Keeping the children amused through school holidays can fill many parents with dread, especially when things cost so much. Family Lives have come up with some top tips on keeping your children amused through the holidays.
- Find out about local days out - there is a lot out there for you. Check the websites of your local council and tourist information centres, local papers and community centres for what is happening in your area.
- Make a list of your favourite childhood games - old favourites such as hopscotch, putting on a show or marbles won't cost the earth and your children will enjoy you reminiscing!
- In the evenings get the kids to design a game that you can make the next day - give them ideas to keep it simple such as a paper boat race in the paddling pool or homemade skittles using a tennis ball and empty toilet rolls.
- Sunny days are great for simple activities like picnics and ball games. This can be done as close to home as in the back garden!
- Visit your local library and look for adverts of events. Many libraries hold events such as story time, and arts and crafts days.
- For more inspiration look at books on art, cookery and crafts in your local library - it is amazing what you can do with a toilet roll and some sticky back plastic!
- Check to see whether your local council swimming pool offers free entrance in the school holidays.
- Art galleries have kids' days - this could be just the thing to stimulate your child's artistic streak.
- Don't try and fill every minute of every day. Encourage your children's imagination and independence - let them play in their rooms or the garden.
- Arrange a movie day - choose a couple of favourite films, get some popcorn and put your feet up with the kids - housework can wait!
- Get cooking with your kids, from recipe to shopping to cooking to eating!
- Organise a treasure hunt around your home and garden with clues and treats for the children to find
- Hold your own mini Olympics with games that require little equipment ... sack race with pillowcases, tug of war with a dressing gown belt! Let your imagination take over
- Have a arts and craft day and get some canvas and paints, they can be bought in bargain shops for as little as a pound and use paints or crayons and the kids can hang up their creations in their rooms.
- If outside is dry, wrap up and go to the park or a nice walk somewhere quiet with the children with a flask of hot chocolate - sure to go down a treat!
- If you have a tent, you could arrange a camping trip in your garden with the children for one night!
- Dig out the puzzles, games and books and give them a go, some good old-fashioned entertainment can be fun!
- Have you ever thought about Origami? All you need is paper and instructions which can be found online, will keeps kids amused and they will learn a new skill
- Kites are great if it is a windy day and they can be bought from bargain shops very cheaply
- Make a cake together – they’ll enjoy being allowed to stir the ingredients, but expect some mess!
- Build a den with the kids, depending on the weather; this could be inside or outside! All you need is boxes, blankets, etc.
- The kids could put on a play, they could use dressing up clothes, it can be filmed if you have a camera and they can write their own story! Would make for great memories
- Check out your local library or learning centre, where there will be books and computers for your child to use, plus they often have story time for toddlers and parents.
- Create a scrapbook together using photos from your family album. Give it a theme - it could be about anything they want, like school or the holidays.
- Have a look inside your cupboards and play dress up with your old clothes. Sort through your clothes together and recycle the ones that you never wear and the stuff your little one’s grown out of.
- Try museums, libraries and galleries. They usually have new exhibitions and events running during the summer.
- Spend time at home doing what your children enjoy like playing a computer game with them, or go online and look up your family tree together.
- Be creative – make things together like greeting cards or use beads to make some jewellery.
- Take them to your local leisure centre – there are plenty of indoor sports and activities they can participate in.
If you would like to share your tips on surviving school holidays, we would love to hear them and may add them to our list, please email us at email@example.com.
We are here to support you and if you are finding things difficult during the school holidays, please do get in touch with one of our Family Support Workers on either Live Chat, Email or through our helpline on 0808 800 2222.
Please watch the video below for further tips on keeping the kids amused through the holidays.