It is always an expensive time when the kids are home from school and require entertaining. However, there are options to help you save money and get the kids involved while keeping them entertained too.
The trick is to always plan ahead, whether you are going on a day trip or just spending some time down the local park. Have a think about where you are likely to spend money with your kids during this time and see if there is any way you can do this with a cheaper option. It is not a good idea to make your kids go without, especially if they are with friends who are getting what they want; however, being able to offer an alternative, and to their friends as well, may be a good solution.
If you find that money is very tight, make sure that you are taking full advantage of the financial assistance available to you and your kids. This guide at GrowingPower lays out many of the benefits available to parents.
Preparing the perfect picnic for kids
If you are going anywhere where you are likely to be for a long time, make a picnic to take. It is a lot cheaper than eating out or buying ready-made sandwiches etc., from a food outlet. Also, if you get the kids involved in making their picnics, you may find that is good entertainment in itself for them, and they are more likely going to eat something they have made themselves than something you get from a shop.
As this article from Nursery World correctly illustrates, kids love picnics, especially when it involves homemade cakes and biscuits served on their favourite plates. Make sure to have plenty of drinks with you, too, and to take all your rubbish home with you.
Organise your kids to have a tabletop sale
It is great fun for the kids to root out all their unused or unwanted items and make a stall to sell their goods at, whether it is at a local tabletop sale or car boot sale, or even on the forecourt of your house. This can also be educational as it will teach your kids about the value of money as well as helping them with a little mathematics.
It will also get your kids used to sorting through their items and teach them about recycling. When it comes to some items, it can be hard and heart-breaking for kids to let go. However, this is made easier when these items, such as cute teddies, are seen to go to another loving home rather than in a bag for the charity shop or, even worse, in the rubbish bin.
Look for money off vouchers
Although there are many free things to do in your area, you can also check out any money-off vouchers or discounts for days out with the kids. These are usually found in newspapers or magazines, or if you go on to the company’s website, they may have details of discounted times or special offers for school kids admissions. This will break up the kids’ summer holiday nicely if spaced out over the weeks that they are off school and can give some good, well-earned relief to parents as the entertaining will be already in place at the venues.