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school holiday ideas :)

My children broke up this holiday only days before Christmas, this meant that we have a long time between the whole Christmas New Year buzz and school going back. This can feel like a bit of a drag after the hype of Christmas, without mentioning the expense involved meaning the last thing you want to do now is go and spend even more on days out.

Here are my top ten activities to keep the little ones entertained in the break between new year and new term.

1: Playdough - so easy and so versatile. If you haven't already tried my snow playdough from my previous blog, take a look, its so easy and entertains for so long.

2: Go on a bike ride - get the outdoors, getting them out on bikes and scooters stops the nagging "I'm cold". That's why I love doing this  with my kids as it keeps them warm as they are doing something more than walking, plus getting outdoors in the fresh air brightens their mood for when you get home.

3: Make a boglin - (see pic below) boglins are amazing, find the perfect mud, make it into a ball, slap it on a tree and decorate. How simple yet it offers so many opportunities for learning and sensory exploration.

4: Den building - No matter if it is a simple den under some blankets and chairs in the living room or a more elaborate den created outdoors. Get on pintrest get some ideas and create. Plus it gives them a safe space to play afterwards, making it a double activity. If you can leave the den up it will also enable play on future days to and can develop to be anything their imagination desires.

5: Story Boxes - Create a story box with a book you know they will love, and some complimenting accessories. For example puppets or toys, colouring pages, fact books, puzzles, small world toys or anything else you find. Then read the book with them, ask questions and see where these play prompts take your child's play. You could even add the puppets or small world to a tray with other accessories and watch their play develop.

6: Use those craft kits your child will have collected over Christmas rather than stash them in a cupboard.

7: Make a Chrristmas Sensory Tray -  Children are drawn to Christmas decorations however we spend all of our time asking them not to touch. Add tinsel, lights, baubles and anything else you can find and let them explore. You can see one I made earlier below.

8: Make your thank you cards - Take care of one of those Christmas jobs. No matter if its drawing or getting paints out and getting creative let the children make their own thank you cards for Christmas gifts.

9: Get some snow - Where I am in North Yorkshire I have had no snow so I will be making my own using either fake snow powder or cloud dough. Cloud dough is amazing it cleans up easily and moulds into shapes. Simply mix one part baby or olive oil with  eight parts plain flour. I have even used this in sand pits instead of sand in the summer.

10: Make some story stones - These get children taking, spark imagination and make some lovely discussion and family time. You can buy the kit from my website or  make your own you need large stones, marker pens or paints and modge podge or glue to finish. Then get creative making your own story characters or prompts to then retell your own story. You can see some of mine below.

I hope you have an amazing play and family filled break and I would love to hear which activities you tried drop me an email or message on facebook.

Hayley x

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