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6 of the Best Boredom Busting Activity Books for Kids

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This list of activity books for kids was originally published in our kid lit newsletter, The Kids Are All Right. Sign up for it here to get kid lit news, reviews, deals, and more!


Summer is here, and you might be wondering what types of activities can keep your kids occupied that don’t remind them of school worksheets. Here are some fun activity books for kids that I’ve noticed recently!

Print, Pattern, Sew

Print, Pattern, Sew by Jen Hewett

I used this book with my daughter last summer and we learned how to carve blocks and then how to stamp on fabric and create simple patterns for sewing. I would suggest adult supervision with these projects, but they are super fun to do and a great activity to do as a family!

Give This Book a Title by Jarrett Lerner

I love this collection of fun, open-ended writing and drawing prompts by Jarrett Lerner. For example, in the Finish This Comic section, young writers are inspired to write and illustrate a six-panel story. Following How to Draw instructions will encourage kids to find their own drawing styles. This book is filled with activities that will keep kids entertained and busy.

Kwame Alexander's Free Write

Kwame Alexander’s Free Write: A Poetry Notebook by Kwame Alexander

Newbery Medalist Kwame Alexander shares his writing tips for anyone who wants to discover the power of poetry. This book is bursting with cool activities, poetry starters, inspirational quotes, and lots of space to create.

The Ultimate At-Home Activity Guide

The Ultimate At-Home Activity Guide by Mike Lowery

This is such a fun book filled with endless possibilities of activities to do at home, including throwing a virtual party, holding family Olympics, learning a magic trick, making a flip book, and many more. Doodles, jokes, and entertaining tips enliven the crafts, games, adventures, projects, and creative boredom-busting activities the whole family will enjoy. Most call for common crafting gear and household items, ensuring hours of fun at the tip of your fingers.

Illustration School: Let's Draw a Story

Illustration School: Let’s Draw! by Sachiko Umoto

This book was created by one of Japan’s most beloved artists and contains a book with simple step-by-step instructions for drawing the cute animals, plants, and people in this book. There is also a pad of paper in this easily transportable set that is bound together with a thick elastic to keep everything together. I love this illustration style.

How Do You Doodle?: Drawing My Feelings and Emotions

How Do You Doodle?: Drawing My Feelings and Emotions by Elise Gravel

I adore Elise Gravel’s books and her quirky and fun illustrations (one of my favorites is If Found…Please Return to Elise Gravel). How Do You Doodle? has over 40 doodle games for you to doodle, scribble, and draw out your thoughts, emotions, and feelings. I love that Elise encourages you to draw or write whatever you want in this book — cute drawings, silly drawings, even ugly drawings — there is no judgment, only an encouragement to express yourself.

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