The count down is on, and school is finished for some and nearly for others. Kids are excited, no more school. Teachers will be relieved I’m sure and looking for a well deserved break. Parent’s are also looking forward to the down time but also calculating the eight weeks holidays over the Christmas period. Eight weeks! What to do with all that time. No more lunchboxes, no more alarm clocks, schedules, and mad dashes to get to school before the bell. No more forgotten bits n pieces, money in envelopes for this and that.
Whilst asking my daughter her thoughts on the long school holidays ahead, the first words that popped out of her mouth were ‘don’t let your kids become a couch potato!’. Quickly followed with her sage advice of ‘limit their electronic time to an hour or two a day’(okay so I am on track for that), ‘make sure they read books instead’ (yes, Dad’s already been to the library twice) and ‘help with the washing, unpack the dishwasher or else at the end of the holidays they will become lazy and not want to do anything.’ (hmmm they were grizzling about that earlier this week!) Overall wise words for a twelve year old I thought.
One of the best pieces of advice I always go back to on the school holidays is to make a few lists. The first one being, Outside Activities. Put it on your fridge and start making a list, everyone can add to it. Write down everything you can think of that is an outside activity. Have a look around at what you have. Hoola hoops, chalk, cricket sets, balls, scooters, bikes, netball hoops, bubbles etc. Now do the same for Inside Activities. Open the cupboards, look under beds and write down everything that could be an inside activity from puzzles, to books, craft, comics, marble runs, cards, board games, drawing, writing, table tennis, lego etc. Lastly write a list of Would Like to Do Activities, everyone can add – you won’t get them all done by the end of the holidays but make your way through a fair few ie. go to the waterpark, museum, have a picnic in the yard, art gallery, rockpool, play tennis, visit Grandma, eat ice-cream, cook cupcakes etc. (These do not have to cost money) Every day you all need to exercise, so make sure this is a must do part of your day too.
Make sure the lists are visible to everyone and when it hot or rainy everyone can look down the Inside list, when it’s time to get outdoors pick something from the Outside list. Every second day try to cross one off the Would Like to Do list. Before you know it the holidays will fly by and you will have done far more than watch tv, scroll through social media and tidy the house endlessly. Best of all, you will have created some moments to look back on and remember.