At-Home Activities for Kids

Looking for things to do at home with the kids? Here are some reading and activity suggestions and online resources recommended by our Children's Librarians.

Visit What's Live Online for scheduled read-aloud events.

Art Gallery of Hamilton: Kids/Youth programming includes storytimes and art projects all about different styles of art.

BiblioVideo: A project of the Canadian Children's Book Centre, this Youtube channel is full of online author talks and book readings

Deaf-Hearing Communication Centre: ASL Stories, eBooks, and other ASL educational resources for parents and kids.

Harry Potter at Home: This fun site of games, articles, and activities now also features read-aloud chapters of the book. Listen to actor Daniel Radcliffe read Chapter 1.

Jbrary: A directory of online storytimes and resources for songs and rhymes.

KidLit TV: Shows, podcasts, read alouds, storytimes, crafts & activities, and more that celebrate children's books and connect you with the people who create them.

Storytime Online: Listen to famous actors and personalities like Betty White, Oprah, and Kristin Bell read children’s books.

Access Mars: Use VR technology to explore the real surface of Mars, as recorded by NASA’s Curiosity rover.

Canada’s Wonderland: Take a virtual ride at home on the coasters and attractions of Canada’s Wonderland.

Earth Cam: Live cameras all over the world allow you to travel and explore from home. Our favourites include a nesting Osprey, and some baby Falcons.

Food Farm 360°: Online virtual tours of Canadian farms, compatible with VR.

Harry Potter - A History of Magic: Experience the British Library’s Happy Potter exhibit, now available online.

The Louvre: Online tours of select exhibits.

McMichael Canadian Art Collection: An electronic resource cataloguing the McMichael’s permanent collection of Canadian art

Monterey Bay Aquarium: Live cams allow you to visit everything from jellyfish to sea otters.

Explore Ontario Museums: Online tours.

Ripley’s Aquariums: Daily live events with aquarium animals and downloadable educational materials.

San Diego Zoo: Live cameras in various zoo exhibits, paired with educational resources.

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History: Self-guided tours of select current and past exhibits.

Toronto Zoo: The Zoo To You platform offers live virtual learning, parent resources, and links to Youtube videos and a podcast hosted by Zookeepers.

Virtual Museum: Google Arts & Culture virtual tours

Cosmic Kids Yoga: Youtube yoga lessons designed for young children.

Monterey Bay Aquarium: Calming ocean videos and guided meditations to bring relaxation.

ROCK EarlyON Virtual Programs & Support: Your local child development experts are available online for conversation and interactive programming.

CBC Kids: Play free kids games, watch videos, and explore activities, quirky quizzes and fun facts.

Breakout EDU Fun @Home: Problem solving games for K-12 with educational topics.

Draw Every Day with JJK: author and illustrator Jarrett J Krosoczka posts daily drawing lessons on Youtube.

Harry Potter at Home: Fun articles, quizzes, puzzles and plenty more for first-time readers, as well as those already familiar with the wizarding world.

Hour of Code: Coding tutorials that teach computer science while kids create games and animations.

The Kennedy Centre presents Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems: Draw, doodle, and visit Mo’s studio virtually over three weeks of online drawing lessons.

Math Playground: Free online math games and puzzles, for grades 1-6.

National Geographic Kids: Games, articles, and videos all about animals and the environment.

PBS Kids: Online games featuring popular TV characters.

PBS Kids Design Squad Global: Videos, games and design challenges to promote engineering and design skills.

Pete the Cat, Harper Collins Children’s Books: Songs, videos, and activities about everyone’s favourite cat.

Todd Parr Fun!: Printable and online activities from always positive author Todd Parr. Be sure to check out the Things That Make You Feel Good activity book.

Tourism Burlington Puzzle Fun: Online puzzles of varying difficulty that feature Burlington.

Learn at Home: Resources for elementary and secondary students from the Ontario Ministry of Education.

Amazing Educational Resources: A searchable directory of online educational resources, with new items being added all the time.

Children’s Book Council: Book publishers have created a wealth of content to support educators, librarians, booksellers, parents, and caregivers.

Bedtime Math: Daily prompts to make math easy and fun to talk about. Try adding into your bedtime routine!

Exploratorium COVID-19 Science Toolbox: videos and articles about the science of coronavirus, for kids seeking to understand.

Khan Academy: A non-profit providing free education through fun lessons, like “Imagineering in a Box.”

Math is Fun: Online math resource with helpful explanations of many concepts, great for caregivers trying to help with math homework.

NASA STEM @Home: Science, tech, engineering, and math activities for families with kids in grades K-4.

National Film Board Education: Open access to films on subjects that tie into curricula, activities, and more through their Learning at Home site.

Ocean School: Four full weeks of lessons and videos all about biology, ecology, and engineering in ocean science, curated by the National Film Board.

Ontario Science Centre - Science at Home: From DIY experiments to science activities to educational resources and free, family-friendly films.

PBS LearningMedia: PreK-12 Resources for Emergency Closings, curated collections of lessons, videos, and activities at each grade level.

Sci Show Kids: Explore technology, earth and space science, animals, and experiments with awesome video playlists.

TVO in the Classroom: Educational videos, articles, and games for students in grades K-12

TVO mPower: Math games for K-6, aligned with the Ontario curriculum

Vroom by Bezos Family Foundation: A free app and website with brain building tips for kids 5 and under.

Cozy Sundays: Grab a blanket, get cozy, and enjoy an episode of a family-friendly TV show on Kanopy Kids, a movie from Hoopla, or a read-along on TumbleBook Library.

Book Club Mondays: Check out an eBook from our Overdrive collection. Every Monday, read a few chapters of your novel out loud as a family. Don't forget to have someone recap what you read last time.

Game night Tuesdays: Embrace your competitive side. There’s so many different games you can play!

  • Board games
  • Card games: Crazy Eights, Go Fish, War
  • Paper and pencil games: Tic Tac Toe, Hangman, Squares
  • Create your own board game
  • Create your own matching memory game
  • Tray memory game
  • Learn Chess

Challenge Wednesdays: Get inventive and think outside the box to complete a family challenge.

  • ABC scavenger hunt
  • Fort building challenge
  • Learn 5 words in a new language (use Transparent Language Online to help)
  • Recycling bin challenge (Raid your recycling bin for containers and boxes, pick 5 items and combine them into a new invention)
  • Loose Parts challenge (Find 3 unrelated items, like toothpicks, yarn, and toilet paper rolls, everyone gets 10 minutes to combine those 3 things into something useful)

Active Thursdays: Get moving today! Some of our favourite ways to get going:

  • Borrow an album from Hoopla and have a dance-off
  • Hide and Seek
  • Backyard obstacle course

Kindness Fridays: What can you do today to be kind to those around you, and those who have to keep their distance right now?

  • Write a nice message or draw a fun picture and hang it in your window
  • Write encouraging sayings on the sidewalk with chalk
  • Rake a neighbour’s lawn
  • Do someone else’s chores
  • Call, text, or email someone you care about
  • Write a nice note for someone in your home

Creative Saturdays: Get imaginative and resourceful, and let your creative side shine on Saturdays!

  • Invent a new snack
  • Make an indoor “campsite”
  • Create a puppet from an old sock
  • Turn lunch into a picnic
  • Make your own picturebook
  • Write a poem

BPL Kids Monthly Literacy Calendar

BrainFuse: Personalized elearning - free with your BPL card!

1000 Books Before Kindergarten

Kanopy Kids - stream movies using your library card

Explore TumbleBooks online books for kids

Streaming movies on Hoopla

APPLY for your library card online now