14 Fun OUTDOOR Rainy Day Play Activities for Kids (Toddlers Too!!)

I know that MOST rainy day activities you’ll find are all about staying indoors.. but this time, we’re going to talk about how to have OUTDOORs in the rain!

Now, it’s no secret that I tend to be a “fair weather camper” as my friend once put it (afterall, I did just put out a sweet list of things to do inside during it rains!) but there’s something to be said for finding ways to make lemonade out of lemons.. or in this case, actually finding fun things to do in the rain.

My son and I were gifted an awesome raincoat from my husbands cousin which has really helped our rain experiences, so I hope that you’ll find a good coat (or in a pinch, a poncho or even a bag with a hole in it!) and enjoy some of these awesome rainy day outdoor kids activities!

P.S. I have a super cute free printable RAINY DAY scavenger hunt for you to download at the end!

rainy day ideas for kids scavenger hunt

1. Paint with the mud

Use a paintbrush, stick, or whatever other methods you can find (including hands!) and get a bowl of mud paint – aka a bowl of mud! Then give your kids a piece of paper, or just let them paint the trees, porch and anything else they can find using the mud paint!

mud painting for rainy day fun outside with kids
He was pretty darn excited about his mud picture!

2. Give some animals a mud bath, then clean them off!

Using a bowl of mud or a really awesome mudpit, give some plastic animals a mud bath! My guy preferred to use his paint brush and paint the animals muddy… and then of course clean them in the rain!

mud bath for outside rain fun with kids
Find toys that have lots of nooks and crannies (it will take them longer to get muddy!)
wash off dirty toys with rain for rainy day activity outside
Nothing like some “fresh water” as my son calls it to clean of his dino!

3. Make a boat and decorate it!

Cut off a small one inch section of pool noodle and then decorate it! Put some sticks in the foam and attatch leaves and flowers for “sails”. See who can blow their boat across the puddle the fastest!

make a simple boat for puddle play during the rain with kids
We did a super simple pool noodle boat but it could definitely be way more awesome if you were to put more sticks in it!

4. Leapfrog to the puddles

For those who really want to enjoy the splashing, try to jump from puddle to puddle! This might only work on really rainy days, but it’s kind of fun pretending the ground is lava and the puddles are safety!

See also
DIY Camping Travel Journal [Free PDF Printable Templates!]
jump from puddle to puddle rain game for kdis outside
If there’s all one big puddle like this, leap frogging definitely is easier!

5. Use a syringe or turkey baster to transfer water from the puddles

Small things like syringes (like the kind you get from kids Tylenol bottles, not the pokey kind of course!) and turkey basters are a fun way to transfer water from super shallow areas that a cup couldn’t get to! It also gets to be quite the hand work out so is great for some fine motor skills!

6. Make rain art!

Get a paper towel and decorate it with markers, then just set it out in the rain!

My guy wanted to do this one over and over “Let’s see what the rain does to it!” he’d say as he tried out a new design! He eventually was so intrigued he just put a plain paper towel out to watch the rain drops hit it!

make rain art with markers for outside rain activity with kids
“Let’s see what the rain does to it!” (Me – well we can’t if your head is blocking it! LOL!)

7. Save the worms! (and other stranded bugs!)

Worms tend to try to avoid the water by going to dangerous dry places like roads and such, or sometimes they just end up floating on top of the deeper puddles. Encourage your kiddo to let you know (or if they’re old enough, do it themselves!) when they see a bug or worm who needs help, and show them how to safely move it to a safe spot!

I am an absolute bleeding heart when it comes to animals and bugs, so I hope to pass along the compassion for every life (no matter how small!) by encouraging my kiddo to move worms and other bugs that get displaced by the rain!

8. Create rain soup!

This is a staple no matter where we go – sensory soup! We normally just fill up a bucket and the kids can add whatever nature items they find, however with rain, it makes it even more fun! Ask you kiddo to collect “fresh water” as my son calls it and find some nature goodies to mix in!

See also
Camp Story Sticks Craft for Fun Camp Pretend Play!
make rain soup for outdoor rain activity with kids
If you’ve ever watched Blippi, you’ll know about “Sink or Float”. It is definitely fun for kids to collect some rain, and see what sinks or floats in their soup!

9. Build a bridge across a deep puddle

Gather some nearby rocks and sticks to make a bridge across a puddle for their toys to walk over! Your kiddo might need help depending on their age, but it’s a fun time to talk about things that sink or float, and how to use the materials the right way to build a mini bridge!

10. Make a mudpie

I’m sure you know this, but do you know how much fun a kid can have with this simple idea? I could probably not even mention ANY other ideas besides this and your kiddo would be happy during the whole rain storm!

If you have some to spare, get some bowls and spoons, then ask them to make a mud pie1

makea mud pie with kids during rain
Mudpies are a great rainy day way to find some good mud and garnish!

11. Observe the types of leaves that collect the raindrops (and talk about why!)

This is probably more interesting for the big kids (….like me!) but it’s fun to talk about which kind of plans “funnel” the rain drops, and comparing those leaf designs to other plants!

look at leaves during rain to see what's happening with kids
Checking out the lupine leaves in the garden, and seeing how the water collects on their leaves but not the sunflowers nearby!

12. See who can make the best muddy footprint

If shoes are on, this will still work! See who can find the best texture of mud – not too runny, but also in the right kind of dirt – and see who can create the darkest, most detailed mud print! It’s interesting to experiment with different kinds of mud!

make muddy footprints in rain on paper for rain outdoor activity
Our mud was a little too heavy – it didn’t stick to his feet, but we did get some brown water prints. And if you’re a kid, that’s enough!

13. Collect rainwater in various containers

The fun of this one was looking around and seeing where the water was collecting and funneling down. He ended up loving our gutter drain as it was lots of water easy!

collect rain water with various containers for outdoor rain activity
Challenge them to fill up some large container! P.S. Make it a big one so that it takes a loooonnng time!

14. And of course… catch some rain in your mouth!

I STILL do this, and I’m 29 years old! The simple joy of feeling the rain drops hit your tongue is always so fun!

See also
53 Favorite Family Campfire Songs [PDF Printables!]
catch rain in your mouth for fun rain activity
Yum!

Here’s a free printable rainy day outdoor scavenger hunt to get your kids excited to go out!

Not going to lie, I was skeptical at first of how much you could really do in the rain… but it’s actually sort of magical! And even if I hated it, it would have been worth it to see the joy in my son’s eyes when I said I was going to come out and play in the rain with him! We stayed up past his nap (while his sisters were sleeping!) for some awesome rain play!

Click this link to be taken to the PDF of this Rainy Day Scavenger Hunt so you can download one for yourself!

rainy day outdoor scavenger hunt

Check out these other fun things to do with your kids outdoors!

RAIN PLAY IDEAS FOR KIDS
rainy day outdoor rain activities for kids
RAIN ACTIVITIES FOR KIDS

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