Can you hear it now? Over and over like a broken record – “I’m bored, I’m bored, I’m bored … I’m BORED!”
Must be the school holidays!
Some parents dread school holidays like the plague.
You will wonder how your child could possibly be ‘bored’ when surrounded by gaming consoles, television, apps, toys (indoor and outdoor) and maybe some siblings to argue with.
Are they trying to engage with something else or are they trying to engage you?
I say, if you can’t beat em’ join them! Get your chores quickly and be prepared to let the house go a little and embrace school holidays. Get out your diary and pen in a few outside plans to keep your kids busy, and most of all, tuckered out!
Of course, going out all the time isn’t always feasible or affordable! So here are some activities you can do at home based around what your children already like doing.
Does your child love reading? Use that to your advantage these holidays. Have them make finger puppets of the characters in their favourite story and after they’re done role play it with them! Too easy and all you need is paper, markers, sticky-tape and scissors!
Got a writer in your midst? Keep them occupied by providing them with some fun story starters like “I’ll never forget the time I met a friendly monster” and have them finish the story. Give them a chance to read their story out loud to family and friends. They are sure to love it!
So all the technology has been exhausted with usage around you? Dig out the classics – board games! Or better yet, make your own! They will have so much fun creating something that has their own flavour to it!
Go out into the garden, get bird watching or feeding, make a worm farm, plant some vegetables or even just pull out those weeds. The choices are endless.
Play Masterchef. I’ve done this with kids before and they LOVE it! Put together a few healthy ingredients and play The Invention Test, or how about offering a little Masterclass by baking some bread. Your children will be amazed watching the magic that is bread rising!
The sports child
If your backyard’s not big enough or you can’t get to the park, try some indoor sports that involve crawling, rolling or a soft ball. Replace the ball with a balloon if you’re worried about things getting out of hand! My favourite game involves kids having to crawl and bat the balloon into the goals (either end of the room). A top tip is to tell kids that ‘silent cheering’ and ‘good sportsmanship’ earns them extra points. Works every time!
Make some instruments with nothing but household items. A canister filled with rice makes a great shaker and upside down pots with a wooden spoon make great drums!
Use the world around you (your house!) to play some maths games. A treasure hunt game can immediately turn into an activity about ‘location’ as your child learns the difference between left and right, forwards and backwards, above and below. Or explore shapes by having your child find and draw all the different shapes around the house. An extra tip would be to allow them to take photos of the shapes, print them out and label them.
I hope you can make use of these activities and embrace school holidays. Just remember the opportunity to find engaging activities where children is learning is ENDLESS and they will be having so much fun they won’t even realise they are learning.