Depending on the age and stage of your children, here are some ideas for a fun morning or afternoon activity these Christmas holidays.
All children love to help you cook – if you have the patience, bread making can be a satisfying event because the kneading is not only good for time spent together but it’s also great for building strength in your child’s fingers and hands. Give your child the chance to be creative as they knot the bread or decorate it with cheese, salami, tomatoes and more. Even small children can participate in bread making.
Decorate some cookies – buy some plain cookies or biscuits from the store and decorate them into faces. Talk with your child about how a sad face would look, a happy face, a pink face, a blue face … get them thinking creatively!
Play hair dressers – time to get out the dolls, the shampoo, the blow dryer, the magazines, the clips and the hair ties. Ensure the scissors stay hidden!
Use the hallway as a bowling alley - soft toys or plastic tumblers can become targets. A soft ball your bowling ball – and away you go.
Have a puppet show – time to match all the sock in the house. Anything that has no pair becomes a ‘sock puppet’. Glue fabric, wool, string, or cardboard – anything that will fix to the sock as a decoration. Have your puppets talk to each other. Read a story and let the puppets act it out.
If it’s summer where you live, a bucket of water and a paint brush. Child love to paint pictures on the path or the fence. This is a ‘low mess’ play option.
More outdoor time can be fun with outdoor chalk [pavement chalk] – play tic-tac-toe, draw a scene on the path, or draw roads for the bikes.
If it’s cold where you live, wrap up warmly and go for a walk, collecting items along the way for a collage picture or sand garden made at home. When you go for a walk with your child, look for things to talk about – the colour of a leaf, the way an insect walks, the sound of a bird or the speed of a vehicle. This time together can be more than a physical exercise.
Pick up items that could be used for a craft activity – a collage, an indoor garden, leaf rubbings, or a print. To make a collage, bring out the glue and make a picture on card. To create an indoor garden, place play dough on a plate or plastic lid and stand the leaves and twigs upright. Place a sheet of paper over the leaves and lightly draw over each leaf to create a picture. To make a print, glue the items on card, paint over, then place paper over and press down. When you remove the paper, you’ll find you’ve made a print.