Another half term is upon us, and it can be an expensive time but, is doesn’t have to be.  Here are some ideas on how to have fun and save the pennies…

Outdoor adventure

Get the children wrapped up, pack a bag with water and snacks, and head out into the world.  This could be an adventure to a park you haven’t yet visited, or a trip to the woods.  Make it exciting, give the children a matchbox or similar and ask them to collect mini objects from their travels, or collect leaves for a collage another day. Or have you tried Geocaching yet? You can download an app and find hidden containers that are all over the World, make sure you take a pen to write you familiy’s name on the log inside the container.  The app gives you a map to follow and it is a great way to incentivise children.

Boredom Jar

Get the children to write fun activities on paper, decorate them and fold them up.  Put them in a jar, and whenever ‘I’m bored” is uttered they can be directed straight to it.  Be imaginative and creative, put specific games and challenges for the whole family to enjoy.

Google it!

Google free days out for families, there are so many great local groups and tools to find out what’s on in your area.  This takes a bit of research, so make a cup of tea, and sit and have a google and and a plan for when the holiday kicks in.

Treasure hunt

Creating a treasure hunt can be great fun and the more difficult you make it, the longer it takes them!  Leave clues hidden clues indoors and/or outdoors.  Each clue should lead them to the next hidden clue, sometimes pictures work best for younger children and more cryptic written ones for the olden kids.  This is also great to practice reading in a fun way.  The treasure doesn’t need to be anything amazing, maybe just a snack wrapped in silver foil.

Make a den

Make a tidy space in the living room or bedroom and use clothes’ horses, chairs and blankets to make a fun den.  Make it cosy and invite the favourite cuddly toys.  You could even have a snack, a story, or even a nap in it!

Movie night

A fun movie experience doesn’t have to happen at the cinema.  Agree on a favourite movie, set a time, get in cosy clothes, shut the curtains and make it as dark as possible. Make your own popcorn for added authenticity, and get some small snacks to eat in front of the TV.

Shop til’ you drop

Making use of local charity shops is a great way to keep the children entertained and excited. Give them a few pounds each, or whatever your budget is (don’t forget yourself too!) and head out in search of a new toy, gift, or a book. Make sure you emphasise the budget as part of the activity to save on pester power, then come home to play with your new treasures!

Library

A trip to library is a great way to spend an afternoon, especially if there is an activity on for children.  All pick some books, taking time to browse and enjoy the quiet atmosphere, and come home for some reading on the sofa!

Play dates

For the cost of an extra child’s lunch, play dates are a great way to keep the kids entertained if you are organised in advance.  Make sure there is a trip outside if it’s a longer stay, otherwise too many children bouncing off the walls will not be fun.  Make sure there is a tidy play area to begin with, and then just let them get on with it!

Happy half term everyone!

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