30 Things to Do at Home with Your Teenager

From birth to early childhood, children grow up completely dependent and reliant on their parents for their needs. Based on Walinga and Stangor’s Introduction to Psychology however, certain chemical and emotional changes take place in a child’s body during puberty that can alter their behaviors completely. This may include their slow and subtle withdrawal from their parents, as they seek for more independence growing up.

Because these adolescents can go through rapid emotional and mental changes, it’s important to establish well-balanced support and communication through the family unit.

To make them feel at-home and secure, here are indoor activities to do with your teens at home.

Regardless of how busy we are, it’s vital that we are still able to instill a sense of calm to our kids, especially at this stage in their lives. Without further ado, here are some indoor activities for teens, divided into separate categories.

Creativity and Exploration

As children grow up, their interests change, and so do their hobbies and pastimes. The toys they used to like and play with all the time will no longer serve their purpose. At the same time, the things they used to enjoy may no longer be captivating enough for them to hold on to. If you’re looking for some activities that’ll hopefully help them find new hobbies, passions, and eventually their true selves, here are creative indoor activities to try with your teens.

Play Piano

The piano is such a powerful, yet calming instrument that can aid in taking your mind off stress. Beginner or not, playing this instrument together can be a nice pastime to get used to, especially when daily life becomes overwhelmingly chaotic. 

Try Something You’d Never Do

At this point in their lives, when they’re growing up and craving for more independence, our role is to simply guide them so they would find their dreams themselves. 

If you’re stuck at home, and are looking for some indoor activities to do with your teens, why not invite them to try out something they’d never do? Whether it’s as simple as dressing up differently or eating an entirely different meal, this exercise will encourage your children to step out of their comfort zones and try something new. 

Make Some Cookies

Everyone needs to have a treat from time to time. Because of the different changes your child may be going through because of puberty, they may need to feel a sense of home they know they can be secured in. In that case, why not bake some chunky chocolate chip cookies? Their fragrance is simply heavenly. Plus, they may just be the right kind of comfort your teen needs after a long day at school.

Change Your Hairstyle

Times change, and so can your teen’s interests and ideal hairstyle. During this stage of development, they may want to switch up their looks in different ways, one of which is their hairstyle. 

From donning a full set of bangs, they may want to transition to a side-swept fringe or transform their flat black or brown hair into a golden blonde. Helping your teen decide and achieve their dream hair can grow your relationship and pave the way for more open communication in the future.

Try Out Cross-Stitch

Cross-stitching isn’t only for old people; it’s a great skill to have if you love personalizing your things or making your own art. Together with your teen, pick out some patterns you’re interested in, and gather the supplies.

Whether it’s your favorite cartoon character, an image of animals you adore, or a beautiful still life that’s screaming with personality, exploring this hobby with your teen can let them see just what magic cross-stitch can produce and show the both of you a good time.

Paint a Portrait

They say an artist’s work is completely subjective, and we agree with that completely. Because of all the things your teen is going through in school, with their relationships, or with themselves, they may often find themselves confused and unsure of how to feel. Help them express their true emotions by painting a portrait. 

It can be as simple as a still life or as complex as an abstract painting. You may also be interested in painting your most favorite memories. Skilled or amateur, painting a portrait with your teen can help them release a lot of pent-up energy, which needs to be addressed.

Take an Online Class Together

Do you and your teen happen to have a shared interest? Perhaps a similar hobby that both of you want to explore? Because of the latest advancements in technology, it’s now possible to take an online course, and be officially certified.

Whether it be about household skills and techniques, like cooking and baking, or professional skills that can be used for work, like marketing or computer science, taking an online class together is one way to bring you closer together and pave the way for more opportunities in the future.

Learn the Guitar

They say music can heal the soul. If you have some free time and a guitar lying around, then why not take this time to learn it? This string instrument’s a staple, and you can hear it in almost every song ever made. Just taking the time with your teen to learn the chords and figure out how to correctly strum it can already serve as a bonding experience for the both of you.

Should they ever pursue it professionally, you know who they have to thank for giving them the opportunity.

Bake and Decorate a Cake

Everybody loves cake. They’re a sweet and indulgent dessert that feels good to have every once in a while. Know how to make them better? Make them your own. 

Start with a box mix or make them from scratch, so you can customize it to your liking. Red velvet, chocolate, vanilla, or birthday cake—it’s all up to you. Whatever you go for, there’s something special over baking your own cake, and decorating it to your style that makes the whole thing worthwhile.

Adulting 101

When you have growing teens in your home, it’s important to acknowledge the crucial stage of their life when they’re turning into budding adults. Here are some indoor activities to try out that’ll help your teens embrace these changes, while preparing them for the stage that lies ahead: adulting.

Wash a Car

Washing the car can be a tedious chore for anyone, but it’s something that can help teens learn a lesson about maintaining a car. Instead of letting them do the whole thing on their own, fully commit to the task, and divide the work between you. Not only will you teach them how to be responsible, you also teach them how cleaning the car can be fun to do with their parents, too.

Start a Garden

Plants can serve as a peaceful safe haven your teen can run to on a hectic day. Starting a garden together on your own front yard or backyard can be a lot of fun, and it can allow you to reap a lot of benefits in the kitchen and in your relationship. 

Enjoy picking out the different fruits, vegetables, flowers, and crops you’d like to grow, and learn more about your teen’s interests along the way. No matter what happens, you can find gardening and taking care of your plots to be the next thing you and your teen can bond over.

General Cleaning

Cleaning isn’t necessarily a fun activity to do with your teen, but sharing the chores for one afternoon can build camaraderie. Dividing the tasks equally amongst you will teach your kid a lesson about maintaining one’s home, as well as how one should do it. In the process, you may also discover small quirks about them, all the while preparing them for the future.

Organize the Kitchen Pantry

The kitchen is the heart of any home, as that is where the food is made and where guests end up huddling at. If you currently have a large or walk-in pantry that could use some help reorganizing, then why not make a whole pantry redo as an activity with your teen? 

Purchase some clear containers you can label, and slowly transition your ingredients into those uniformed containers. You can also include rotating spice racks and levellers to improve the aesthetic, as well as and make them easier to spot. Before you know it, you’ll have a beautifully laid out pantry complete with labels, baskets, and clear containers that’ll make both you and your teen proud.

Try Out New Recipes

Cooking is a skill that can be learned. If you’re feeling creative and are interested in new ways to spice up your diet or everyday meals, you may want to consider trying out new recipes with your teen. Work closely together on the instructions, and delegate parts of the entire meal equally. 

Serve the rest of the family for lunch or dinner, and enjoy the rest of the day in each other’s presence. Because the both of you put together a well thought-out meal, your teen will learn about the beauty of serving the family, as well as how fun it is to do it with you.

Teach Them About Money

As your child grows while they age, so will their allowance and need for money. To prepare them in advance, it would be a good idea to teach them a few things about money. 

For this one, you can give them tasks that’ll help them earn money as a reward, or help them save a small amount of money each day after school. Regardless of how you choose to approach this, your child will slowly begin to understand the value of money, thinking twice before they spend on something. At the same time, they’ll learn about the art of budgeting and the importance of saving.

DIY and Crafting

Part of growing up is learning to do things on your own without the help of a parent or someone in charge. While this kind of indoor activities with your teens may be as simple as performing a few DIY jobs or some arts and crafts projects, they can serve as the foundation for the future when actual skills are needed to perform certain tasks.

Room Redecoration

As these teens grow old, they may realize that they have grown out of their current bedrooms, and are in need of a revamp. If this is something you and your teen are interested in, consider taking on a room redecoration project. Whether it’s as simple as repainting the walls or replacing their old furniture, this idea is a nice way to bond over your kid’s transition to adulthood.

Repurpose and Upcycle Old Clothing

Just like your teen’s bedroom, their clothes can feel a little dated and behind. And, because they’re also going through some physical changes, they could also use some new clothes that flatter their physique. Instead of buying a brand new, full priced set of clothes, why not DIY some old or thrifted clothing?

Look through a couple of pieces your teen no longer wants in its current state, and discover ways to refresh them. All it takes is a fashion inspiration and a dash of creativity to give your teen a renewed sense of style and a closer, more open bond with their parents.

Decorate a Wall

Got a blank wall in your teen’s room or in your common living areas? Decorating a wall is simple, and it’s completely up to you how you want to personalize this space in your home. You can either paint it, decorate it with plants, or incorporate a stylish, yet functional shelving statement piece by it. Whatever it may be, doing this with your teen serves as an expressive activity the both of you can enjoy. 

Build Furniture

Assembling ready-made furniture is one thing, but creating and designing one from scratch is an entirely different scenario. Together with your teen, let your creativity flourish, and create a piece that’s either simple and easy to make, or completely artistic and personalized to their taste. You can build it as a statement piece for their room, or a functional addition to your home. Regardless of what you end up making, creating something like your own custom-made furniture will show your teen that anything’s possible as long as you put your mind to it.

Sew a Blanket

Sometimes, all we need is a warm hug or a blanket to make us feel safe amidst chaos. Whether or not you have a knack at stitching, making your own quilted blanket can be a lot of fun since it’s easy and customizable. Together with your teen, go through a bunch of patterns at your local fabric store or make use of old, unused clothing. You can even include previous works, if you have any, to represent certain scenarios in your life you want to remember.

Leisure and Entertainment

Everybody needs some sort of entertainment to stay sane. Whether it be games, movies, or whatever suits your fancy, it’s important to be able to find something you can do to have a good time. At a time like this, when teens feel unsure of a lot of things going on in their lives and bodies, it’s nice to explore different indoor activities to have fun.

Have a Family Cook-Off

Cooking may be a test of skill, however it can also showcase one’s personality using the best of their abilities. If you have some free time on your hands, and you’re looking to bond and learn more about your teen, simply challenge them to a family cook-off. 

It doesn’t have to be complicated. The only rule is for each of you to create your own dish, inspired by what represents you the most. Then, have the rest of the family members judge your meals based on presentation and taste. At the end of the activity, you may come to realize that you understand your teen a lot more, while possibly teaching them a few things about cooking.

Have a Movie Marathon

Different movies have different genres, varying messages, and moral lessons to pick up on. For a whole day activity that’s both educational and largely entertaining, schedule a movie marathon with your teen. Feature a bunch of films, ranging from comedy and romance, to mysteries and horror flicks. No matter what you end up going with, this activity is one that’ll guarantee you both to enjoy and want to repeat it as soon as possible.

Throw a BBQ Party

BBQ parties are great, as it allows everyone to huddle over a spot in a mix of food, drinks, mingling, and laughter. What makes this a suitable activity for a teen is that it lets your child find their own element and allows them to let loose from all the stress and pressure that rests on their shoulders. 

Play some music, and dance the night away with a combination of your favorite tracks from then and now. While this activity alone can be a great way to spend time with your kids, it’s also an avenue to open up more fun activities to do together.

Work on a Jigsaw Puzzle Together

Puzzles are a great exercise for the brain, especially if it takes a lot to accomplish. If you ever happen to have a lot of time on your hands, and are looking for an activity, which is both relaxing and exciting to work on, consider trying out a jigsaw puzzle with your teen. Five hundred-piece puzzles are great for this, but you can also take on a thousand-piece puzzle for a bit more challenge. 

Lay all the pieces out on a large surface, and easily spend hours putting together a piece that will remind you of all the fun and hard work you put into making it happen. Display it in one of your common living areas around your home, so you and your teen can have a reminder of the time you had as you pass by it.

Host a Game Night

Games are fun and exciting, regardless of what age you’re in. So for this idea, host a game night with the family. You can choose to play with cards, board games, or even video games if you’re feeling up to it. Allow your teen to handpick a couple of games they’re interested in, and try them out if you haven’t already.

Not only will having nights like these make the family bond stronger, it’ll also show your teen that they don’t necessarily need to leave the house to have some fun.

Host a Book Club

Novels are great at immersing you into a world of imagination and creativity. Whether they open your eyes to the world before you or take you to a completely different realm, hosting a book club once a week with your teen is a nice and exciting way to learn about different perspectives. It’s also a nice way to sneak a peek into your child’s developing personality and taste.

Binge-Watch a Series

Watching an entire series in one seating is a treat we all deserve to have time for every once in a while. Whether or not you do get to finish the entire show, spending the time to do this with your teen every now and then is something they’ll surely appreciate and remember. Besides, aside from just thinking about whether your kid will enjoy it or not, consider how you may also want to relax and enjoy a little downtime after work.

Memorabilia Making

Time really does fly fast, and while your teen’s still young, it’s important to inculcate values early on so they know to make the most out of their everyday life.

In order to teach them the value of loved ones, the memories we hold, as well as the precious moments in time we can’t take back, here are a couple of sentimental indoor activities for you and your teens to make your relationship grow fonder.

Create a Time Capsule

Time can fly by really fast. Before you know it, your teen will be in and out of middle school, highschool, and then college. It’s best to treasure the time we have now, and what better way to seal all these memories than in a time capsule? 

Gather up some photos of the family, your child’s friends, as well as small memorabilias of the most important moments you and your teen never want to forget. Seal them up in a box, and bury them in the backyard. While you work on compiling these items, you’re also taking a trip down memory lane as you look back and reminisce on all the good times you’ve shared.

Make a Scrapbook

Today is the oldest we have ever been and the youngest we ever will be. While children are still growing, it’s important to teach them the value of the present, as it is something we can never take back. 

If you’re thinking of thoughtful indoor activities to do with your teens, why not make a scrapbook together? For the whole afternoon, fill the pages with memorable images and notes from your child’s favorite moments. As a finishing touch, include some small keepsakes and decorations for a lively and diverse spread that’s easy on the eyes. No matter how silly or child-like the entire scrapbook ends up looking like, it’ll be a nice memory your teen will be able to look back on and thank you for.

Handwrite Some Letters

The friends and relationships your teen has now will not be the same in a couple of years, especially when they go off to college. While your kid may already know this, it’s important to acknowledge their feelings as a parent, so you can form a trusting relationship with each other. 

For this activity, encourage them to pour their heart out into writing some letters for their closest friends. You can also ask them to write one for those who may have caused them harm, so they can slowly forgive and let go of baggage, should they have any. During this point in their lives, when everything’s vast and rapidly changing, it’s important to be there for them as a parent, so you can fortify a bond that will remain strong even years down the line.

Fun Time Indoor Activities with Your Teens

While your teens may want to have a sense of independence during puberty, it’s important to reassure them that you’ll be there for them in their crucial stages. No matter what point they’re at in life, having a good relationship with them can help your kids grow into strong and capable individuals in the future.

And, while we all want to teach them lessons about life and guide them in reaching their goals, it’s just as valuable to have indoor activities both you and your teens will enjoy doing together, and we hope that we were able to help you achieve that through this article.

Indeed, life is short and moments are fleeting. Let’s make the most of the time we have with our teens while we still can, and hopefully, they become all that we yearn for them and more.

Laura is the force behind Gathered Again, transforming family gatherings into unforgettable memories with expert tips and a heart full of passion. Join her mission to celebrate the magic of family connections, one event at a time.

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