6 long weeks of fun, relaxation and family time... or in reality juggling work, childcare and managing the costs of keeping everyone entertained (and yourself sane) until September. It can be a challenge to come up with activities to keep the kids busy every day. The good news is that with some effective planning and organisation, you can have less stress and more fun during the holidays. In this blog, we'll explore the benefits of using a school holiday planner as your secret weapon for a great break.
In this blog
The A Life More Organised School Holiday Planner started life 15 years ago in a excel spreadsheet.
I used a calendar to plan out holiday clubs and visits to grandparents to cover childcare whilst I was working. We also worked our family holiday around the week that the holiday clubs were shut.
I printed out a copy of the planner for each child so they could see what they were doing and use it as a countdown to the things they were looking forward to.
Having a single location where all of our activities, events, and outings could be seen made it super easy to check if we were free when the kids were invited to play dates. Whilst planner made sure that we had childcare cover on the days we needed it, we didn't let it get in the way of spontaneity and always made changes if we fancied pyjama days or getting up early to go to the beach if the weather was good.
Involve the kids when you plan the holidays
Why not make planning the school holidays a fun and collaborative experience with your kids? Get together and make a list of all the activities they'd like to do and places they'd love to visit - remember to plan in rest days too - overtired kids don't make for relaxed parents!
Involving the kids as you fill in your school holiday planner helps them feel involved in how they'll be spending their 6 weeks off and it's a great opportunity to teach them about decision-making if they have to choose between activities. Let them decorate the planner with their own creative touches, like stickers or drawings, to make it extra special.
Some great free or cheap ideas for summer holiday activities
Money is tight at the moment and the 6 weeks of keeping the kids entertained can really put a strain of family finances. Here are a few ideas that may help the pennies go a bit further of the holidays - remember to include some of these as you fill out the school holiday planner with the kids.
Camping in the garden / make an inside den
Help a friend out (swap kids for a day)
Treasure Hunt or I Spy in your neighbourhood
Picnics in the woods
Walking / Hiking adventure
National Trust tours
Make Your Own Pizza Night
Visit to the park (try to find new ones to go to)
Pet pals workshop at Pets At Home
School shoe fitting expedition!
Remember kids are unlikely to remember every single activity that they do over the summer holidays - they'll remember having the opportunity to spend more time having fun with you. Make it as easy as possible for yourself by planning a few of these activities - just being at home relaxing is an activity in itself as they don't have an opportunity to do this in term time.
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I’m Sue, a professional home organiser and KonMari Consultant based in Hampshire, UK.
I trained with Marie Kondo and the KonMari team and help busy people declutter, organise and simplify their homes so they can get on with the important job of enjoying life.
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m: 07740 782575 www.alifemoreorganised.co.uk