Trying to get through your to-do lists with children off school can be difficult. During the school holidays, you’ll need to find ways to keep them occupied so you also have time for the things you need to do. Claire Fleet is a digitally savvy mum of two primary school children who has worked in IT at CHP for 8 years. Here she shares four fun ways to keep the kids occupied this half term.
1) At-home crafts
If you need to get some work or chores done, a quick internet search can pull up hundreds of ways to occupy your children and challenge their learning. While TV programmes and electronic devices are great for a quick distraction, settling the kids down with some colouring or crafting can draw their attention and help them get creative.
There’s no need to buy anything new, either. You can simply use what you have around the house. For example, an everyday staple from your kitchen cupboards, such as dried pasta or seeds, can lead to plenty of fun. Kids can create pictures with some PVA glue and a piece of paper, or they can make and decorate sound shakers using empty food packaging or old containers.
2) Head outdoors
If the weather is good, head outside. Too much blue light (the kind that comes from our device screens) can be bad for us. Plus, we all need the vitamin D that comes from being in the sunshine. Being out in the fresh air will lift your child’s mood and will help tire them out. Try a bingo walk. Draw a six square grid on a sheet of paper, add common sightings like a cat, post box, or a yellow car in the squares and see how many your kids can spot.
3) See if they can help you in any way
Children can start taking on small household tasks as early as two years old. Many studies have shown it can help them reach their next developmental milestone. You could encourage your kids to muck in with putting away their pyjamas or tidying up the pile of shoes near the door, for example. Just make sure the chore is age appropriate. You could make the tasks seem more fun by setting a challenge between siblings to see who can complete it the quickest.
4) Make an ‘I’m bored’ box
We’ve all heard those words at one point during any school break. So you’re ready when it happens, for younger children you can fill a box with things they can play with independently. Colouring books or puzzles are cheap to buy and great for this. When you need to keep them busy, give them the ready-made box. After a few sessions it may become part of their regular play routine. If the children are at reading age, brainstorm some ideas with them about what they could do on days when they’ll feel bored. Write down their suggestions and put them in a box for safe keeping. The next time they come to you saying they don’t know how to fill their time, their own ideas will be ready and waiting in their ‘I’m bored’ box.
If you’ve ever tried to call someone whilst keeping an eye on your child, then you’ll know it can be difficult to give either person your full attention. Nowadays, though, you can easily get important admin done via the internet. By using handy services like our new online customer area, you can complete important tasks at a time that suits you. Your home and tenancy information is at your fingertips, and you can update and progress enquiries whenever is best for you. Sign up today, so you can spend more time with your family this half-term doing the things you love.