3 Fun + educational activities to keep kids entertained during half-term
When your children are at home for the week, there are often some slower days – or rainy days – when you’d like to have a fun activity to hand, ready to keep the kids entertained. I’ve previously shared some rainy day holiday activities on my blog and here are some ideas for more educational yet fun days at home:
Okay, I know they’re not at school, but there’s no reason why their half-term activities can’t be educational as well as fun, is there? I personally LOVED going to places like Jodrell Bank to learn more about space (and that was as I was an adult!) so days out to science museums is definitely something I want to put on this list of activities.
That said, you don’t have to go to a museum for your kids to learn something new – they can do it through the power of play if you choose the right educational games. I shared a few ideas for lockdown lessons in a blog post last year so that’s a great starting point if you want to keep things educational AND interesting this half term.
One of the toys that I most often mention is Geomag, because there’s a collection for every age group – just choose the right age for your youngsters and keep them supervised! It makes learning about forces really interesting. The Geomag Mechanics range is particularly engaging because it combines playtime with a spot of science through gravity.
Is there anything more fun for kids than building a gravity-run and then racing balls down it? Plus, most Geomag kits now use recycled plastic so it’s a more sustainable option than plastic building kits. I’ve played with Geomag many times and have found it to be really fascinating to just fiddle with the magnets and see what happens.
The best way to get kids interested in creativity is to allow them to participate in a painting, sewing or crafting session. This could be through your local library (our’s here has weekly crafting clubs) or you could set up a creative activity at home. Just put down a wipe-clean tablecloth and let them create!
If you need some prompts to get started, try Create with Andy G, a low-cost interactive book that contains arty tasks along with plenty of sketchbook space for children to experiment inside the book. It’s like a sketchbook but with ideas to get them started AND a video tutorial to show them exactly how to do it.
A craft kit is another great way to start kids on their creative journey, as it contains all the materials they need to complete a project from start to finish. This saves you having to pull out all kinds of paint, pens and paper etc, and you won’t need to spend anything extra on supplies.
For example, a handmade banner making kit from Kikkerland has fabric, ink, tracing paper, templates and even a brush – so all you need is a clean space to work and the kids can craft an inspirational banner for their bedroom.
An activity that would be interesting for children AND teens – especially those who are doing their GCSEs – would be to visit an art gallery or museum during half term. They are often free of charge and you don’t need to travel far to find one – I bet there’s a local museum close to your home so do a quick Google search to find one near to you.
Although it encourages little ones to be louder than you might like, it’s so much nicer to hear them being noisy for good reason if they’re playing with musical instruments or singing along with songs. It’s another way for kids to express themselves creatively so dig out some instruments (or just use upturned pans as drums!) and let them create a musical masterpiece.
If you want to incorporate a game, try a sound guessing game like Soundiculous Kids. Children can take it in turns to create the sound on their card for other family members to guess. It’s not just musical sounds – there are all kinds of animal, mechanical or human sounds that’ll help them to develop their understanding of sound.
And once you’ve got a pack of the cards, you can create your own expansion pack for free with a card template from Gamely Games. That’s another way for kids to be creative and stretch their imaginations during half term.
Let me know if you have any other ideas for school holiday activities that can help to keep children entertained while maybe teaching them something new too? I’d love to hear your half term ideas in the comments below. Thanks!
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Some items in this blog post have been gifted to me and the pink links indicate a gifted product, affiliate link or information source. All thoughts and opinions in this post are based on my own experience and I am not responsible for your experience