School holiday project ideas

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Cheap (or free!) ways to keep the kids entertained

School’s almost out – and like most parents, you’re probably already dreading the familiar call…”I’m bored!” So, how to keep the kids happy and entertained at home without busting your budget?

Here’s 5 fun and creative school holiday project ideas that won’t break the bank

  1. Get gardening

Kids love any excuse to get dirty!

  • It doesn’t matter if you don’t have a huge garden or a green thumb.
  • Anyone can create a vegie or herb garden, even if you’re in an apartment. You just need a few pots or planter tubs. Even old tins with some drainage holes will do!
  • Head to your local nursery or hardware store, grab some seeds or small seedlings and some soil, and get gardening.
  • The kids will love watching their plants grow, and even more so if they can end up eating them.
  1. Go camping – at your place!

Skip all the hours of prep and packing, and plan a night out under the stars in your own yard instead!

  • If you haven’t got a tent borrow one from a friend.
  • Try to make the experience as authentic as possible by having dinner and brekkie al fresco too, using your bbq to cook and esky to store your food.
  • Then relax and enjoy a technology-free evening under the stars, perhaps enjoying some backyard cricket and board games.
  1. Make them little Masterchefs

Plan a bake off with your kids!

  • Spend a day helping them to plan a festive meal and cook up a storm.
  • The kids could design menus and invitations to other family members, and put their ‘event hosting’ skills to work by creating a theme and setting the table.
  • Best of all, while they’re having fun you’re giving them some great training to cook dinner and give you a much needed night off every now and then!
  1. Movie night

Bring the cinema to you – for free!

  • Head to your local library or borrow some DVDs from friends.
  • Prepare some fun snacks (or even better, have your little Masterchefs make their own!), perhaps let them invite a friend over, and settle in to enjoy the movies.
  • You could make the night extra-special by taking the TV outside and adding some beanbags or sun loungers to create an outdoor cinema experience.
  1. Treasure hunt

Ahoy, me hearties! With a little planning on your part, this one can keep the kids off your hands for hours!

  • Create a treasure map of your place, or your local park.
  • Create clues for the kids to find and follow, and challenges to complete at each stage. Get creative to make each fun and time consuming!
  • Add little rewards and incentives along the way to keep the kids motivated – perhaps a small treat or prize at certain points that hint at the treasure they’ll uncover at the end.
  • When they’re done, have a picnic lunch together.