20 Things To Do When School is Closed in the Southwest Suburbs

School is out for winter break—but not to fear, Kidlist is here! We have some great ideas of places and things to do to keep yourself and the kids occupied during these long, cold days. When school is closed in the southwest suburbs, it is a great time to take advantage of some of the activities that you weren’t able to fit in on the busy weekend. Check out our ideas below for some fun things to do with your family!

Things To Do in the Southwest Suburbs When School Is Closed

  1. Jump over to one of the many bounce houses, open gyms, or trampoline parks in the area. It’s a great way for kids to burn off that excess energy and get some exercise.
  2. Visit the Oak Lawn Children’s Museum, the Frankfort Children’s Museum, or make it an adventure and travel out to one of the further children’s museums.
  3. Go bowling! Bowling is a lost sport, but so much fun. Most alleys have bumpers to allow the little ones to roll the ball down the lane.
  4. Try an arcade or sign up for a game of laser tag.
  5. Free indoor play areas are scattered all over the suburbs. Take a quick trip to the mall, library, McDonald’s or Chick-fil-A and let the kids play!
  6. Check out one of the indoor rock climbing walls that are in or near the southwest suburbs.
  7. Go swimming! Who says swimming is a summer activity? Most of the local pools have family swim times that allow you and your children to play together.
  8. Play a board game! Some good, competitive fun between family members never hurt anyone, and the laughs are endless.
  9. Explore a nature center. Most nature centers offer a good dose of free fun in any type of weather.
  10. Indoor miniature golf is a fun way to spend an afternoon or evening with the kids while getting in some physical activity.
  11. Drop-in at one of the local art studios and paint a project with your children.
  12. Sort through the endless amount of arts and crafts ideas on Pinterest and choose an activity to do with your children. 
  13. Build a blanket fort and watch a movie while eating popcorn.
  14. Toss on a pair of ice skates and take a few laps around the local ice rink. All the local rinks have open skate times available for all ages.
  15. Grab a blanket, make lunch or some snacks and have a picnic! Indoors in the family room, or outside in the backyard, something about eating on a blanket is always fun for the kids.
  16. Take a trip to a bookstore or toy store. Barnes & Noble and Lakeshore Learning are great stores for kids to explore and play. Try not to leave with too much merchandise!
  17. Read some classic books or check out some new ones together! Cuddle up under the covers and start a new chapter book, reading a chapter or two at a time. If your kids are too young for that, pick out a few board books they enjoy.
  18. Head over to one of the many museums or zoos throughout the Chicagoland area. Most museums and zoos have free days, especially during the colder months.
  19. Look through the Kidlist calendar for local happenings. There is always something to do!
  20. And if absolutely nothing interests you on this list, turn off the television, turn up the music, and put out random toys. You’ll be surprised with what your children can come up with when they are bored!


About the Author

Jill Kowalski
Jill is the mom of two energetic little girls, ages two and four, who keep her seriously busy. She and her husband grew up in Orland Park and are now raising their family there as well. When Jill and her family have free time, they love to check out local parks or drop-in at fests where their girls can take over a dance floor. She is always looking for cheap, yet entertaining and worthwhile things to do. When she is not wrangling her kids, Jill has a passion for starting, and sometimes finishing, do-it-yourself home improvement projects, trying out random recipes she finds on Pinterest, and organizing every nook and cranny of her life.

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