Tired of hearing “I’m bored Mum”?
Well, here are just a few suggestions of fun things to do on school holidays!
1. Have a kids MasterChef competition at home.
Keep meals simple – something such as pizza (just the toppings for little kids) is perfect. This works especially well if the kids have a few friends over. Have a competition as to who makes the best pizza – you can be the judge. Making dough from scratch is fun (and tiring!) but very inexpensive. Plus an added bonus – you don’t have to cook dinner!
Quite a few circus schools have popped up all over Australia. Check out if there is one near you!
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3. Visit a local park.
Ohh yeah – you’ve heard that one before. But not just any park, get out the UBD or on the internet and find a park that you haven’t been to before. Many of the new Council playgrounds are marvelous. There is water play, flying foxes, all sorts of do-be-watchits and thing-a-majigs! A lot of them are fun for parents too!
4. Go to a Make Your Own Slime Class
Slime has been banned at my house after the kids played with it on the couch and I now have a huge green snot-like smear right where you sit. If you hate slime too – then this is for you! There is now a Slime Making ‘Masterclass’ for ages 4 – 14 years.
5. Go Swimming.
Well, this one is for summer – check out your local pool. It’s cheap to get in. All kids love swimming and there is always a nice shady spot for Mum to sit and read whilst Dad watches the kids! Sick of the local pool? Visit one of the really big water parks – some of them have heated pools indoors!
6. Take a train ride.
There are still a couple of old steam trains around the trap. Make a day of it and take the whole family – even grab Nanna! The Mary Valley Rattler in Gympie has just started running again – only two hours drive north of Brisbane.
If your kids are mad about computers, what about enrolling them into a Coding Camp! There are classes for all ages and interests (from building games to just learning the basics)
8. Check out Ninja Warrior School
Ninja Warrior is so popular with kids and families around Australia, so why not join the Ninja Warrior School Holiday Workshop? The Workshop runs over two days (2.5 hours per day) where you child will learn ninja skills!
- Ages: 5 – 15 years
- Location: Wetherill Park, NSW
9. Play puppet show at home.
Puppet shows have always been the cornerstone of imaginative play for children and you can make your own puppet show at home too! So collect all your socks that you´re no longer using and get out the clag and have fun creating.
10. Try Aerial Silks in a School Holiday Workshop
Let your kids learn to climb, swing, drop and perform thrilling acrobatic feats. This is a three-hour workshop that includes a short performance and gives your child the opportunity to try the trapeze and aerial lyra (the hoop).
- Ages: 5 – 14 years
- Location: Various
11. Try Geocaching.
Geocaching is a boredom-buster activity that can take place nearly anywhere. It enables children to continue learning and have fun at the same time. So how about taking your kids for a Geotour? Enjoy finding goodies!
12. Have a picture-taking contest
Photography is an excellent art form that children can enjoy as a hobby throughout their school holiday. So share cameras with them, experiment by taking all sorts of pictures, make it as funny as possible and create your own school holiday catalogue!
There are Surfing Camps for kids is a five day package (that can be split up over the school holidays) and is suitable for all levels and abilities. Or just learn to surf classes. Your child will learn ocean safety and surf etiquette, paddling and catching waves, control, standing up and riding waves.
- Ages: 6+
- Surfing Camp: Location: Dee Why, NSW, Moana SA
- Manly Beach
What´s not exciting about brain teasers? They are entertaining for kids who need an extra brain-charged challenge. It surely does help them build up their creative thinking and logic skills. You can find printable worksheets online like riddles, optical illusions, puzzles and more!
- Ages: Classes available from 2-5 years, 8-15 years and 6-15 years.
- Find Cooking Classes Near You
Horse riding is something all kids should try at one stage or another. There are plenty of places around Australia – and there is even a fantastic two-day overnight horse riding camp available! Rainbow Beach Horse Riding has a few different amazing horse rides in parts of the most beautiful part of the world!
- Ages: 6 – 16 years
- NSW, QLD
Gaming is huge in our family, and this is a great idea for the budding ‘Mark Zuckerberg’ in your family. There are even three or four day Gaming Camps!
- Ages: There are 4 – 14 according to skill level
- Location: ACT, NSW, SA
17. Create a Photo Album Comic Book.
Just download and print your funny pictures and start creating your real-life comic by using thought and speech bubbles!
18. Make a box village.
Don´t throw those used milk and juice cartons and cereal boxes in the rubbish bin! If they are still in good shape, then have fun with kids by building a city out of boxes.
19. Create Story Stones
Sky’s the limit in terms of the characters you illustrate on your stones. You can collect as many stones as you want and use either acrylic paints or the oil-based sharpie. I suggest the Nature of art for kids® brand of acrylic paints, or you can also buy the Liquicryl.
20. Go for a Bike Ride
You can call it “the adventures of town cycling!”, a fun and healthy bonding moment with kids that can take place in anywhere around your neighbourhood.
21. Build an ant nursery farm home
You can create your own by using two jars with lids, one should be thinner and a little shorter than the other. Or if you prefer a flat one, you can purchase a skinny aquarium at a local store. Video Tutorial below.
22. Make your own indoor obstacle course
Choose the activities that match your kid’s skill level, or might as well have them choose the activities. You can be creative in making your own family-friendly obstacle course, like a laser maze. You can set this up in for your kids to climb through, using a red yarn or ribbon.
23. Name that cartoon character!
This game is convenient for parents, especially when you need to stay inside the house. Kids love cartoons. You can download audio recordings of different cartoon characters and start the guessing game!
24. Have some fun home science experiments
Curious kids of all ages are always fascinated with the power of science! Kids can do science experiments at home with whatever you have on hand. Like creating chicken sounds from a cup, the arrow trick and the milk and coke experiment.
25. Plan a farm visit
Old school? Yes, it is not a unique activity but it never goes boring. You can do lots of activities in a farm, ride horses, feed goats, watch the ducks fall in line and take a plunge in a nearby river.
26. Visit an Animal Shelter or Your Local RSPCA.
Kids can join educational-based programs about animals which include hands-on service projects for animal care. Plus who doesn’t love going to give the animals a bit of love! You may even end up with a new member of the family!
27. Take your dog to the beach.
Most dogs love the beach, so as kids. Give them both the opportunity to experience the joy of romping on the sandy beach!
Australia has loads of theme parks now (we even have a list of them!) and there are more and more every day in every state!
29. Visit an Aquarium on a Really Hot Day
When the temperatures over the Christmas Holidays get up around the 40 degree mark – head to the local Aquarium! Not only is it fascinating, it is cool!
There are SeaLife Aquariums in Melbourne, Sydney and Mooloolaba.
30. It’s journal jotting time!
During a family road trip, have your kids note down what they see (weird-looking trees, koala etc.) to keep their brains busy while eating snacks! It would be great to bring along a stack of old magazines for them to cut out and paste pictures that describe what they have seen.
31. Go Ice Skating!
Ice Skating is something not many Aussie kids get the chance to do – but if it is stinking hot – what is better than having fun in a freezer! There are loads of ice rinks around the country!
32. Hold a stacking cups contest
No doubt being the boys’ favourite, but the girls can get into the fun too! Hop onto Youtube to see some amazing cup stacking videos!
33. Visit an Inflatable Water Park
My boys just adore the inflatable water parks – and they are fun for grown-ups too! If you grab your tickets online – you can get a really good deal. Inflateable Water Parks are all over Australia!
Here are a few of the online deals:
34. Have a Family Game of Mini Golf
Mini golf is a terrific whole family activity that is beloved of people of all ages! Google the nearest location to you!
35. Visit a Maze!
There are still some of these beautiful mazes made out of shrubs around Australia. Get lost in these mazes – and have heaps of fun doing it!
They are located:
36. Visit the Botanical gardens
Botanical gardens may sound like a huge snooze fest – but they are a treasure of beauty and information. Join a guided tour and have the kids identify some of the better known species of plants!
37. Build a sand castle at the beach
Kids of all ages love building sand castles or any structure on the beach, their imagination thrives in open-ended play.
38. Go Whale Watching
Countless coastlines around Australia are home to the most beautiful whales on the planet, the humpback! See these curious giants close up – it is truly a wonderful experience for the whole family!
39. Play name that place game
Utilise your flat screen TV for expanded viewing when playing this game. Download pictures and flags of famous places, create a slide show gallery and have your kids guess the name of that place.
40. Visit the Legoland Discovery Centre in Melbourne
LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre is a unique family attraction located in Australia’s leading shopping centre, Chadstone – The Fashion Capital. With 12 different LEGO® experiences within the attraction, there is something new and exciting to experience on every visit to the ultimate indoor LEGO playground.
41. Go for a nature walk
It is much healthier when you turn a walk into a nature walk with your children. This gives them the opportunity to explore and appreciate the natural world.
42. Do playground Olympics
Grab out your camera to capture memories of their funny faces as you watch the children practice their kiddie marathon! Playgrounds make the best place for them to run around, climb up the monkey bars and jump. Get the kids active and out of the house!
43. Play candy scavenger hunt.
Classic kiddie game that never fades to thrill kids. There are many scavenger hunt ideas, but sweets make the best.
44. Visit the library
There are lots of fun activities children can do on library visits along with other kids, bookmark contests, games and lots more.
45. Fly a kite
Why is it fun? Simply because it’s an ultimate carefree pastime. Kids love seeing a colourful kite soaring gracefully overhead, a definition of sheer fun!
46. Visit the museum
Learning fun facts and hunt details in museums have an advantage in preparing your child’s historical knowledge when the school holiday is over.
47. Go on a kids eat free food tour
It’s nice to go out for family meals in restaurants, but often times, it is a bit uncomfortable for the budget. Great news! Many restaurants have special promos for kids ages 12 and below to eat for free!
48. Trampoline joy jump!
Bouncing high is crazy fun! Kids love it and it’s the best way to wear them out. You can either purchase your own trampoline or much rather visit SKY ZONE Trampoline Park or BOUNCE (Tingalpa) if it is not too far from your location.
49. Play hidden objects (in a sandbox) game
Little ones can’t get enough digging for goodies inside a sandbox. Using balls with numbers, letters, shape sorting cubes or those cute hide n’ seek squeak eggs are better options than small toys. Ask Daddy to build a sandbox instead of purchasing one.
50. Play kids secret hide away
Feed their imagination. Whether indoor or outdoors, building a den, fort or tent whatever you want to call it, is every child’s fantasy, especially when joined with other kids. So those old curtains, cushions and boxes will be put to use.
51. Pick and count the fruits!
Kids love sitting down in front of a huge basket full of freshly picked fruits. Ask them to count and transfer it to their individual baskets, or segregate the ripe and unripe ones.
52. Do origami for kids
This Japanese art of paper-folding can make cute funny faces of animals and much more. It’s another fun activity for children that will surely sharpen their creativity, concentration and problem-solving skills. So take out those old newspapers and magazines that you are no longer needing and recycle! Here’s a sample video tutorial.
53. Have a DIY training with Daddy
Kids get curious about what Daddy does inside the garage or in the backyard when he is not at work. So why not turn this into a mega-meaningful bonding time for the children to learn how to build and repair some cool projects?
54. Learn music lessons
What if your child is the next The Voice (AU) winner? Many great singers started with playing guitar or other musical instruments along with singing.
55. Play beach cricket
Both parents and their children can have a great bonding moment at the beach playing cricket. This sport has the benefits of eye coordination and physical fitness.
56. Do a kiddie bedroom makeover
It is pretty hard to plan re-arranging your kids’ bedrooms during the school term, so might as well do this on their school holiday. Spruce up your bedroom decor and activate your child’s makeover ideas!
57. Play mini golf
Try adding another level of entertainment on your mini golf, put some stuffed toys, colourful flags or whatever you can add and make a fun theme.
58. Play with play dough
Don’t you find it cute watching your child’s face with the tongue out while concentrating on forming shapes out of clay?
59. Go roller skating.
Skating is hip, enjoyable and a great morning exercise around your neighbourhood.
60. Play hide and seek.
Throught the ages, kids love the thrill of playing hide and seek.
61. Visit a distant family member.
Visiting a distant family makes a healthy relationship, especially for kids to spend some bonding moment with their cousins.
62. Visit a car show.
Little boys love watching hot rods. This will motivate them to dream BIG.
63. Hold a mini fashion show.
Little girls and even little boys love playing dress up in Mum and Dad´s clothes of course! Don´t forget to grab the camera and take cute shots.
64. Play balloon games.
Choose from Balloon Stomp (fill pre-blown balloons with lolly treats,) or Valley Balloon that they can play outside. Both old fashion balloon games will surely get them energised.
65. Make a card board cloud bookshelf.
All you need is a pair of scissors. Cut the card board into cloud shapes, glue or a double-sided tape and add whatever decorations you like. Here’s the instructions how to do it. For instructions, see below.
66. Do a lolly stick photo puzzle.
Cut out pictures of celebrities from old magazines or coloured papers in animal shapes and glue them on craft sticks.
67. Do a morning boot sale.
Kids can sort the toys, books and clothes that they are no longer using – they love selling their old stuff.
68. Do a sweater makeover
Make those boring sweaters look adorable without sewing. A fabric glue will do the work on adding decorations.
69. Head out into the community.
Children can enjoy participating in many volunteer opportunities like feeding programs or local food shelters, cleaning the streets etc.
70. Visit a thrift shop.
Visit your local thrift shops. You might get amazed of your child’s cheap finds.
71. Play woggle track race.
All you need is a polyethylene foam aka. woggle or pool log and cut it into a half. Better to use a serrated knife to make a clean line. Although this is optional, you can also put a shoe box at the bottom of the track to catch all the little toy cars or marbles. Don’t forget to add a START and FINISH line flags.
72. Play tarp throwing games.
Cut up holes on a tarp that you are no longer using and you have your cheap throwing game!
73. Clean windows.
It’s not all about playing during school holidays, they can also help on doing household chores. Believe it or not but some children find cleaning windows fun. You can give them a sprayer and a colourful sponge or cloth, they will be ready for action!
74. Do knitting and crocheting.
I bet the little fashionistas love to flaunt their pretty knitted carry bags, hats and long vests when school term begins, crocheting is a lovely idea to spur on the designer in them.
75. Bubble bathing your pet dog.
When school holiday begins, mums need a backup plan to get the kids busy while Mum is busy with the household chores. Bathing a dog is as fun as just playing. So prepare your giant metal pail, doggy shampoo and start wish-washing your cute dog!
76. Make balloon and ping pong plates.
Balloon ping pong is a fun indoor or outdoor game for kids and would only need basic supplies to make. Have the kids design the paper plates and then tape the craft sticks at the back of each paper plate to create paddles. They can now hit the balloon back and fourth.
77. Make fruit kabobs (kebabs).
While Mum is busy cooking for lunch, kids can have fun making health-ilicious fruit skewers.
78. Play whilst washing dishes.
Who says kids can’t play while washing dishes? Of course, they can! Have the kids do some dishwashing practice outdoors, a big basin or water table, colourful sponges and soap. You don’t need to have them wash the ceramic plates, let them take care of the small plastic containers, plastic cups and utensils.
79. Play backyard scrabble.
Let kids burn some calories while learning, create super-sized lawn letters for a game of words!
80. Play milk jug ball game.
Play a catching game with just the use of milk jugs! You can use laundry detergent jugs as an alternative. Just cut the bottoms off the empty milk jugs, clean it and let it dry. Add some colourful craft tapes to cover the edges and you are good to play!
81. Have a family reading day.
One of the best ways to entice your kids to improve their reading skills is by reading with the family — not only surrounding them with reading materials to motivate them, but reading it with them can help them more!
82. Make a kiddie kaleidoscope.
Isn’t it pretty seeing vibrant colour patterns as you look closely through a kaleidoscope? You can make these for your kids. Here’s a video tutorial of how to make one.
83. Get them on to audio books and podcasts.
Kids love listening to stories but it is just easier for some parents to let them listen to podcasts and audio books. Mums can run the errands at home while the kid is busy holding the headphone to his ear. Plus these are fantastic for playing in the car on a long trip to entertain the whole family!
84. Water gun war!
Water play makes a mess, but it’s pretty normal for kids to get entertained for hours playing with water guns – even the adults! But if you don’t have water guns, water bombs would do too!
85. Make a giant rainbow bubble.
Let’s add more life to the bubbles we blow up in the air by making it colourful. All you need is a dishwashing soap, food colouring, three-feet long dowels and cotton piping or clothes line rope, two eye screws and two washers. You get the complete instructions here.
86. Have a fantasy play day.
Kids love role plays – especially fantasy plays. We just need to provide them the things that inspire their imagination, like making them a pirate ship using a big cardboard box, play sets, flashlights, Mum’s sleep mask and other stuff for a fantasy play.
87. Nail art with Mummy!
This is a great bonding idea for mums and daughters. If you have the budget, there are many child-specific nail polish brands you can purchase for your little girls. Suncoat Girl, Hopscotch Kids, and Piggy Paint are the best ones.
88. Hold a magic trick show.
If your child has the interest in magic tricks, then hold a magic trick show and invite his friends to watch him.
89. Play typing test.
Get those small fingers warmed up kiddos! Parents don’t let your kids be left behind in a computer lesson at school by typing with one finger each hand. Many online typing games have been made specifically to loosen up those fingers.
90. Do a bird watch activity.
Some kids are interested in learning more about their feathery friends of the sky. They can learn how to build bird’s nest or put bird treats if there are trees nearby. They can write on their bird-journal the birds they have seen.
91. Write a joint story
This is one of the best classic boredom-buster activities that improves the creative thinking skills of children. One kid starts off the story and then take turns by adding a sentence until the story is complete. Have one kid publish it with pictures added to make a fun story.
92. Create constellation in a jar.
Even us as kids, we dreamt of touching the bright stars we gaze at night. There’s a version of that you can keep in your kids’ room. The how tos can be found here.
93. Do house hop playdates.
Parents join forces to fight against school holiday boredom! Have the kids with their friends play any games every day in different homes. At least they don’t have to go for a sleepover, so who’s home next for the teddy bear tea party tomorrow?
94. Have a wild west party.
With just a sock filled with polyester fibre, wood dowel, two buttons for the eyes and a little sewing, you can make a hobby horse for the kids.
95. Have a mini wonder terrarium kids activity.
This is a very easy and cute terrarium that will definitely make the mummy-kiddo bonding time on the table a fun learning experience. Here’s a DIY Terrarium Craft for Kids: Make a Gnome Garden tutorial.
96. Visit an art gallery.
Children can take inspiration from art galleries, so it is always good to take them to art exhibits. You never know your child might become one of the art legends one day.
97. Play fireworks in a jar.
This idea is great for grade school kids and even preschoolers. The great thing about this colourful fireworks experiment is, you can mostly get the supplies you need from home! Below is a video tutorial for this cool science experiment.
98. Pool noodle boats.
There are lots of playful crafts you can make out of woggles or pool noodles. We have already mentioned how to make a woggle track race. This time, we can make little boats that kids can play in a water bin.
99. Teach them about sorting and recycling.
I have enlisted here a number artworks from recycled materials and with that, kids should already know the value of reusing, recycling and reinventing. But, before that they need to practice sorting recyclables first, this should be a starter for self-discipline and also help Mum do the household chores.
100. Make a ladybug house.
Kiddos can show their love to the cute lady bugs by making them a nice and comfy home. During school holiday, kids have more time to explore the trees with lady bugs, collect them and move them to a new home.