Whilst we all love to spend time with our kids, school holidays can be overkill, especially having to juggle a full time job and household chores around them constantly being there. Keeping them occupied can help you complete the other tasks in your life and stop your kids running you into the ground. Here are a few methods that may be worth trying:
Keep them active
Active children get tired more easily, which means they’re less likely to be bouncing off the walls. Encourage them to take up a sport which they can practice in their spare time. This could include a football net or table tennis table. Alternatively, it doesn’t have to be a sport, but something fun. A trampoline, water guns or game that can be played in the garden might be enough to keep them occupied. You can even get involved yourself to begin with, but don’t make this a habit or they’ll constantly be pulling you out to join in.
Encourage creative projects
Allow your kids to explore their artistic side by encouraging a time-consuming creative project. You could spur them to create their own arts and crafts project such as make a robot out of cardboard or a DIY princess dress. You could help them to organise a play, or get them to record a movie of their toys with your smartphone. Kids can have short attention spans, but find the right project and you won’t be able to drag them away.
Organize play-dates with friends
The best way to distract kids is to get them to play with other kids. Even if you’ve already got a large litter of children, giving them someone new to play with might make them get bored less easily. You can either host other children, or send your children off to another parent’s house.
Look into day camps and youth trips
If you’re not able to take time off work or find a childminder, day camps and youth trips might be the next best thing. There are all kinds of services aimed at keeping kids entertained in the summer from summer schools to play-zones to youth group mission trips. Find the one most suited to your children – it’s important that they enjoy it and aren’t simply being dumped there against their will.
Take turns with your partner
If you have a partner, why not share the load by both taking it in turn to take days off and provide day trips and entertainment. This will give one of you the time to get on with work (or simply put your feet up and relax). By preparing for having the children you may be able to plan more for activities and days out. Even if you don’t have a partner, there may be another family member who can support you such as a parent or sibling. A close friend may even be able to take them for a day (although you may have to return the favor as a result). Not having your kids around 24/7 will ensure that you look forward to the times that you do get spend with them.