Indoor Games for Rainy Day Fun

Classic indoor games for rainy weather

Texas got record amounts of rain last month, and the cloudbursts have continued on into June, which means our little ones have had to occupy themselves indoors a little more than they’d like. Fortunately, Mom has a whole arsenal of indoor games that are perfect on a rainy day for keeping children corralled in a semi-orderly fashion. Next time your kids need to run off energy in a confined space, try one of these:

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If you don’t think “Simon Says” is a very challenging game, then you’ve obviously never played with the Flanders boys! They are so tricky! You can’t just do what Simon does. You’ll have to listen closely if you hope to survive. Here’s how the typical game goes at our house:

“Simon says hop on one foot.” Depending on how long they have to hop, some of our clumsier kids drop out here.

“Now switch!” Someone invariably does, and is also out.

“Simon says touch your ear!” But he says it while touching his nose and knocks out two more players who follow suit.

“Simon says to rub your tummy and pat your head.” It’s a complicated move, but most of us have this one down now.

“Now rub your head and pat your tummy.” In our rush to prove we can make this change smoothly, we fail to notice Simon didn’t issue that command. Three more get out.

“Simon says hold your breath.” At Mom’s insistence, “Simon says stop.” But not until a couple of the more determined players have started turning purple…

Another good trick: “Simon says, ‘Don’t smile!'” Even our most stoic kids find it impossible to keep a straight face when that command has been issued. 😂

Simon Says


Players sit in a circle, while one person (the Goose) walks around the outer circumference of the circle, touching each head in turn and saying, “Duck.” “Duck.” “Duck.” “Duck.”

When he says, “Goose” instead, that person must chase him around the circle and catch him before he sits down in the vacated spot. Otherwise, she becomes the new goose.



Players line up on one end of the room, and Mom sits on the other side of the room.

She covers her eyes and calls out “green light,” at which point all the players rush forward.

When she cries, “red light,” players immediately stop moving as Mom uncovers her eyes.

If she spots anybody still moving while the light is red, they must return to the starting line and begin again.

Otherwise, everybody remains motionless until the light turns green.

First person to touch Mom wins and gets to play the part of the traffic light on the next round.

Red Light


Players sit in a circle with “The Doggie” in the middle.

One person hides the “bone” (a rock or stick) behind his back while the Doggie’s eyes are closed, then the Doggie tries to guess who has it.

Once he does, that person becomes the Doggie and the game continues.



Another fun indoor game for rainy days is Musical Chairs. To play, place a circle of chairs with seats facing out in the center of the room. There should be one fewer chair than there are players.

Whoever is coordinating this game should sing or play a tune on their phone or piano. As long as the music is going, the players circle the chairs. But once the music stops, they all scramble to sit down. The player left without a seat is out of the game.

Remove one more chair and start another round. Continue until there is only one chair (and two players) left. Whoever gets the seat after that last round wins the game.



Mom calls out “Quiet Water, Still Water, 1 2 3. See how quiet and still you can be.”

She then watches to see who’ll be first to move or make noise, and calls them out when they do. The quietest, stillest player left at the end of the game wins and gets to judge the next round.

Okay, so that last one isn’t about burning off excess energy, but about giving Mom a break. Sometimes I need it!

What are your favorite indoor games to play on rainy days? Drop a comment below and tell me about them!

Still Water

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  1. At public school we loved rainy days. When it rained, we all stayed inside our classroom and played: “Heads Up! Seven Up!” First the teacher picks seven people to stand at the front of the room.The rest of the class seated at their desk, close their eyes and put their head on the desk so as not to see the seven children walking by each desk. Each of the seven chlldren gets to tap one person’s head. The person who has their head tapped has to immediately keep their head down, but raise their hand so no one else taps their head again. When any of the seven children have tapped a person’s head, they return to the front of the room. When all seven children have returned to the front of the classroom, they get to call out together: “Heads up! Seven up!” That means that everyone raises their head from their desk, and the seven people who got tapped on the head stand up beside their desk. Then the children who are standing up have fun taking turns guessing WHO tapped them on the head. They get two guesses? If they guess correctly they switch with the child that they guessed and they get to tap a head during the game. If they guess incorrectly, they sit down at their desk again. Isn’t that remarkable!! We must have played that game all through the grades at Rosedale Public School in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada: kindergarten, grade 1 to 6!!

    1. We played the same game, Elsie, only we called it “Seven Up, Thumbs Up!” I haven’t thought about that for years, but your comment immediately transported me back in time today. Thanks for the memories!

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