Inside Family Activities at Home
Education,  Fun,  Motherhood and Parenting

Family Activities at Home: Boredom Busters, Educational Projects, and Fun for All Ages

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Are you unexpectedly stuck indoors with all the kids? Here are some fun, practical, and educational activities the whole family can enjoy at home!

Fun Educational Family Activities you can do indoors at home with kids

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Sometimes our best-laid plans go awry. Weather, sickness, or other challenging circumstances can isolate us in our homes. But in the midst of the unexpected, our children still need to learn, to eat, to get the wiggles out, and to keep boredom away…without resorting to unlimited screentime!

I’m a mom of five from ages 4 to 14, and I know how challenging it can be to remain cooped up in tight quarters with many different ages and personalities. The extroverts (ME!!!) get stir-crazy and bored while the introverts (my husband) get irritated by always being around the extroverts. Ahem.

Not to mention the fact that we actually want our kids to continue to get a good education even in the midst of not-so-normal circumstances. Is it possible to educate multiple children at home (across several grade levels) without losing your mind?

And what if you need to work from home while keeping the kids occupied and engaged (and relatively quiet) in the meantime?

I reached out to my online community, women who are there in the trenches with you. We have experience as work-from-home moms, stay-at-home moms, homeschool moms, and beyond!

These are the ladies you wish you could call up in the witching hours when the toddler is flailing and the tween is emoting and you’re just not sure what to do next.

In this incredible round-up of resources, you’ll find links to everything from math-at-home tips to family games to indoor exercise ideas for kids.

If you’re already a homeschool family who is suddenly finding your outside commitments cancelled, you’ll find plenty to keep the education and the fun rolling at home.

If you’re a traditionally-schooling family who is unexpectedly finding yourself at home with all the kids? It’s going to be ok. We’ve got your back. Your only problem will be deciding which fun activities not to do! (That, and making sure you don’t run out of toilet paper.)

{Please do note that the opinions contributed below do not all necessarily reflect the opinions of Humility and Doxology.}

Fun Educational Family Activities you can do indoors at home with kids

Scroll through all the fabulous ideas below, or click straight to the topic that most interests you:

Emergency Homeschool Plan in Time of Crisis

I love what Ambleside Online says about this FREE Emergency Learning Plan: ” We know that there are more important things than missed schooling during a crisis. But sometimes in the midst of disasters, creating a small oasis of normalcy and continuity is very important. In the midst of such a disaster, grown ups with many urgent details on their minds cannot focus on thinking up things for children to do, and it is our prayer that this free resource will fill a need.”

Focus on the things that are most important: family relationships, faith, peace, and reading good books. You don’t have to Do It All during a time of crisis. (For that matter, we can’t Do It All at any time, but that’s another discussion.)

My friend Amanda says the real three Rs of education are “1. Relationship 2. Routine 3. Resources.” I love her perspective!

Do you have a preschooler at home? There are some simple ways to encourage learning and relationship organically through the day.

I had the chance to chat with Sarah Powers, one of the co-hosts of The Mom Hour podcast, all about what it looks like with multiple children and ages who are home at once. You can listen below, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Are Your Kids Home from School? This Note is for You. (Mary Hanna Wilson): “One day you are going to look back and talk about 2020 when the schools closed and the NBA suspended games and we talked about hand washing more than normal. And they are going to remember these random weeks at home with you. So here is your permission and my encouragement to do something memorable with your time.”

Don’t forget to set reasonable expectations, and to treat others the way you’d want to be treated. My friend Dawn wrote an encouraging (and incredibly practical) post about this!

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There are lots of other educational options available online now for parents who weren’t planning on homeschooling

Free Online Education Resources (Captivating Compass): Free online education resources now available. Share with your friends that are exploring options for learning at home.

A Month of Free Morning Time Plans (Pam Barnhill): We’ve chosen the artwork, poems, books, music and more. You don’t have to be an expert to have a great plan.

How to Start Homeschooling in 5 Steps (Purposeful Motherhood): Whether your interest in homeschooling is a result of precautionary measures, school closures, simple curiosity, or family-driven, rest assured that the process to get started is much simpler than you may think.

Homeschooling with Toddlers? 11 Hacks to Stop the Frenzy! ( The Unexpected Homeschooler): Life was fairly easy when the older ones went to school and you just had the toddler. What do you do when EVERYONE is at home and you find yourself the teacher? Here’s 11 hacks to help homeschool with toddlers.

Make a plan and create a routine

You can get to the end of the day and wonder where all the time went, or you can have a plan in place. You can run around like a headless chicken, or you can create a routine.

It doesn’t have to be written in stone; the best routines are flexible. But coming up with some ideas ahead of time can help keep boredom (and overwhelm) at bay. Otherwise it’s too easy to say “oh, fine, just watch another show” when the kids start whining. Ask me how I know. 😉

Here are some free printable planning pages that may help. The loop schedule, especially, is one of my favorite hacks! (You may also like this post I wrote about how to meet the needs of multiple children without losing your mind.)

How to Promote Creativity: Tools and Resources (Julie Naturally): Things parents can do at home–through projects and play–to encourage this essential but diminishing skill. And of course, creative=fun!

Really Hard Day Plans from Kara Anderson: Grab this free set of printables to help you when you need a plan, but just feel too tired, overwhelmed or anxious to get on track.

Gentle, Gospel-Centered Parenting Strategies from my friend, Lynna

Where to find books when you can’t get to the library

Our family usually goes by the library several times a week, so what happens when we can’t get new books at the library? Here are a few helpful tips:

Check your local library system’s website to see what online services they offer

Many libraries now offer digital services for free! You can check-out e-books, periodicals, and audiobooks and download them to an app on your device or computer. Overdrive is the popular option our local library uses; check to see what digital downloads are available for free to you!

Set up a trial digital membership

With an Audible membership you have access to thousands of hours of books for your children to listen to and enjoy. My children listen from our Kindle and Echo Dots for hours while they play. I love options like the Ramona Collection and the Henry Huggins Collection because with only 1 credit you get access to an entire series!

A Kindle Unlimited membership gives you access to hundreds of titles. You can try the first month free, so it’s a great option if you’re home-bound temporarily.

Try free audiobooks at Librivox

Volunteers record audiobooks that are within the public domain at Librivox. Some of the narrators are not that great, but you can find a few gems. (On the Humility and Doxology Facebook page, a follower recently recommended checking out Kara Shallenberg, Phil Chenevert, and Lyn Stanley.) And the price is certainly right!

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More Literary Activities for Families at Home (with suggestions for preschool to high school!)

Fun Read Aloud Activities to Make Memories (Julie Naturally): Why read aloud time is important and activity ideas keep them listening

How to Host a Simple Tea with Poetry (Organized Homeschooler): Enjoy extra famiy time by including a special tea with poetry time. There are no special materials required! All you need is a snack and some poetry (available online or digitally from your local library).

12 Poems Everyone Should Know By Heart (Humility and Doxology): printable poems sure to delight all ages!

My First Reading Journal (Humility and Doxology): Writing practice can be as simple as learning to keep a basic reading journal. Free printable download!

Free Language Arts activities and printables to do at home while school is cancelled (WriteShop)

7 Quick and Easy Sight Word Activities (Organized Homeschooler): Turn practicing sight words into a game! These hands on activities use items that you probably already have in your home, like rice and muffin tins.

Spring Famous Authors Inspired Photo Scavenger Hunt (Compass Classroom): A spring photo scavenger hunt is the perfect way to bring some creativity and literary purpose to your next nature walk. Get your download!

Educational (and Wonderful) Books To Read (Our Journey Westward): One quick trip to the library can keep your family engrossed for hours and hours. These booklists of tried and true titles can be read by your children or used as family read-alouds. Time will fly when you dive into wonderful books on a single subject or dig into various topics. (Books are beautiful ways to get in sneaky learning, too!)

Writing Prompts for Middle Schoolers (Where’d My Sanity Go): A great way to get kids to practice their writing skills while they are at home.

Alphabet Craft Printables (That Bald Chick): A to Z alphabet craft printables

Alphabet Handwriting Printables (That Bald Chick): A to Z handwriting practice printables

Uppercase and Lowercase Do a Dot Printables (That Bald Chick)

Teach your kids how to edit a paper (Adventures in Mommydom): Don’t let your kids writing skills rust as you’re stuck at home. Work with them on editing their school papers with these great tips!

Simple Book Review Form (Walking by the Way): Super easy learning! Read a book and complete the review. Challenge your kids to complete five or ten forms.

The Draw My Picture Game (Homeschool with Love): Children can practice giving and following verbal instructions in a FUN way with the Draw My Picture Game. It’s easy-to-prepare (all you need are paper and pencil) and enjoyable to play.

Picture Writing Prompts Weekly Series (Homeschool with Love): Make writing fun for kids with the Picture Writing Prompts Weekly Series. Each post has a unique picture and four different writing ideas to go with the image. That’s more than 150 writing prompts you can use.

Stuck indoors try fun educational activities for kids

Activities and Games to Get Kids Writing (Curiosity Encouraged): One of the best ways to teach and encourage writing, Play, takes away the pressure and fear writing can offer.

Create a Body Biography (Curiosity Encouraged): A Body Biography is a life-sized representation of a fictional or nonfictional character. Use it as a post-reading activity, group project, or create one just for fun.

How To Keep Your Kids Reading When the Library Is Closed (Walking by the Way):

Simple Book Making (BJ’s Homeschool): Make simple books using just construction paper, markers or crayons and your kids’s own story ideas.

Clay Activities for Handwriting (BJ’s Homeschool): Clay activities for older kids which help build hand strength for handwriting

Keep Math Skills Fresh with Family Activities at Home

Keep Math Skills Sharp with FUN Activities (Our Journey Westward): Math isn’t usually a favorite subject, but it’s important to keep skills sharp. Set aside the frustrations of math practice with these incredibly fun, hands-on ideas that include things like play dough, paper airplane, and M&Ms!

Math is Fun printable (That Bald Chick): Printable for creating your own math problems. Laminate it for even more math fun!

Teach Long Division with Monopoly Money (Kate’s Homeschool Math Help): Frustrated teaching long division? Monopoly money to the rescue! You’ll learn how to teach your child both HOW to do long division and WHY it works.

3 Fun (and Free!) Printable Multiplication Facts Games (Kate’s Homeschool Math Help): Multiplication facts practice doesn’t have to mean just flash cards and worksheets. Your kids will love playing these free printable multiplication facts games. All of them are classic children’s games –but with a multiplication fact twist. 

Self-Paced Online High School Math (Humility and Doxology): My daughter loves her online Geometry class!! (Watch her enthusiastic YouTube video here)

Tesselations – A Curated Lesson Plan of Free Resources (Jump Into Genius)

Free Printable Math Games ( Orison Orchards): You can sneak some learning in by playing math games!

Math Puzzles (Orison Orchards): Math puzzles are a great way to sneak some extra learning in while having fun! Recognizing the different forms of numbers will help build your child’s number sense.

DIY Math Manipulatives (Orison Orchards): If you don’t have a set of math manipulatives at home and don’t want to spend a couple hundred bucks getting one, these printables will do the job for FREE! They’re a great way to add interest to math lessons, to make abstract concepts more concrete, and to build number sense in your child.

Boredom Busters Blog Post

How to include science and nature study when you can’t go outside

Inclement weather, physical handicaps, and sickness can all make exploring outside difficult if not impossible. But you can still find ways to include science – and even nature study – family activities while you’re cooped up at home.

No Sweat Nature Study

My friend Cindy West offers live nature study classes via webinar. Geared primarily for 1st-8th grade, they’re enjoyable for all ages. Membership also gives you access to all her library of previously recorded nature study classes!

You can give it a try with this Free Online No Sweat Nature Study Class (Our Journey Westward): This 40-minute lesson will teach your children about the methods of seed dispersal in a hands-on way from the comfort of your living room. Grab some paper and colored pencils and click play! There’s an optional experiment to complete at the end of the lesson, too.

Our Journey Westward

Science activities for the whole family

My First Science Experiment (Humility and Doxology): a simple “does it sink or float” experiment even your young children can enjoy!

Amazing Solar System Activity with Free Cootie Catcher (+ Planet Fact Cards) {Rock Your Homeschool}: Enjoy hands-on, interactive science fun with your kids using this free printable Solar System cootie catcher + planet cards. Awesome activity for brain breaks & more!

May the Force Be with You: Hands-on Activities to Explore Forces (Kristin Moon Science): Learn what a force is, what forces are at work on us, and get ideas for many FUN hands-on activities your kids can do at home to experiment with forces.

Exploring Genetics by Creating a Family Pedigree (Kristin Moon Science): Learn how to create a pedigree tracking the genetic traits your family possesses

Dissection Alternatives for High School Biology (Kristin Moon Science): If high schoolers are missing out on dissections, there are many quality alternatives to dissection that can be done at home.

Unit Study about the Moon (This Bit of Life): Have fun learning about the moon! Read books about the moon, make a STEM moon lander activity, and learn the phases of the moon with a free printable pack!

Constellation Study with free Flashcard Printable (This Bit of Life): Study the constellations in your home, read some wonderful books, work on handicrafts, and use this free constellation cards printable!

Get Outside for Fresh Air and Science (Our Journey Westward): Getting outside for fresh air is great for our health and to reduce cabin fever. Use these 10 free NaturExplorers lessons to help you keep your children outdoors longer. Knowing that learning is taking place while having fun is a great bonus!

Science Experiments (Forgetful Mama): After years of living in a small community without a store we have learned to be very creative in most of our science experiments and to plan ahead for others.

Learn the Bones of the Body through a fun song (Humility and Doxology):

Bones of the Human Body Song!

Want to teach your children the major bones of the human body? Set them to music, of course! 🙂 Time for us to get a little goofy here… Put this on your wall so you don't forget it! 😉 https://humilityanddoxology.com/bones-human-body-song/

Posted by Humility And Doxology on Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Simple Science Resources (Kid Minds): A wide variety of fun science activities to do at home with your kids.

Nature Walks (Houseful Of Nicholes): Need to get a breath of fresh air without connecting with others? Take a nature “walk” in your back yard today!

Teaching Children about Weather (The Koala Mom): Learn about the weather this spring with these fun activities for observing and recording the weather at home.

Learn History and Geography with Family Activities at Home

A Surprising History Hack (Hess Un-Academy): Turn a fun and popular video game (Age of Empires) into a full-on history learning resource. Learn how (it’s easy!) and while you’re at it, download the free worksheets to make learning with this fun game even easier.

How to Make a Rice Krispies Map (Organized Homeschooler): Making a map out of Rice Krispies is fantastic way to get kids interested in geography. They get a hands-on lesson while also making a fun treat. The map possibilities are endless. Learn about your home state, a favorite country, map a fictional location from a favorite book, or even tie this in with a history unit study.

Underground Railroad Unit Study (This Bit of Life): Learn about the Underground Railroad and earn a Junior Ranger badge- complete with book suggestions and field trip ideas!

Textbook-Free History (Humility and Doxology): History is an adventure story and is best learned biographically and chronologically through good books.

Homeschool High School: Free Curriculum Plan for US Government and Economics Courses (Humility and Doxology): Can you teach high school level US Government and Economics courses at home? Can you teach them #TextbookFree? In this post I share our planned course of study, book list, and resource compilation for these two high school electives (US Government and Economics)…my gift to you!

Dump out your LEGOs and learn history (Adventures in Mommydom): Make your history lessons fun and get your kids interacting with their history as you create your own LEGO history lessons.

How to make a play dough brain model (Adventures in Mommydom): Grab your playdough and create this science lesson with your kids to review the parts of the brain!

Music, Arts, and Crafts: Creative Family Activities at Home

If you’re stuck at home, you need a creative outlet. What could be better than digging out the craft supplies and doing projects as a family?

Chalk Pastel Video Lessons: just add chalk pastels, regular paper, and a wet paper towel

If you don’t already have chalk pastels, they’re a very inexpensive supply to get. There are lots of free sample video tutorials available at ChalkPastel.com. For instance, do you have a Baby Yoda fan? I bet they’d love this tutorial!

Art for All Ages Bundle

Mixed Media Art

Masterpiece Society also offers video art courses in a variety of mediums for all ages. The whole family can enjoy these activities at home!

Virtually Tour a Museum

Did you know that many famous museums have their collections available online? You can tour the Sistine Chapel, peruse the Art Institute of Chicago, and access all sorts of things at the Smithsonian…all without leaving your living room!

Virtual Museum Tours For Doing School At Home (Captivating Compass): 14 Top Virtual Museum Tours to Use in Your Homeschool

More Art Activities for Families at Home:

Art Links for the Not-so Artsy Homeschool Parent (Table Life Blog): These are my favorite online art ideas for parents who don’t feel up to “teaching art.” Many are completely free and require only a few art supplies to complete.

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Free Art Appreciation printables (Enrichment Studies): Add some beautiful art to your home and see how easy art appreciation can be!

Let’s Make a Meme! (Enrichment Studies): Have fun making memes using this humorous art and the included accessories.

A Super Simple Kids’ Craft Activity for Bad Weather Days ( As We Walk Along the Road): Stuck inside with the kids? This simple activity won’t take many supplies and can encourage creativity.

Aboriginal Dot Painting (Homeschooling Downunder): Learn some Australian Aboriginal art painting techniques using these simple tools.

Enjoy Music at Home even if the Symphony is inaccessible

I love the instrument guide series from the Philharmonia Orchestra on YouTube!

The music mapping series from SQUILT is a great way to train the ear to listen to music with understanding and appreciation.

15-Minute Music Lesson on Music of Star Wars (Music in Our Homeschool): This 15-minute music lesson will introduce you to the film score composer John Williams, show you a bit about how a movie score writer records the music for a movie, and about the themes that Williams incorporated into the Star Wars movies. A free printable pack is included!

15-Minute Music Lesson on Music of the Olympics (Music in Our Homeschool): Learn about and listen to four musical pieces/songs that you’ll recognize related to the Olympics. Includes a free printable pack!

Clap for Classics! Egg Shaker mini class, Rhythm Stick mini class, bumblebee songs, butterfly songs, etc. (Clap for Classics): 5-10 minute free mini music classes with Clap for Classics! Perfect for kids ages 5 and under. Learn some new songs, dance and move with me.

Clap for Classics! Live Online: Virtual Music Class for kids (ages 5 and under) and their grown-ups. (Clap for Classics): A Live Music Class hosted on Zoom. We will sing, dance, and listen to classical music as we interact together in this engaging music class.

Family Music at Home (My Musik at Home): Family music class for mixed ages

Guilt-Free Screentime

Family movie night (or afternoon. or morning) can be a great way to boost morale and enjoy quality relationship time when you’re stuck indoors. But you probably don’t want to let your kids sit around with eyes glued to the screen all day watching toy unboxing videos. (Seriously. I still don’t understand this phenomenon.)

But sometimes, let’s be honest, you just need a bit of a break and some time for everyone to chill out with some screentime. No matter how much fun you’re having with family activities at home, sometimes you need some quiet, right?

Fun and Educational Family Activities

Here are some quality, no-guilt, educational options and some helpful screentime tips

The Year of Memory Work: poems, speeches, original source documents and more! Each video is enthusiastically recited and also comes with a free printable if you want to memorize the selection on your own.

Learning with TV Shows (Because Screentime Isn’t Always a Bad Idea) (Table Life Blog): Who said educational TV has to be boring? Here are our favorite suggestions for learning science, math, language arts, history, and fine arts through TV time.

Manage Screen Time Without Tears with a Chore Point System (Hess Un-Academy): Instead of telling your kids no to screen time all day long, give them the opportunity to earn as much screen time as they want – on your terms!

Educational YouTube Channels for Homeschooling (Where’d My Sanity Go): Kids can learn at home while watching YouTube. This is a giant list of different educational channels for all subjects that will entertain kids while being educational.

Earn Your Screen Time Printable (Where’d My Sanity Go): Chore ideas that can offer different ways for children to earn screen time.

Boredom Busters at Home

Staying Active Indoors: Family Activities at Home

Easy and Fun Physical Activities for Kids (Hess Un-Academy): Not every item on this list is geared towards indoor fun, but more than half of these 100+ ideas can be tweaked to get kids moving without leaving your home. Check out the giant list of fun physical activities for kids now!

10 Indoor Energy Burning Activities (Forgetful Mama): 10 ways to burn some energy in your home if the weather is too bad for going outside. These are great for brain breaks between lessons, or to just get the wiggles out.

Movement Games with Verses & Bean Bags ( Waldorf-Inspired Learning): Movement games help children warm up their bodies so their minds are ready for learning. Fun & engaging ways to bring more movement into your home.

Indoor Play Activities (BJ’s Homeschool): Large muscle fun/playful activities

What Is the Importance of Physical Education (The Unexpected Homeschooler): Learn the benefits of physical education and get a cheat sheet full of ideas. It includes links to exercises and videos you can do from home.

Parents Need to Move Their Bodies, Too

I enjoy the online workouts from The Balanced Life

Jennifer Hoffman also has some really helpful videos you can watch on YouTube

More Fun Family Activities You can Enjoy At Home

Calendar of Fun Holidays for Kids (Rock Your Homeschool): Discover fun holidays to celebrate with your kids using this free printable calendar. And get fantastic ideas for easily boosting your celebration with activities, crafts, videos, & more.

54 Brain Breaks to Boost Your Homeschool Day (Rock Your Homeschool): Need some cool ways to easily add fun to your day? These free printable creative brain breaks are awesome for helping your kids burn off energy, boredom busters, & more!

Educational Games To Play (Our Journey Westward): This list of 100 games you may already have in your home are wonderfully sneaky ways to keep skills fresh for all ages. Surprisingly, you can cover just about any subject with games!

The 7-day Fun with Kids Challenge (Kind Minds): For seven days, you will do a simple, education, hands-on, short-but-fun activity with your kids.

Create Space for Play (Curiosity Encouraged): Create space and time for free play. When children have “nothing” to do or say they are bored, REJOICE. It means they have time to play, explore, and imagine- all things that make free time wonderful!

How to Do Circle Time at Home (Waldorf-Inspired Learning): Fun ideas for circle time including songs, verses, & bean bags games.

Stuck at Home? Activities for kids from a Stay at Home Mom ( Simple Wife, Happy Life): 25 activities for broken up by age group. Written to encourage moms that usually don’t stay home with their kids.

What to Do When There’s Nothing to Do (Abounding in Hope with Lyme): Activities your children can do when they complain that they’re bored. I created a list of things my kids could do to occupy their time and now I’m offering that to you!

Boredom Busters Blog Post

10 things Children Learn at the Family Dinner Table ( Live life with your Kids): Dinner time is more than just a time for eating. Every time we come together we have an opportunity to teach our kids something.

Creative Things Kids Can Make with Cardboard Boxes (The Koala Mom): Fun ideas for turning cardboard boxes into forts, cars and other things, and encouraging imaginative play.

Make Cards for Any Occasion (The Koala Mom): Get creative with simple materials from around the house to make cards, and then mail your creations to a friend or family member!

How To Make A Lego Movie Producer (Homeschooling Downunder): Would your child like to know how to make their own stop motion movie? Here are the steps.

9 Awesome Educational Podcasts for Kids (Wonder Wherever We Wander): Check out these 9 fabulous podcasts that will educate and entertain your whole family!

What to Do With Kids While Self-Isolating ( My Cup Runs over): Self-isolation with kids doesn’t have to be exhausting or stressful. You also don’t need to spend 24 hours a day worrying about how to entertain them. Here is a growing list of activities your kids can do at home while self-isolating. Join the fun or sit back and watch them flourish. Your choice!

What family activities at home do you plan to incorporate this week?

Let me know in the comments! And please follow Humility and Doxology on Facebook and Instagram where I share encouragement and helpful tips.

boredom busters fun family activities at home
Unexpectedly schooling your kids at home: resource round up


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Amy Sloan and her husband, John, are second-generation homeschoolers by grace alone to 5 children ages 4, 7, 9, 12, and 14. Their educational philosophy is one of humility and doxology, and follows primarily a classical approach. Amy loves coffee, and starts getting nervous if the stack of to-be-read library books beside her bed is less than 2 feet tall. Get her started on Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Homer, or Hamilton the Musical and it might be hard to get her to stop. Mostly, though, she gets really excited about the Gospel. The Sloan family adventures in North Carolina.

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