Working parents often feel like they don’t spend enough family time with their children. Some parents try to compensate for this by buying their kids expensive presents or sending them off to luxury destinations. Expensive presents or not, what children really want is to spend quality time with their parents. You can turn everyday errands into fun time but it is also helpful to set aside at least one day a week as family day. Here are some easy and frugal, fun things to do with kids for family day. They may be simple things to do but when you slow down and enjoy teaching your child and interacting with your child, you will find it these simple moments can be fun, memorable, and meaningful in the best way.
Fun Things To Do With Kids For Family Day:
1. Enjoy the outdoors as a family.
Find a nice park, forest, lake or any “green” spot in your area and spend a whole non-working day outside. If it’s warm, you can pack blankets, sandwiches, water, playing cards, frisbee, volleyball, swimsuits, scissors, old magazines, drawing pads and pencils. Mountain or forest areas, offer a perfect way for good old family bonding time with an educational flourish. Or, visit your local parks. You can go on a scavenger hunt, or start an interesting rock or leaf collection. Take a family hike and make a scrapbook of all the things you picked up during the hike. You can also use your backyard as the base for outdoor family activities but going some place helps keep family members from drifting back inside to separate projects.
2.Take your kids grocery shopping.
I bet you didn’t expect to find shopping on a list of fun things to do with kids for family day, but when done right, it can be a lot of fun as well as a learning experience. If this is a new activity for you, go to the grocery store when you have a small list and plenty of time so you don’t rush. If you can walk to the grocery store, that’s a big plus. Instead of concentrating on driving, you’ll have more time to talk to your kids you will all enjoy the exercise . On the way there and back, you can invent different games, talk about what you see around you, or just goof around.
Once inside the store, you can assign tasks to your children to help you get everything on your list quickly. (It sounds simple but sometimes, the fun is in enjoying the everyday things of life.) Kids actually enjoy helping if you give them the opportunity to help and if you make it challenging. You can let kids see who can find a certain item first or have them help you determine which brand is the best buy or the healthiest. Kids love learning especially if you encourage them and praise them for their efforts.
3. Let your kids in on practical household “secrets”.
Another suggestion for fun things to do with kids is to just involve them in things that you do. For example, if your child makes a stain on his or her shirt, work together to remove it using old tricks (they vary, depending on the type of stain and fabric of the shirt; you can read about it online). If the light goes off, show your kids how to replace it. Talk to them about stuff that goes on in the house, because they are curious about everything, and participating in household activities will not only get you extra help in the house, but also make them feel useful. The trick here is that it is all in the presentation, make it special and fun that your are sharing this information with them.
4. Have a “Kids Cook Day” once a week, or once a month.
“Kids Cook Day” can be the day when you will eat for dinner whatever your children dish out from the fridge and prepare for you. Of course, you are allowed to help them a little or just give them directions. This way you’ll rest from cooking for one night, and your children will have a pleasant feeling of accomplishment. This will be one of your kid’s favorite family fun things to do because they love feeling empowered. This night can be very simple for younger kids, maybe sandwiches and fruit, and get a little more complex as they get older and you can teach them to boil pasta or cook eggs.
5. Family Craft Night.
Collect used paper, toilet rolls, empty toothpaste tubes, old mascara, anything you’re not using anymore, and put in a big box. When you’ve collected enough trinkets, you can practice having weekly or monthly shows, where your kids will make stuff out of used items and present them to you in an exhibition. If you have more upcycle activities like this, your children will learn to appreciate creativity more than expensive gifts.
Most people refer to Sunday as “family day”, or “activity days”, when the whole family comes together for some quality time. It really doesn’t have to be Sunday; in fact, it can be any day of the week. The main thing is to ensure you always have at least one day a week that is put away for some major de-stressing and bonding as a family. Here are some more fun things to do with kids for family day.
6. Have a matinee or movie night.
Transform your living room into your very own film theater. Make some movie night snacks or throw some popcorn in the microwave and take out some Coke or fruit shakes. You can arrange the furniture to face the television (or do away with chairs altogether and get comfy on the rug). Tell the kids earlier in the day that they have to “earn” their movie tickets by helping with the family chores.
7. Get artsy and creative together.
Spend an afternoon being creative together! Art is one of the best forms of self-expression and it is definitely one of the fun things to do with kids for family day. You can paint, draw, or mold clay, and then hold your own family art exhibit in the living room afterward. Alternatively, you can work on photo albums that are sitting around waiting for pictures to be placed in their pages or even make photo books from the photos on your iphone. Scrapbooking is a fun way to bond and remember good times together.
8. Get Baking
Another one of the fun things to do with kids for family day is bake together. Whether you want to experiment with some new recipes from a cookbook or try to recreate Grandma’s legendary apple pie, baking is a very rewarding experience, mostly because you get to “have your cake and eat it”. You can even let your kids hold a bake sale and learn about entrepreneurship or make something nice to bring to an elderly neighbor.
9. Read to each other.
The practice of story-reading is severely underrated. With all the technology surrounding us, it’s uncommon for us to choose an actual book over a movie, or simply looking things up on Google or Wikipedia. Sit the children comfortably on the floor, and choose a book that is applicable to your child’s level of comprehension. Engage them in the story, allowing them to comment and interject during climactic points in the plot. My kids absolutely love to read and I attribute much of this to just reading aloud to them- starting with picture books and moving to chapter books. They also read to me sometimes so I can take a break and to become better at reading aloud and in front of others.
10. Go for a swim.
There’s nothing like a cool swim at the pool to pass a hot afternoon. Take everyone out for some splashing around in the water and play some pool games. If the pool is not an option, turn on the sprinklers and have fun in the spray or have a water balloon fight.
11. Scavenger Hunt
A scavenger hunt is a great way for the family to get outside in your neighborhood or to explore your town. Create clues to help your kids figure out where they need to go for each step. You can hide the clues in your yard for a backyard hunt, or provide clues as you go at each stop if you plan to do a hunt around the neighborhood or around town.
You can even use the scavenger hunt as an educational day. Provide clues that help your kids learn about famous people, find local art, or visit local attractions. You can even do an indoor scavenger hunt as a fun rainy-day activity. Split into teams and race each other to see who can get the clues and finish the hunt faster.
You can teach your kids a valuable lesson and have a fun family day at the same time. Giving back is an important lesson to instill in your kids, but making it fun means it’s something they’ll look forward to. They may even ask to do it more often.
Choose an organization that your kids will enjoy working for. Animal lovers can volunteer to read to the animals, clean the cages, or walk and groom the pets at a local shelter. Nature lovers can volunteer to help with a neighborhood cleanup day. Food lovers can volunteer at the local homeless shelter or food bank to help provide food to the needy.
Choose an activity that your kids already enjoy then figure out how to turn it into a giving back project.
13. Write a Play
This is a great way to encourage your child’s imagination. Help them write a story with a few characters, a plot twist, and some action. Here are some scene writing prompts if you need ideas. You can even help them put together costumes using items from everyone’s closets. Then, assign parts to family members and act it out together. You can put on a play for friends or just for each other.
For more fun, split into teams and have each team write and act out their own play. Then pick a winner and celebrate with ice cream sundaes.
14. Plant a Garden
Planting a garden as a family will teach your kids the importance of teamwork and will fill them with pride in their hard work. It may even encourage them to eat more vegetables.
Choose fruits and vegetables that are easy to grow, especially if you haven’t planted a garden before, and ones that your family will enjoy eating. No room for a garden in your yard? Plant a container garden on your deck. Use a variety of containers to plant herbs, tomatoes, cucumbers, and lettuce. Plant a fruit tree in a pot. Your kids will love watching their hard work grow.
Make creating and having a routine family day an important part of your family values as it builds bonds. These are just a few of the many examples of fun things to do with kids for family day with just a little bit of imagination, and no money. There are always fancy family fun ideas like a Marvel LIVE show or a trip to the aquarium but the truth is, as long as you’re willing to play with your kids, they’re happy. Take advantage of that while it lasts! Spend time doing family friendly things and making memories. You’ll never regret it!