Romping in the Rain
June 29, 2012

Romping in the Rain

An exerpt from Outdoors with Kids New York City

We believe that rain doesn’t need to “go away,” but rather people need to go outside despite the wet weather. Since most people don’t, however, rainy days are a rare chance to have the city virtually to yourselves. On a hot day you can go out without a coat and get wet on purpose. Otherwise, a good raincoat is essential. You and the kids should be in boots, or sandals if it’s warm. Head inside if there’s lightning or severe weather, or if anyone starts to shiver.

Here are some ideas for rainy-day fun:

Rainy Day Art

Two toddler favorites—chunky colored chalk and bathtub crayons—take on new dimensions in the rain, even for older children. Let kids channel their inner artist by creating watercolors with chalk on the sidewalks, or indulge in body art with the crayons.



Playgrounds—even tot lots—are likewise transformed in a soaking rain. Ordinarily sticky slides become quick water rides, and the sandbox is a landscape-in waiting for lakes and estuaries.


Puddle Jumping

When puddles reach a respectable width, see who can jump over them—and for how long, as puddles inexorably grow. Then, hold a contest to see who can make the biggest splash by jumping in the middle or by kicking waves out of the center. How long does it take for the puddle to fill back up, or can you keep it from filling back up at all?


Nature in the Rain

Once energy is expelled, help kids note the natural environment. Are flowers open or closed? Are pigeons in their usual perches? And where have all the butterflies gone? Use a waterproof camera to take pictures and compare them with the same places on a sunny day, after a dry spell, or during another season.


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