The end of the school year is a busy and exciting time for younger children. They have been busy at school and will be excited at finally reaching the summer school holidays, bursting to keep up the level of activity and excitement. At a time when you most likely have lots to do for upcoming celebrations, it can be a challenge to keep the kids occupied and happy.
Here we share out top five tips on how to keep the kids busy in the lead up to Christmas, so that you can get on with your preparations:
1. Enlist the children’s help
Have your children help you with the smaller tasks such as card writing, gift wrapping, making gift idea lists for family members of a similar age, making decorations (paper chains, lanterns, bunting etc.), or decorating the tree. While these may seem like small tasks, the children will be enthusiastic to help and contribute. Ensure they are set up with everything they need to for activities.
2. Run a cooking class
Teach the children how to make biscuits. They will love helping to weigh and mix the ingredients, not to mention cutting festive season shaped cookies from the dough. This is a particularly good activity as there are several different steps that will prevent the kids from getting bored. Once the cookies are baked, the fun really begins. Have your children help with creating lots of coloured icings and piping decorations on the cookies. These can then be bagged and given as gifts, or saved for treats on celebration days.
3. Encourage community mindedness
It is important that children learn about service to others, particular at this time of year when some members of our community find it most difficult. Encourage your child to pick a gift for someone less fortunate than themselves and donate it to one of the many giving appeals. Another activity could be to visit a home and offer some small gift to the aged and lonely (it could even be the biscuits the children have made!).
4. Make gifts
Grandparents generally have almost everything they need. Opt for hand-made gifts – they’ll appreciate the effort and if made by the grandchildren, they’ll also treasure them for years to come. Rather than just offering up a box of art supplies and telling the kids to make some gifts, make the project a challenge. For example, ask your children to create a gift that can hold things, is blue and green and uses paddle-pop sticks, or a gift that must contain a hand-drawn picture, and a story of 30 words using tinsel as a theme – you get the idea!
5. View the Christmas lights
Go for a walk at night to view your neighbourhood’s home lighting displays. Use the outing as a learning opportunity, by playing games with the children – for example, have the kids count the number of Santa figures or reindeer they see, or see who can spot an orange decoration first. This not only gets your children out and about, it is a great way to meet your community members, build community relationships and share in the festive spirit.
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