Kids · Parenting

9 Cheap Ways To Entertain The Kids

School holidays; the time when parents struggle to find things to keep the kids entertained without bankrupting themselves. Add to that unpredictable weather making it twice as hard to come up with ideas to stay out of the Summer rain showers. With this in mind I thought I would share my top ideas for keeping bored kids busy at home without costing you an arm and a leg.

Homemade Slime

Slime has been an ongoing trend for a while now and what could be better than making your very own at home. Not only is there hours worth of fun to be had playing with the slime, but kids love to get involved in making and customising their own mixture with different colours and textures. We have shared out own fool proof slime recipe on the blog previously which uses a handful of inexpensive ingredients found in most homes. Plus, the best thing is, if kept in an airtight container it will last for ages! Ideal for whipping out when you hear those dreaded words; “I’m bored”.

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Make A Collage

Kids love nothing better than a spot of cutting and sticking and making a collage together is a great way to wile away an hour or two. You can use anything to make your collage; I collect leaflets that come through the front door, greetings cards, magazines etc. plus any other bits and pieces of craft stuff from left over projects are perfect. Then all you need is some paper/card, scissors*and glue* and your creativity has no limit.

Have A Movie Day

As a family we all love movies and enjoy nothing more than a movie day at home, plus it’s cheap as chips too! Why not re-watch a DVD you already have or stream a movie if you have an online service? If you fancy watching something different there are plenty of inexpensive ways; visit your local charity shop, rent a film from the library or check out Music Magpie – they often have Buy One Get One Free offers on their DVD’s which start at only £1.99 inc. delivery (I have no affiliation with Music Magpie). All you need then is some cheap snacks – popcorn and jelly sweets are our favourites!

Homemade Play Dough

It’s not only kids who like play dough I must admit I’m a massive fan; I find it very therapeutic! We love to make our own dough as it’s so much fun to make together and lasts for ages if stored correctly. Our recipe uses store cupboard items and it super simple to make, check it out here. Why not customise your dough with glitter for a touch of sparkle!

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Junk Modelling

If like me, you have overflowing recycle bags why not make use of the contents whilst having some fun with the kids! All you’ll need is a variety of boxes, bottle tops, toilet roll tubes, plasic tubs, some glue and your imagination!

Painting

When you think of painting I bet you automatically imagine using a brush; brushes are a great way to create a picture but why not think outside the box. There are so many things you can use to paint with here are a few of our favourites:

  • Hands
  • Feet
  • Toilet roll tubes
  • Vegetables/Fruit – who remembers printing with potatoes at school?
  • Toy cars – the wheels make fabulous prints
  • Sponges

We always use Crayola Washable Paint *with the kids as we have found it to be the only one that is truly washable. Even wearing an apron the kids still manage to get it all over their hands and faces and with Crayola it just rubs off with no effort at all. A great way to get everyone involved in making your creation is by purchasing a cheap roll of lining paper to use instead of paper, giving everyone plenty of room to collaborate on a fabulous work of art.

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Go On A Picnic

Don’t worry you don’t even need to venture into the garden if the weather is bad, I’m talking about a carpet picnic. Invite all those teddies and dolly’s along to join in too! We like to spread out a blanket on the living room floor and make ourselves a tea party, making lunch feel like a ‘proper’ event! Why not use cookie cutters to shape your sandwiches or add some paper plates to give your picnic a posher Afternoon Tea feel. You could even enjoy your carpet picnic as part of your movie day!

Build A Den

Hands up who loved den building as a child! Such a simple, fun idea that will keep the kids entertained for hours. Den’s can be created in so many different ways; from a simple sheet over the dining room table to a more complex structure built using the sofa cushions. However, their den is built the kids will be having fun using their creativity and imagination and it’s completely free – what’s not to love!

Decorate Biscuits

I’m a terrible baker! It’s a sad fact to admit but my cakes and biscuits never seem to go right. It’s this that lead me to find a ‘cheats’ way to make biscuits with the kids and it always goes down a storm. All you need is a cheap packet of shop bought biscuits, I find Rich Tea work well, icing sugar and decorations. Simply make some icing using the icing sugar and let the kids slather it all over the biscuits (and probably themselves too) then decorate. There are so many things you could use to personalise your biscuits; our favourites are:

  • Chocolate chips
  • Smarties
  • Sprinkles
  • Jelly Laces
  • Buttons

And the very best part of this activity is that you can eat your creations! They would be ideal to include as part of your carpet picnic menu too!

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