10 Fun and Free Activities to do with your kids in the Summer Holidays
Summer is finally here! We all want to make the most of our time off with our kids, but the holidays and day trips start to add up pretty quickly…
We don’t need to drain our bank accounts to make special memories with our children, and we often forget that our little ones are fascinated with the simplest activities and just want to spend quality time with us.
Here at the Good Play Guide, we have come up with 10 fun and free activities to do with your kids in the summer holidays!
1. Scavenger Hunt
Scavenger hunts are a brilliant, free and easy way to keep kids occupied and entertained. They can be done outdoors or indoors, and are a good way of getting children to really observe their surroundings (whether you’re near a park, or exploring the city). It can be tailored to any area.
For example, a woodland hunt could challenge children to find a rabbit hole, a feather, a fallen tree, some moss, etc… A city hunt could ask children to find a red car, a bus stop, etc. It can be played alone, or with (or against!) friends or siblings.
Woodland Trust has a wide variety of free scavenger hunt sheets to download and print for free!
2. Gather things you don’t need and have a garage sale or car boot sale.
One child’s trash is another’s treasure. Gather old things you don’t need or want and have an outdoor garage or car boot sale! This is a great way to declutter, whilst also teaching your child to be mindful of the value of money and things.
3. Create an outdoor obstacle course
Get creative by building and completing an outdoor, or indoor, obstacle course!
There are many low-prep ways to create a quick, yet challenging, obstacle course that will keep your kids entertained for hours. You don’t need to buy specific toys for this, just use things you already have laying around your garden. Tape can be used to make a floor ladder, and frisbees can be used as stepping stones!
4. Try Geocaching
Geocaching combines nature and treasure-hunting, and is a fun and engaging way to get your kids out and about this Summer!
It uses GPS to help you locate hidden objects, so you and your kids will have to use your navigation skills to find them in real life, and log them digitally.
There are many free apps for Geocaching, so get your walking shoes on and start your adventure!
5. Visit your local library and take part in Summer Reading Challenge
The Summer Reading Challenge is held every year, and its aim is to encourage children to enjoy the pleasures of reading. This year’s theme is Gadgeteers!
“Science is all around you! What do you love doing? Are you a brilliant baker? Or a mega music fan? Are you the tech wizard amongst your friends? Join the Gadgeteers for the Summer Reading Challenge to discover the amazing science and innovation behind the world around you, including some of your favourite things!”
To participate, all you need to do is find the closest library to you that is running this challenge.
Remember, joining the library, borrowing books and taking part in the challenge are completely free!
6. Board Games
Family board games are great fun and some can even be played over many days. Have a go at creating your own board game this Summer, whether it’s as simple as Snakes and Ladders, or as elaborate as Monopoly. This project will help encourage your child’s imagination and problem-solving skills, and playing their game with them at the end means spending more quality time together.
7. Visit your Local Museum or Gallery
Most small towns have a local museum, and as residents of the town, we often don’t think of visiting them.
A trip to your local museum or gallery can be very exciting for little learners and can spark curiosity about new concepts. Bring along a picnic and learn more about the history and culture of your hometown.
8. DIY Food Crafts
We know how much our kids love crafts and getting messy with them, it keeps them entertained for hours! We also know that they get through paint and glue pretty quickly, and it’s not always ideal to keep buying replacements every time a holiday comes around.
There are many craft projects that can be done with items you already have laying around the house. For example, making homemade playdough, tie-dying with food colouring or even creating origami using old newspaper.
9. Build a time capsule
Do you remember building and burying a time capsule in the back of your garden when you were younger? It’s so much fun to collect items with a special meaning and reminisce about the memories they hold. You can even write a special letter together for your future selves.
10. Check what’s on locally
Visit your local council website or social media, and see what free events and activities are on near you!
Joining local parenting Facebook groups is also a useful way to keep up-to-date with what’s on.