSM.

 

24. Learn all about men in heels through this virtual Bata Shoe Museum tour.

Prince wasn’t the first to popularize men in heels. See where it all began with the Bata Shoe Museum’s educational exhibit, Standing TALL: The Curious History of Men in Heels.

Bata Shoe Museum exhibit
 

25. Educate your kids on the importance of wildlife preservation with the Toronto Zoo.

Wildlife preservation is a hot topic and it’s important to keep your children informed. The Toronto Zoo offers great tips and research about fighting extinction, like adopting your very own zoo animal!

 

26. Plan a homeschooling lesson with the Toronto Zoo’s Zoo School.

But first, try saying that ten times. The Toronto Zoo is full of educational gems for your little ones, including their daily Facebook Live streams and online Zoo School with activities and resources that make homeschooling fun for them and easier for you.

 

27. Travel back through time to Toronto’s most historical site, Fort York.

Brush the family up on Canadian history with an online archive of Toronto’s Fort York. See the original site of Canada’s war of 1812, watch intriguing videos detailing the times and scour historical essays.

 

28. Plan a contemporary art day with inspiration from The Power Plant.

Toronto’s Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery features some of Canada’s best contemporary pieces. Take a 360° virtual tour of the exhibit and create some art of your own!

Power Plant Virtual Tour  

29. Break out the Lego and have them build their very own LegoLand.

So what if you can’t visit Toronto’s LegoLand right now? Nothing’s stopping you and the little ones from creating your own at home. Explore their Lego Build Ideas stat.

 

30. Invite the Aga Khan Museum into your home.

Get comfy with the kids and explore yet another beautifully curated Toronto museum, from the comfort of your couch with #MuseumWithoutWalls. This extensive collection features historical artefacts from Muslim civilizations. Aga Khan Virtual Tour  

31. Wander the grounds of Toronto’s enchanting Casa Loma.

Do your kids love slaying imaginary dragons or being princess of the land? Rock their make-believe worlds with a virtual stroll through Canada’s only castle built in 1914.

Casa Loma exterior
 

32. Continue to virtually tour with online exhibits as far as your fingers can click.

You and the family won’t run out of virtual entertainment any time soon. The Toronto Public Library makes sure of that with their extensive database of archival images and historical offerings.

 

33. Tune into the beautiful sounds of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra.

Social distancing hasn’t stopped Toronto’s passionate musicians from performing. For the little music aficionados in your clan, take a moment to appreciate Toronto Symphony Orchestra’s moving #SongOfComfort as they all play from their individual homes.

 

34. Take a family improv class with Second City.

Set up your own comedy club in the living room and bring out the funny in you and the kids. The Second City now offers FamilyProv, as well as online improv camps for kids and teens.

 
Let’s stay connected!

#SeeTorontoNow from home, and we hope you’ll #SeeTorontoSoon IRL

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