20 awesome things to do (at home) with your little Londoners in May 2020 and beyond

  1. Tate has transformed some of its best displays from all four of its galleries into online exhibitions. Walk-through highlights include Modern Art and St Ives, Tate Liverpool’s Constellations display, and Artist Rooms: Ed Ruscha from Tate Modern.
  2. There’s plenty to keep everyone busy on the Barbican website, from an under-5s Family Film Club watch list to a virtual Wizard of Oz family workshop, plus a Basquiat-inspired hip-hop playlist and lots to read, watch and listen to for all ages.
  3. Head to V&A’s website for online games and at-home activity ideas, including a chance to design your own wig, weekly #LetsMakeWednesdays tasks and an opportunity to virtually explore the museum’s vast collection of fascinating objects.
  4. Discover has been busy updating its Instagram with activities kids can enjoy at home, from junk-modelling makes including paper dinosaurs and egg-box caterpillars to drawing challenges, reading lists, videos and virtual experiences.
  5. Go to Polka Online for activities based around three of its most popular plays: The Paper Dolls, Gorilla and The Everywhere Bear. Expect storytelling videos, virtual workshops and activity packs featuring word games, recipes, crafts and more.
  6. Head to Little Angel’s website to watch Boo!, a shadow-puppet play made by puppeteer Joni-Rae Carrack during lockdown. Afterwards you can download instructions to create your own performance, with more activities added each day.
  7. Little Angel has also extended its broadcast of Jon Klassen’s I Want My Hat Back until the 7th of June, and you can watch performances of his other two ‘hat’ books, This is Not My Hat and We Found a Hat, on the 3rd and 24th of May, respectively.
  8. Museum of London has plenty to explore on its website, including a virtual tour of its The Clash: London Calling exhibition, plus bonus content via the Smartify app, and an exciting walk-through of the museum’s future West Smithfield site.
  9. Wobble and Kick Toddler Football Club has set up an ‘Online Footie Team‘ that 1-5 year olds can join for free. When you join you’ll get a 20-minute ‘Core Session’ including key activities, plus 10 five-minute ‘Mini Sessions’ that hone specific skills.
  10. Somerset House-based children’s theatre company Tall Stories is broadcasting a series of beautiful productions online. Head to its website any time to watch The Gruffalo, Room on the Broom, The Snail and the Whale and lots more.
  11. Royal Museums Greenwich’s site is where it’s at during lockdown, with activities including weekly Virtual Toddler Time and Explorer Stories family workshops, plus crafty how-tos including making your own finger puppet and personal art gallery.
  12. Missing your museum fix? Head to the BBC Four website to watch Museums in Quarantine, a series exploring national museum collections at this time of enforced closure. Choose from Andy Warhol at Tate Modern, the British Museum and more.
  13. Babble is offering a packed schedule of online talks during May, including Music and the Brain with musician Malcolm Galloway on the 6th and Scent: Perfumery from Antiquity to the 21st Century with fragrance expert Nick Gilbert on the 27th.
  14. Notting Hill-based Cosmourse is live-streaming daily children’s art classes, with dedicated sessions for 3-6s. Classes are structured to allow creative expression whilst building a knowledge of various mediums, techniques and art movements.
  15. There’s lots happening on the Southbank Centre site right now, from read- and draw-alongs to dinosaur fun, a playlist inspired by Hayward Gallery’s Among the Trees and loads of how-tos for kids, including beatboxing and mini-forest making.
  16. Pitzhanger is also coming up with the virtual goods, with online resources including a Pitzhanger colouring book, a junk-modelling task and downloadable make-your-own Pitzhanger Manor activity, as well as a paper flower corsage tutorial.
  17. Family rave pioneers Big Fish Little Fish are live-streaming free virtual kitchen raves every Sunday from 2-4pm via Facebook Live/YouTube/Twitch. Expect live DJs, themed dress-up, birthday shoutouts and lots of dancing, of course.
  18. Head to All4 to stream the first episode of Grayson Perry’s Art Club, which focuses on portraits. Join in and create your own portrait of a member of your family or housemate you’re isolating with, and keep checking back for new episodes.
  19. Every week Royal Opera House is adding new activities to its site to get families singing, dancing and making, with plenty of chances to craft, choreograph and compose. Check out week 3’s Party and Play theme from the 1st.
  20. Head to House of Illustration’s site to download free Quentin Blake-designed rainbow e-cards to send to loved ones. You can also check out their list of books to make self-isolation pass in the blink of an eye, featuring reads for all ages.

Babu explores the Annie MG Schmidt exhibition at the Kinderboekenmuseum, Den Haag.