5 Things To Make And Do With Children Without Spending A Fortune

Published: 16th January 2012
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With most of us currently feeling the pinch during this current global recession and the prospect of endless holidays to entertain our children, are we really able to create fun and excitement for our children without having to spend lots of money?

Here are some tips on how we keep our children motivated without spending a fortune using the great outdoors as well as activities for indoors:

1. Make pictures
Nature provides us with wonderful ways to enjoy ourselves .Why not get the children to gather some leaves,petals,twigs ,feathers and any other outdoor items of nature that can then be used to make lovely pictures. Our children and their friends all enjoy copying pictures of insects using the gathered items. They have made lovely pictures including stick insects using twigs and butterflies and spiders using petals, leaves and twigs.

You could also make other pictures by placing a piece of paper over a tree trunk and rubbing over it with different coloured crayons. Children are amazed by the lovely effect it creates.

2. Make crowns, mobiles, windchimes or necklaces

To make a crown simply take a strip of cardboard and stick a strip of double sided sticky tape on to it and get the children to stick various items like leaves, petals etc on to the crown and then fix onto their heads.

Mobiles can be made by attaching pieces of string to a large piece of wood and allowing children to then tie various items like flowers, twigs, leaves and feathers etc to them . You can then hang them up in the garden. They make a lovely adornment for the garden and the children will love looking out and watching their work of art.

If you have any spare items of kitchen utensils such as saucepans, spoons or ladles etc why not tie them on to a strong piece of wood to make a wind chime and encourage the children to experiment with the different sounds that they will make.

Again a necklace can be made by attaching items like flowers, leaves etc to a piece of string.There will be no end to your child’s creative talents making these items.

3. Create an adventure for a story

There is no better way to stimulate a child’s imagination than creating an adventure and then writing about it. Our girls enjoy going for a walk to some nearby woods and visiting a tree that they call the “tree house” as it has a little door at the bottom of the tree. When we return from our walk we individually write our own story describing who we think lives in the house. It is amazing the completely different versions that emerge. Our youngest daughter isn’t usually too keen to write stories but she loves writing these stories as we all take part and we treat it as big ongoing adventure and keep adding on to the story each time we go to the woods. It is also a good way of persuading them to go for a walk which they would usually regard as boring.

Younger children could draw pictures instead to describe their adventure while the grownups write the story based around the children’s ideas.

4. Make up a treasure hunt

Children love solving clues and finding hidden “treasure”. The treasure doesn’t need to be anything expensive it can merely be some chocolates or sweets. This game can be played indoors or outdoors and can prove ideal in occupying children especially when they have friends over to play.

5. Create a mini Olympics

When the weather permits, especially in the long summer holidays, why not invite some friends over and create an Olympic games. Involve the children in the preparation by getting them to make the medals and try to think of activities that all the children will enjoy and that each of them will have a chance of winning a medal.

6. Cooking Competition

Why not have a cooking competition to decide who can create the best pizza face or the best cake etc. Most children enjoy being creative in the kitchen and will enjoy eating their creation later!

7. Create a cinema environment

When the weather is poor or you just need to relax why not hire a DVD, buy some popcorn and refreshments, draw the curtains and create your own cinema and chill out!

There really are many exciting activities for children that do not need to cost a fortune and can be just as much fun. It just requires a little investment of time on your part. Most children enjoy creating things and there are many different activities for children including those listed above.

I am very fortunate to be able to spend quality time with my children as both my wife and I work from home and can therefore spend that time finding ways to do fun things to do with the children. As we always strive for them to value money we always try to ensure that we teach them fun things to do without costing lots of money.

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