It doesn’t have to cost the earth – things to do with 5 -12 year olds

When the school holidays come, grandparents take their turn to keep the children amused and as we know only to well the costs can soon mount up.

These suggestions may be also be suitable for younger children – you know their likes and abilities.

As for teens, well to quote my friend Anne

‘What teenager wants to go out with a grandparent unless it is to pay for a shopping spree!’

Here are a few suggestions of fun but cost effective things to do.

Explore your roots. No dusty drawing of family trees. Take the children to your first school, the street you lived in when you were their age, The place their parents were born.
Take pictures and put together a memories book.

taking photos

Design your own quiz walkWalk around a few streets, local park or shops. Look out for signs, odd buildings, statues and make up a route with simple questions such as ‘What time does the park close’
For ideas look at some of Papa Joe’s quiz walks

Visit a city/community farm.  The Federation of City Farms & Community Gardens has a website where you can find your nearest community farm.  These are community  projects run by volunteers and unlike commercial farming attractions are either free or have a small entrance charge.  They usually rely on donations, and may have a cafe, shop, or horse riding lessons to provide extra income.

Surrey Docks Farm 1

Check out a museum. Things have certainly changed from when our daughters were young. At weekends and in school holidays many museums run workshops and activities which are free or have a small charge. Organisations such as Kids In Museums have encouraged museums to become family friendly.

poole museum 7

Visit the Library.  Most libraries run story time and activities for children during the holidays.  You do not have to be a member to participate.  Our local library gives stickers and has a Summer Reading Challenge.


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  1. Mums do travel

    These are some great ideas – I love number 1.

  2. Catherine

    I really love the idea of a quiz walk – thanks for sharing 🙂

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