As parents we get it. It can get challenging trying to come up with new ideas and ways to keep the kids entertained over the Christmas period and school holidays. It can be especially hard to do this without breaking the bank or even worse your sanity.

That’s why we’ve compiled a list of our top five ideas for keeping the family entertained during this holiday period. Check it out below…

1. Hold a movie day

This one’s always a winner and is guaranteed to give you back a few hours in your day. Let each child pick their own movie, get some popcorn popping, and let them bring all the comforts into the lounge room like their pillows, comforters and teddies. By letting each child choose their own movie, you mitigate the disagreements over what to watch so everyone gets a turn. Tip – invite friends or neighbours to join the fun!

2. Nature discovery walk

Get outside and explore your local surroundings. Talk to your children about what they think they are going to find while on their walk. If they look closely what kind of birds might they see? What coloured flowers might they smell? What bird whistles can they hear? This is a great idea for when the cabin-fever starts to set in and you need to get out of the house for some fresh air and exercise. Check out your local Council’s website for nearby parks, and wildlife reserves. TIP – Nature has a calming effect on everyone!

3. Dinosaur dig!

With that temperature soaring, we are all looking for ways to keep cool this Summer. Using old ice cream container, fill it with water, and then add some small plastic dinosaurs, eggs, leaves or coins. Then, simply pop it in the freezer to freeze overnight. The next day you’ll have a fun ice-age block that will keep the kids entertained as they dig the ice to reach the toys. You don’t have to just use dinosaurs for this one, you can be as creative as you like. Think, food colouring, glitter, leaves and flowers from the garden etc. This activity will require your children to think beyond the box as they work together to come up with ways to get to the treasure! Added bonus, it gets them outside in the fresh air and is great for their sensory development. TIP – to spice things up, use lollies or prizes to keep the game going.

4. Teddy bear picnic

Plan a teddy bear picnic as a family. Not only does this make for a fun day out as a family but it’s also a great learning opportunity for the children. Choose your picnic spot (you can even use the backyard) and plan the picnic with the children. Ask them to help you build a checklist on things you will need for the picnic. This can be anything from picnic blankets, to sunscreen, to cutlery. This is also a great chance to discuss healthy food choices and let the children help to prepare the food for the picnic. Not only is this a fun activity to do together, it also supports language & literacy development, and creates an opportunity to talk about healthy food and nutrition. TIP – get everyone involved in the planning and food preparation. 

5. Obstacle course

Using items in the backyard or around the house, you can set up an obstacle course that will keep the children busy f

or hours. Thinking back to the days of Gladiator or more recently, Australian Ninja Warrior, use your imagination to put together a series of obstacles that the children need to jump over, roll around, climb, hop or skip through. To make it more fun add in some silly parts throughout such as quack like a duck while running around the chair, pop bubbles, do a silly dance, sing a nursery rhyme, hula hoop and so forth. The children can help you plan the course and add in their own zest. To make things more interesting you could add in time trials, or challenges for them to beat. TIP – turn the sprinkler on for some slip and slide fun!

So what are you waiting for? Pop on some sunscreen and get outside and have some fun in the sun this Summer!