How to Keep Kids Busy During Holidays

Holiday season is something we all look forward to as it offers a break from routine. But if you have kids at home, you know that after the first few days, boredom begins to set in. So, it is always a good idea to plan ahead for holidays. I usually draw up a plan every few days and let my kids in on it so that they are a part of it and feel excited. I also make sure the kids get to spend time both indoors and outdoors.

Keep it Indoors

Prep for School – This may not be the most popular one on the list but it is important for kids to stay in touch with their school work during their holidays. To make it less school work and more fun, you can use activities and worksheets for kids. There are also holiday-themed activities and worksheets that you can use.

Wear the Chef’s Hat – Kids will love to prepare food, especially if they are related to the holidays. Don’t eggnog, latke or a black-eyed pea dish sound interesting? Some of the dishes are easy to make and kids can get into the spirit of holiday season by helping you out in the kitchen.

Pie Crust
pie crust” by Stephanie Sicore is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Game Day – Kids can have a fun time playing their favorite games, whether on their mobiles, tablets or computers. You can even invite their friends over for a day of fun as they compete with each other playing their favorite games.

Movie Night – Gather together some old favorites and have a movie marathon. It could be your kids favorite animated movie or Christmas classics. It is easy to put together and a great way for the family to spend some relaxing time together.

Film Kijken
Film kijken” by ianus is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Get Crafty – Teach kids to make holiday crafts that can be given as gifts like paper snowflakes or a dreidel. They can also try their hand at painting and sketching. You can check out sites like Pinterest for some easy and interesting DIY ideas for kids.

Take it Outdoors

Play Time – Kids can have some good old-fashioned fun in the backyard. I usually set up an obstacle course for them to race around or we organize a sack race or a treasure hunt. Last year, we even took a craft project out into the garden when we made a little fairy house in a corner. You can also build a kite and fly it later.

Nature Trail – Organize a short trek in a picturesque locale so that kids can spend a day outdoors close to nature. You can also pack for a picnic. My kids love getting outdoors and they also love working in the garden, though they detest raking the leaves. One holiday, we planted a few herbs in pots and another time they were pretty gung-ho about planting flowery plants.

Picnic on the Hills
Picnic on the Hill” by Steve Jurvetson is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Holiday Fun – Take your kids out for a holiday as traveling can expand their mind and open them up to different cultures and experiences. A road trip can again be an opportunity to play car games; these can also include educational games.

Family.jpg
family” by Kiran Foster is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Around Town – You can also check out if there are any activities that are being organized in your local library, community center or local council. These places usually hold workshops and activities for young kids, and it will be a great way for kids to meet new people as well.

These are just a few of the tried and tested ways in which we spend our holidays. This way the kids are in good spirits and we also get to spend some much needed family time!

Christmas Traditions Arounds the World

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Easy Animal Crafts for Kids

Recently, my kids and I had a fun weekend as we set out to make animals with paper plates, beads and more. It is amazing how creative we could get with few supplies and they were super easy to make. Though my kids are older, these are crafts that even preschoolers can make with a little help. Animals are a surefire hit with kids, and you can use these ideas to create some cool animal crafts.

Valentine Penguins
My kids had watched Penguins of Madagascar so penguins were on the top of their list. We rolled up our sleeves and got to work. I realized a few hearts can take you a long way, at least where penguins are involved.

Supplies: Construction Paper (Black, Orange and White), Googly Eyes, Scissors, Glue Stick

Directions: Cut out the black construction paper in the shape of an egg, that is it should be a little broader at the base. Cut out a heart with white construction paper. Fold it into half and unfold it so that you can see the line running down the middle of the heart. Run the glue stick along the sides of the heart and place it in the middle of the black cutout. Cut the orange paper to make three little hearts. Place one heart around two inches down the white heart on the middle line to make a beak. The other two need to go at the bottom of the heart on either side of the line; these will be the feet. The googly eyes can be stuck on either of the middle line just over the heart-shaped beak.

Penguin Parents
Penguin Parents” by Christopher Michel is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Tiger, Tiger
Tigers are beautiful creatures and if your kids are anything like mine they will be in awe of them. You can make a tamer version of the wild beast with just a paper plate. Sounds easy, doesn’t it?

Supplies: Paper Plate, Orange Construction Paper, Black Marker, Googly Eyes, Scissors, Glue Stick, Pencil

Directions: Using the paper plate, draw a circle on the construction paper. Cut it out and glue it on the back of the paper plate. Cut out two ears. Draw a few stripes on half the ear and a few stripes on top of the plate, right in the middle. On either side of the stripes you have drawn, glue the ears. Place the googly eyes, and with a marker draw the nose and mouth. Don’t forget the whiskers!

Massive Tiger
Massive Tiger” by Todd Ryburn is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Butterfly Fairy Wreath
My little girl loves butterflies and fairies, and we decided to create a magical accessory for her –
a butterfly fairy wreath which she loved. We used lots of bright colors for the butterflies.

Supplies: White Paper, Crayons, Scissors, Glue Stick, Pencil

Directions: Draw the outline of a butterfly. Make a couple more and cut them all out. Your child can help you color them. Cut out a one-inch strip of thick paper that is long enough to go around your child’s head. This can be colored too. Glue the butterflies around the strip and stick the edges together to make a band.

Peacock Butterfly
Peacock Butterfly” by Trev Grant is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Hand Me a Giraffe
Next up was the giraffe. This was fun for the kids as it allowed them to get a little messy as they painted their hand and made prints on the paper. But the results were worth the time I had to spend getting the paint off their hands.

Supplies: White Paper, Pencil, Marker, Googly Eyes, Glue Stick, Scissors, Orange and Yellow Paint

Directions: Apply yellow paint on your child’s palm and inside arm. Stop a few inches before you reach the elbow. Help them press it on white paper. The palm will be the giraffe’s face and the hand, its long neck. The outer fingers are the ears. Over the two middle fingers, make a smudge with the black marker. Glue the googly eyes on the palm and draw a nose and mouth. Dip your fingers in orange paint and press them to make little patches.

Giraffe.jpg
Giraffe” by sharmzpad is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Share your favorite DIY crafts for preschoolers!
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brionnasimpson

Author:brionnasimpson
I am an assistant teacher and my aim is to curate unique learning tips and techniques customized towards kids.

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