Although all branches of the Greater Joliet Area YMCA are currently closed, we are dedicated to supporting families who are looking to keep their kids active and engaged through this closure. That is why we are excited to announce our Keeping Kids Connected Initiative.
Each day, we will be posting new challenges and activities for kids of all ages using everyday materials families can find around their home. Be sure to follow the Y on Facebook and Pinterest to learn more and to take part in these fun activities…Let the games begin!
Help kids sharpen their skills ahead of Easter with exciting treasure hunt activities! You might just find something you didn’t know was lost!
LEGOS are a great way for kids to use their minds and imagination and you can also use them as tools for various learning activities.
Let your kids explore their creative side in more ways than one! Start off with a craft activity, then make your own music!
The worlds of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math can be explored through many everyday items in your home. Challenge kids to think outside the box.
Play UNO in a brand new way by adding a fitness challenge element to gameplay! This is great way to make fitness fun and exciting for kids.
A fun activity that can help kids staying moving while enhancing their problem skills. Use couches, pillows, chairs, etc. as physical tasks and add puzzles or riddles to include critical thinking stages.
Save your extra paper rolls for a fun arts and crafts project! Decorate your creation with your favorite colors and accessories.
Here’s a great way to do paintings without store-bought brushes. It can also be used as a language activity for kids learning to read.
What do you get when you combine some extra toothpicks with a bag of marshmallows? A great engineering experiment! Check out these ideas for fun projects and mini-structures.
Kids can get antsy when stuck inside on a rainy day. Here’s a great set of physical activities they can channel their energy into.
This is an important time for children to reflect and address their emotions. Journaling is a great way to help them succeed on those fronts and here you’ll find a set of topics to get them started.
A great craft activity for a rainy day. Kids can build their own carnival game out using paper plates and paper towel tubes!
Finished with your dozen eggs? Recycle the carton for a special arts and craft project! Personalize your flower with your own designs.
A combination of language and artwork can bring an exciting challenge to a traditional kids activity. Design word searches for your child or have them create their own to test you!
This is a great 30 minute fitness activity from our #LivewiththeY series for kids to follow along with.
Check out some fun crafts you can do with pasta from the cupboard.
The fresh spring air is out in full force and now is a great time to create and decorate you own wind sock! When finished, set it outside and see your design flutter on the breeze!
This activity combines reading comprehension with arts and crafts! After completing a story, use a leftover cereal box as the core of a book report display.
Exercise can also inspire the imagination! These simple yoga poses give kids an opportunity to stay fit while opening up the possibilities of a fantasy world.
Want to make eating fruit a fun time? Make an art project out of it! Learn how kids can help make ‘ladybugs’ out of strawberries, blueberries and dark chocolate chips.
Check out this step-by-step breakdown of a fun art project/science experiment that you can do at home.
Are your kids bouncing off the walls while stuck inside? Help them channel that energy into a project that will give them a new toy to bounce around.
This is a fun game you can play in the hallways of your own home! Set up a makeshift bowling lane using household items as pins and a soccer ball as a bowling ball.
Help your kids unleash their inner astronaut with a great STEAM activity that you can do at home!
If your child is showing some signs of anxiousness or struggling with stress there are plenty of do-it-yourself crafts that can help them relax.
Flying a kite is a great spring activity that families can do together. Now you can learn an easy way to make your own kite before sending it through the air!
Putting together toys is not only a fun problem-solving activity, it provides some instant tools to help kids learn math!
Spend some time being creative outdoors! Check out some ideas for games kids can design with sidewalk chalk or encourage them to draw up a brand new game.
Take out some beads and string and put together a message of hope and encouragement!
Have kids try this quick and easy craft if you have some extra coffee filters around the house. Make your monster as wacky and colorful as you like!
Spring is in full bloom and now your kids can help out the birds in your neighborhood. Make a design that you’ll enjoy looking at just as much as the birds!
Let your kids play a role in the home-cooking process by encouraging them to write down the recipes! Try out new ideas they might be inspired to cook up.
This is a fun craft that also helps kips with their problem solving skills. Use construction paper, pipe cleaners and more to make amazing array of mazes!
For kids who want to have just as much fun making their toys as they do playing with them! Try a homemade spin on the classic squishy clay.
You can use simple items like jelly beans to help kids do math activities ranging from pattern recognition to addition and subtraction!
Here’s a fun way to have some friendly competition! Serve up an ace after making your own paper plate rackets.
This activity allows kids to use a unique canvas! Decorate a coffee mug using sharpie markers.
Have your kids take a moment to write down the things that they have been thankful for over the last few weeks. You can also ask them to draw a picture of these people, places or experiences.
The Brookfield Zoo is hosting daily chats on Facebook at 11 a.m. Get a glimpse of some of their wonderful animal friends.
Another fun edition of our #LiveWithTheY series that can help your kids get out and moving!
Have your kids help put together this healthy twist on traditional chips and salsa!
Spend some activity time outdoors by blowing bubbles. Add in a game element for even more fun!
Have your kids draw an underwater scene in firm crayon and then go over the design with light blue water colors. You’ll be amazed by the oceanic result!
Help your kids get moving with a workout based on what they roll! Exercises can be adjusted to age appropriate levels.
Use an extra paper bag you may have around the house to make your favorite film/TV/literature characters in this fun arts and crafts activity!
Are your kids running out of books to read at home? Find free downloadable stories at First Book Marketplace.
Give your kids an opportunity to think outside the box with these creative writing ideas!
This exciting Y program, designed for kids ages 2-6, starts on Tuesday, May 26 and will feature Y volunteers reading stories through Zoom!
Another exciting edition of our special youth oriented virtual workout classes. Parents can also join in on the fun!
Kids can start preparing for summer by decorating a special folder that will help keep track of the activities they want to do this summer!
Create your own ‘Mission Impossible’ scene using tape and construction paper and test your young spy’s imagination and agility!
This craft activity instructs children to cut a series of handprint patterns from construction paper with the end product serving as a perfect home decoration!
Have some backyard fun using inflatable pool rings or create rings of your own!
Help your kids find pictures that match up with letters of the alphabet to put in their own alphabet book! Extend to specific words for older children.
Going outside doesn’t just have to be a physical activity, there are ways kids can use their mind as well! Check out these number themed activities for outdoor fun!
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The Y also knows planning can be a tough task for families in these challenging times, so we wanted to share a basic schedule that can help keep parents and kids organized. We encourage families to make adjustments to their needs.