I don’t have school age children…yet. But I know what the weekends are like trying to keep one child amused so I can only image what it would be like to do this for 16 days in a row! (Pretty sure I’ll be stocking up on the wine when my turn comes for school holidays).
So I’ve scoured the internet and found all the very best (of other peoples) ideas for keeping kids amused during the school holidays.
Some cool websites
The Kiwi Families website has great ideas broken down into categories like Animal Lover Activites, Craft Activities and Gardening Activities (to name a few). If, like me, you live in the mighty Waikato, where they’ve just issued a severe weather warning, you’ll likely be very keen on their Rainy Day Activities section
And this blog, thought a few years old, still has some really cool ideas to do if you’re stuck inside with the kids
If you want to find out all about local playgrounds you can usually go to your local city council website which will have information about every single playground in the city. Even little old Hamilton for example has over 80 playgrounds (of which I’ve been to about 3), and Auckland has over 4000, so there will definitely be some that your kids haven’t been to yet.
If you don’t mind paying a bit of money there are plenty of events coming up like school holiday programmes, zoo events and Disney on Ice. Plus as always there are some good kids movies released to coincide with the school holidays (even I want to see the new Minions movie).
Just looking at all these things I can see how school holidays could become very expensive, very quickly. So here are some ideas to keep the kids amused for free (or at least just using what you already have at home):
– Local libraries often have activities as do local malls
– Play dates with friends
– Playgrounds as mentioned above
– Have a ‘movie day’ and get the kids to help make popcorn and other snacks for the movie, set up the room just like a movie theatre, close the curtains and make it as much like the real thing as possible.
– Nail painting
– Baking / cooking
– Local museums can often be free and often have holiday activities
– If the kids are old enough set them the challenge of cooking lunch or dinner. Get them to plan the menu, figure out what they need to buy for it, go grocery shopping to buy the ingredients and cook the meal. (okay this isn’t technically free but you’d be spending money on dinner stuff anyway).
– If you can convince the kids to do it, holidays would be a good time for a spring clean of their rooms. They could even sell on trademe old toys / clothes they don’t want or donate them to charities.
– Craft activities (there are any number of craft type activites – have a look at the links above, many of which use what you’d already have at home)
– Local bush walks or scenic activities (weather dependent).
As I am yet to experience the joys of school holiday time, if there are any seasoned school holiday veterans out there I’d really really love to hear your school holiday survival tips! I’ve got exactly 2 1/2 years to put together my school holiday survival strategy! (Comment below or let me know on facebook)