35 Fun & Engaging Activities for An 8 Year Old Child

Top 35 Activities for 8-Year-Old Kids

8-year-old children are in a crucial developmental stage where their cognitive abilities, social skills, and creativity blossom. Engaging them in educational and creative activities not only enhances their motor skills but also fosters a deeper understanding of their strengths. Social interactions play a pivotal role during this period, and participation in both individual and group activities provides a secure environment for honing skills such as discussion, debate, and teamwork. Encouraging these experiences at this age establishes a solid foundation for their future personal and academic growth, laying the groundwork for lifelong learning and social adaptability.

Educational and Learning Activities

We’ve put together a list of great activities that can be educational for your kids, and open them up to learning a few other skills as well (1).

1. Chatting With Alphabets

Considered one of the easiest writing activities for 8-year-olds, you can mix it up with some conversations as well.

How to Do:

One child writes a word on a whiteboard. The next child needs to write another word which begins with the last letter of the previous one. This cycle continues for as long as it can go.

What Does It Teach?

This activity allows your child’s vocabulary to expand quickly because he gets to learn new words and their meanings from his friends.

Chatting With Alphabets

2. Decode the Message

Turn your kid into a detective with this mysterious and fun-filled activity.

How to Do:

Use simple substitution cyphers such as alphabet numbers or replace previous alphabets in the message, and send the decoded message around. Let your child rack his brains to find the right message, with some hints from you.

What Does It Teach?

Your child learns how to think out of the box and to write simple sentences in different ways.

Decode The Message

3. Brain Teasers

This is one of the many fantastic math activities for 8-year-olds. Your kid will be absolutely ecstatic while solving them.

How to Do:

Use the Internet or books from the library to put together a bunch of math-based riddles for your child. These could even be descriptive puzzles that need math skills to solve them.

What Does It Teach?

Your child begins to look at numbers beyond arithmetic operations and understands how real-life scenarios can make use of mathematical understanding as well.

Brain Teasers

4. Writing a Letter

A long-lost art in today’s age, don’t let it fade away. Teach your kid to write a letter, for he can learn a lot from it.

How to Do:

Ask your child to think of someone he hasn’t spoken to in a long time. It could be a friend or even a relative. Let him write a letter to that person describing events of his own life and enquiring about theirs.

What Does It Teach?

Communication is a two-way street, and writing a letter helps your child express his feelings better, as well as be curious and interested in other people.

Writing A Letter

5. Find the Location

Let your child brush up his geography skills with this wonderful group activity.

How to Do:

Hang a large world map on the wall. Mention the names of countries, cities, mountains, or any other geographical entity. The first child to point out the correct location of the same on the map gets points.

What Does It Teach?

Children will begin to remember locations easily and start making connections between names and their possible locations.

Find The Location

6. Paragraph Drawing

Combine literacy and art in the “Paragraph Drawing” activity.

How to Do:

Choose a paragraph from a children’s story that aligns with your child’s reading and drawing proficiency. Have your child read the selected paragraph aloud, ensuring comprehension. Ask your child to illustrate the described situation using colored pens, connecting the text with visual representation. Engage in a discussion about the drawing and encourage your child to express their interpretation. Tailor the complexity of the paragraph based on your child’s skill level for an optimal learning experience.

What Does It Teach?

This activity promotes coordination between listening skills, cognitive abilities, and creativity while encouraging self-expression and boosting self-esteem.

7. Captions and More

Foster creativity and composition skills through the “Captions and More” activity.

How to Do:

Collect old photographs, colored pens, and a scrapbook or paper. Have your child choose photos that hold special memories for them. For each photo, ask your child to create a descriptive and creative caption that captures the essence of the memory. Assist your child in arranging the photos and captions in the scrapbook, creating a personalized memory collection. Spend time together discussing the memories associated with each photo, fostering a bond through shared experiences.

What Does It Teach?

This activity promotes creative thinking, strengthens composition skills, and encourages reflection on cherished memories.

8. Weather Wall

Introduce your child to weather symbols with the interactive “Weather Wall” activity.

How to Do:

Gather a whiteboard or chart paper, markers or colored pens. Draw weather icons representing different weather conditions such as sunny, rainy, cloudy, and windy. Each day, ask your child to identify the day’s weather either by observation or through a weather app. Have your child mark the date under the corresponding weather icon on the board or paper. Reinforce learning by verbally discussing the weather icons and conditions.

What Does It Teach?

This activity enhances weather awareness, and promotes visual and cognitive learning.

9. Draw Idioms

Engage your child in the fascinating world of idioms, expressions with figurative meanings.

How to Do:

Begin by explaining what idioms are, providing examples like ‘better late than never’ or ‘no pain, no gain.’ Encourage the use of idioms in daily conversations with your child. Share idioms and discuss their meanings together. Select an idiom and ask your eight-year-old to draw both the literal interpretation and the non-literal, figurative meaning of the phrase. After the drawing is complete, engage in a discussion about the idioms, reinforcing their understanding and usage.

What Does It Teach?

This activity enhances language understanding, encourages creative expression, and makes the learning of idioms enjoyable.

Art and Craft Activities

Letting your child unleash his creativity from time to time is necessary as well, which is why we have listed out some exciting art and craft activities for him.

1. Origami Primer

This might be one of the most popular fun activities for 8-year-olds, but it is also a great skill to learn at an early age.

How to Do:

Print out origami instructions from the Internet, or get an origami kit for your child. Start with easy shapes and help him complete them. Encourage him to paint the origami to make them even more attractive.

What Does It Teach?

Spatial and visual perception are great when developed at an early age, and the art of origami can open up your child’s mind to all the wonderful possibilities it holds.

Origami Primer

2. Cardboard Creations

Wondering what to do with all those cardboard boxes you’ve got? Well, let your child handle them for you.

How to Do:

Put together an array of boxes, sellotape, glue, safety scissors, and other material. Let your child make different items out of the boxes, right from ovens to televisions;  things that he can sit in, or even a pet house.

What Does It Teach?

Creativity can be expressed even in old waste items, and this activity encourages your child to think beyond typical play items while giving him a chance to do better.

Cardboard Creations

3. Beetle Dice Drawing

Turn the act of drawing a beetle into one of the coolest creative group activities for 8-year-olds with this brilliant twist.

How to Do:

Assign a number from 1 to 6 to each beetle part, such as 1 for a leg, 2 for an eye, 3 for spots, and so on. Each kid needs to roll the dice and draw that particular body part, working together to finish the drawing before others.

What Does It Teach?

Apart from understanding the beetle’s structure better, it helps kids learn the importance of perseverance to achieve what they want.

Beetle Dice Drawing

4. Bridge Construction

Let your children work together in building the strongest bridge that they can.

How to Do:

Gather as many ice cream sticks as you can. Let your children refer to a drawing of the bridge and glue the sticks together to make one. Once done, place some coins on it and note how many it can hold before collapsing down.

What Does It Teach?

Children will learn the importance of logical thinking and making detailed observations while building, while others can come up with ideas to improve on it.

Bridge Construction

5. Aeroplane Challenge

Bring on pure nostalgia with paper aeroplanes and let your child start crafting these right away.

How to Do:

Let each child pick a paper of his favourite colour. Teach them to fold it the right way to form an aeroplane. Each child then throws it as far as he can, while you measure the distance.

What Does It Teach?

Along with making their toys, the kids will learn to give their best with each consecutive performance, as they look for better ways to make an aeroplane and ensure it flies as far as it can.

Aeroplane Challenge

6. Batik Painting

Explore the world of artistic expression with Batik painting, a wax-resist dyeing technique used in both paintings and fabric dying. 

How to Do:

Purchase a Batik painting kit online, ensuring it includes all necessary materials. Encourage your child to experiment with different patterns, using the wax-resist technique. Provide a variety of colors for your child to use, fostering creativity in their artistic endeavors. Let your child freely express themselves through Batik painting, exploring their creativity.

What Does It Teach?

This activity promotes creative self-expression, fostering the development of artistic skills and building essential self-confidence.

7. Hanging Plate

Transforming an old, used plate into a decorative piece becomes an enjoyable and beneficial activity known as the Hanging Plate project. 

How to Do:

Select an old, unused plate for transformation into a decorative piece. Provide acrylic paints for your child to use in adding vibrant colors to the plate. Encourage your child to express their creativity by designing and decorating the plate. Once the painting is complete, find a suitable way to hang the plate, creating a unique decorative piece.

What Does It Teach?

This activity enhances cognitive abilities, promotes self-expression, and introduces the concepts of recycling and upcycling.

8. DIY Mini Garden

Embark on a botanical adventure with the DIY Mini Garden project, creating an indoor oasis using an old plastic bathtub or a large flower pot and other decorative elements. 

How to Do:

Choose an old plastic bathtub or a large flower pot as the base for the mini garden. Obtain soil and seeds from a local florist or gardening supply store. Enhance the aesthetic by adding decorative items to the mini garden. Guide your child in planting the seeds and nurturing the mini garden. Encourage your child to observe and take pleasure in the growth of plants, fostering a connection with nature.

What Does It Teach?

This activity imparts the basics of gardening, plant rearing, and provides a relaxing experience that promotes patience and connection with nature (2).

Indoor Activities

A hot afternoon or a rainy day can get everyone holed up in the house. Don’t let that stop you from indulging in some crazy activities with your child.

1. Family Tree

Among all the lovely activities for 8-year-olds at home, this one takes the cake for helping you bond with your child.

How to Do:

Give your child a pencil and a large paper to draw a tree. Then use your family albums to go through the photos, identifying your family members and placing them in appropriate positions on the tree.

What Does It Teach?

Your child may have a difficult time putting together people and their relationships with the family. This activity helps him understand and appreciate his family better.

Family Tree

2. Magazine Art

Get out all those old magazines and let your child turn them into a work of art.

How to Do:

Give your child a theme around which he needs to create something interesting. Let him peruse each magazine, cut out any parts he wants, and create something wonderful.

What Does It Teach?

Your child will begin to understand how to wade through a lot of unnecessary stuff to find that which matters most.

Magazine Art

3. Cooking Time

Unleash your child’s inner Masterchef with one of the popular Montessori activities for 8-year-olds.

How to Do:

Let your child choose an episode from the show. Ask him to note down the ingredients and the steps. Then, work together in making the dish for everyone in the family.

What Does It Teach?

Not only does it increase his interest in cooking, but your child will be happy, cooking his very own meal.

Cooking Time

4. Playing Cards

UNO might be your child’s favourite, but does he know of the other classic card games as well?

How to Do:

Get the usual deck of cards and teach your child a variety of games such as Rummy, Don’t hold the joker, and so on. Start with simple ones at the very beginning.

What Does It Teach?

Your child will learn all about strategic thinking, arithmetics and shape recognition through a simple card game.

Playing Cards

5. Cleaning Race

What better time to get your children to help with household chores than this?

How to Do:

For each child, assign the same activity, and time them to see who finishes it up first. Keep all activities simple, such as making the bed, arranging the books or toys, and so on.

What Does It Teach?

It helps children understand the effort that goes into keeping the room clean and instils a sense of discipline.

Cleaning Race

6. Pictionary

Discover the joy of language and creativity with the classic game of Pictionary, backed by research indicating its positive impact on vocabulary, communication skills, and active thinking.

How to Do:

Create teams A and B, each with a minimum of two participants. Instruct Team A to assign a word or phrase to a member of Team B. The assigned member must draw images representing the word or phrase, while their team guesses within the set time. Utilize paper, a whiteboard, or online Pictionary kits for drawing and guessing.

What Does It Teach?

This activity enhances vocabulary, communication, and active thinking skills through artistic expression and teamwork.

7. Puzzles

Embark on a journey of cognitive development with puzzles, proven to enhance motor skills, vocabulary, and problem-solving abilities. 

How to Do:

Introduce different types of puzzles like cryptic, trivia, and word puzzles to your child. Motivate your child to engage in puzzle-solving sessions with friends and family. Through puzzle-solving, enhance motor skills, vocabulary, and problem-solving abilities.

What Does It Teach?

This activity promotes motor skills, vocabulary enhancement, and collaborative problem-solving.

8. Tape Shape

Explore a unique blend of physical and cognitive development with the Tape Shape activity. 

How to Do:

Use easily removable tape to create various shapes on the floor. Write instructions on chart paper, associating tasks with each shape. Your child reads instructions, performs tasks, and moves between shapes within a set time.

What Does It Teach?

This indoor activity enhances active thinking skills and physical development through shape-based instructions.

9. Treasure Hunt

Ignite strategic thinking skills through the thrilling indoor adventure of Treasure Hunt. 

How to Do:

Write riddles on chits, each leading to a hidden goodie in various parts of the house. Hide chits and goodies at different locations. Provide the first riddle, and let your child solve it to discover the location of the first goodie. The game proceeds as each found chit unveils the next riddle, creating a thrilling scavenger hunt.

What Does It Teach?

This activity enhances strategic thinking skills and cognitive development through a challenging scavenger hunt.

10. Chess

Embark on a journey of intellectual growth with the timeless game of Chess.

How to Do:

Explain the basics of Chess, including the roles of each piece on the board. Engage in practice games to familiarize your child with the rules and strategies. Encourage your child to play Chess with friends and family to enhance cognitive skills.

What Does It Teach?

This activity boosts concentration, memory, and cognitive abilities through strategic gameplay.

11. Bell Game

Enhance body balance and concentration with the dynamic Bell Game, designed to pass a bell among participants without ringing it.

How to Do:

Arrange participants in a circle with legs folded. Select a participant to start; place the bell in front of them. Instruct participants to stand, pick up the bell, and pass it silently to the next person. The process continues until each participant has a turn or until someone fails to pass the bell without ringing it.

What Does It Teach?

This activity promotes body balance, boosts concentration, and introduces a fun challenge for participants.

Outdoor Activities

You don’t need to take a picnic or go to the mall to have fun every time you step outside. Any of the following activities will make your child’s day.

1. Washing the Car

Who knew washing a car could be perceived as a fun activity instead of a chore? Your child may love behaving like a grown-up, and this would be the perfect opportunity to help him do so. All it takes is a bucket, a sponge, soapy water and a cloth.

How to Do:

Get those soapy solutions and buckets ready. Make sure your child is wearing clothes that are comfortable even when he gets wet, and let him have a gala time cleaning your car.

What Does It Teach?

It makes the entire concept of car cleaning a fun-filled activity. Your child can also use his imagination to write or draw anything he wishes on the car with the soap suds, of course before wiping it squeaky clean!

Washing the Car

2. Reverse Hide and Seek

Put a spin on the classic game of Hide and Seek and watch as this turns out to be your child’s favourite game!

How to Do:

This starts with one child hiding, while everybody else looks for him. Whenever someone finds him, he has to hide with him as well. It ends with one child looking for everyone hiding in a constricted space together.

What Does It Teach?

Team effort and compromising with others is learnt effectively with this activity.

Reverse Hide and Seek

3. Balloon Toss

A large open area and a nice big balloon are all it takes to keep your children happy.

How to Do:

Blow up a balloon and take your kids to an open garden. Ask them to keep the balloon up in the air as long as they can, by passing it to each other with a simple tap of the hand.

What Does It Teach?

Your kids learn to be competitive and cooperative at the same time with this game.

Balloon Toss

4. Bulls-eye Toss

Among numerous fine motor activities for 8-year-olds, this is the easiest to pull off.

How to Do:

Draw a dart-board on the ground and let your kids stand at a distance. Ask them to toss a wet sponge onto the board as close as possible to the bulls-eye. Give points accordingly.

What Does It Teach?

It helps children make a better judgement about weight, distance, and energy to land the target.

Bullseye Toss

5. Map Making

Turn your children into brave explorers with this group activity.

How to Do:

Task each group of kids to investigate an area of the neighbourhood and draw as accurate a map as possible. These can then be compared with maps on the Internet and scored accordingly.

What Does It Teach?

This simple game helps improve the sense of direction in kids and makes them adept at reading maps.

Map Making

6. Ball Pass in Pool

Dive into aquatic fun with the Ball Pass in Pool game, where children swim with a plastic ball, enhancing strength, toning muscles, and fostering balance and coordination. 

How to Do:

Choose a suitable swimming pool for the game. Use a plastic ball for ease of handling in the water. Participants swim while passing the ball to each other without letting it drift away. Turn it into a family activity for added enjoyment.

What Does It Teach?

This pool game develops strength, tones muscles, and promotes balance and coordination through a fun and engaging water activity.

7. Outdoor Gardening

Nurture a love for nature with Outdoor Gardening, an interactive outdoor activity designed for nature-loving children. 

How to Do:

Choose a suitable outdoor space for gardening activities. Familiarize your child with gardening tools, soil types, seeds, fertilizers, and manures. Guide your child in planting and caring for various plants. Emphasize the enjoyment of gardening as a recreational and educational outdoor activity.

What Does It Teach?

Outdoor gardening introduces children to nature and basic STEM concepts, fostering patience and compassion through hands-on plant care.

FAQs

1. Why Activities Are Important for an 8-Year-Old?

Activities are crucial for an 8-year-old’s development as they promote physical health, cognitive skills, creativity, and social interactions. Engaging in various activities helps in the overall growth and well-being of the child.

2. How Much Activity Should Your Eight-Year-Old Do?

Children aged 6-17 should aim for at least 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity daily. This can include a mix of aerobic exercises, muscle-strengthening, and bone-strengthening activities suitable for their age and abilities.

3. What Is the Recommended Daily Screen Time Limit for 8-year-olds?

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends limiting screen time to around 1 to 2 hours per day for children aged 6 to 12. This includes time spent on TVs, computers, and other electronic devices.

4. How Can Parents Make Sure the Activities They Select for Their 8-year-olds Are Suitable for Their Age?

Parents should consider the child’s developmental stage, interests, and abilities when choosing activities. It’s essential to ensure the activities align with age-appropriate content, safety measures, and provide a balance between physical, cognitive, and creative engagement.

5. How Can Parents Engage Their 8-Year-Olds in the Process of Organizing Activities?

Involve your child in decision-making by letting them choose activities based on their interests. Collaborate on planning and organizing the activities, encouraging responsibility and independence. This fosters a sense of ownership and enthusiasm for the chosen activities.

Putting together summer activities for 8-year-olds as well as at any other time of the year can be quite a task. By knowing what children love and integrating them with any activity, you can soon come up with a massive list of interesting ones all by yourself.

References/Resources:

1. Middle Childhood (6-8 years of age); Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/childdevelopment/positiveparenting/middle.html

2. Probing Question: Does talking to plants help them grow?; Penn State; https://www.psu.edu/news/research/story/probing-question-does-talking-plants-help-them-grow/

3. Hamer. W, Lely. L; Using pictionary game to increase learners’ vocabulary mastery in English language instruction; Journal of English Education Studies; https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/4618/a7bc00c0f653d3c7883dc73f96c210a8d99a.pdf

4. Five Things Children Gain from Puzzle Play; Illinois Early Learning Project; https://illinoisearlylearning.org/blogs/growing/puzzle-play/

5. Physical Education and Activity: Yoga Activity Card; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; https://www.cdc.gov/healthyschools/bam/cards/yoga.html

6. How much physical activity do children need?; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/children/index.htm

7. What are idioms?; Cambridge University Press; https://assets.cambridge.org/97805217/44294/excerpt/9780521744294_excerpt.pdf

Also Read: 

Gift Ideas for 8-Year-Old Girl
8 Year Old Child Birthday Pary Ideas
Developmental Milestones for Eight-Year-Old

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