Half term is looming, and if your kids are anything like mine, you’ll need to plan ahead about how you’ll keep them busy. I like to try and mix the entertainment up so that I don’t spend too much cash and minimise the risk that the kids will get bored.
I’ve split the list of activities up into things to do at home and things to do out of the house, that way you can skip past things if you’re not prepared to travel. One year we were without a car for about a month while we were searching for another used car to buy, and I quickly realised dragging them across town on several busses wasn’t worth the bother. They got tired and crabby quickly and didn’t enjoy the activities I’d planned as much as I’d hoped!
These are my top 10 ideas to entertain the kids this half term
Whether you’re looking for something free, cheap, or don’t mind spending a little, this extensive list will have something for you!
Activities out the house
Out the house activities are perfect for when you’re sick of the same four walls and don’t mind a little bit of travel for a lot of fun.
1. Visit the woods
A trip to the our nearest woods can be a great afternoon out. Wrap up warm and wear your wellies while you explore in nature and splash in muddy puddles. The fresh air is great for de-stressing, and its likely help wear the kids out! Running around in the woods and going on a nature hunt is a great way to keep busy while you all get some exercise.
2. Walk along the beach
Although a visit to the beach conjures up visions of sunshine and ice creams, it can be nice to visit in the autumn too. It’ll definitely be nippy, so wrap up warm and bring your bucket and spade. Unlike the summer, the beach won’t be crowded and there will be plenty of space to build the biggest and best sandcastle you can imagine.
3. An autumnal picnic
Some autumn days can be pretty mild, so it might be nice to have a walk and a picnic. Instead of summer foods like chocolate and finger sandwiches, why not pack winter warmers like soup and hot sausage rolls? You could even bring a hot flask of tea!
4. A trip to the cinema
If the weather’s not playing ball but you want to get out of the house, a cinema trip is a fun way to fill an afternoon. There will usually be a handful of new releases ready for the half term influx of kids. This means there should be plenty of films to choose from!
5. An indoor play area
It might be busy during half term, but if you’re desperate to get out when the weather isn’t great, at least the kids can run off some steam. They might even see other children they know from school, meaning there’s less likely to be a sibling fall-out if they’re playing with their own friends for a few hours.
6. An outdoor adventure area
There are a few of these large outdoor adventure areas dotted around the country. You might have to drive a little way to find one, but autumn half term is usually the last time they’re open for the season. They range from assault-course type adventure areas to supersized parks and can offer some high climbs and energetic runs for your little adrenaline junkies!
Activities inside the house
To break up the week, you might fancy a few days at home. These are my favourite ways to fill those kinds of days.
7. Baking day!
Kids loves cookies and cakes, so when you give them the opportunity to make their own, they usually go mad for it! Baking with children (especially the super young ones) is usually a messy job, so don’t start this task lightly – a lot of cleaning up will be needed!
8. Games afternoon
Board games and table top games are a fab way to bond with the family. They’re fun to play and teach important life lessons (like how to be a gracious loser). Raid your cupboards and dedicate an afternoon to playing a variety of games.
9. Invite a friend
Having a friend over is right up there when it comes to excitement. If you’ve got more than one child, it might be a good idea to invite a friend for each (if you can handle the noise levels). Suddenly tired old toys have a new lease of life when a school friend enters the picture.
10. Arts and crafts
An afternoon of craft – although messy- provides lots of entertainment for our child. If you vary activities such as painting, cutting and sticking, drawing, and whatever mixed media you dare let them attempt, they’ll be busy for hours and feel good about themselves when they show off their end results.
You might also like to read about my goodness night in.
*A collaborative post