100 School Holiday Activities

Are you looking for ideas for ways to spend the school holidays without breaking the budget? Here is my list of 100 things you can do, for little to no cost.

  1. Make your own clay dough. You use it like Play Doh, and can bake it in the oven once finished.
  2. Have a pillow fight.
  3. Pop on your favourite music and have a disco.
  4. Have the kids rearrange a room of their choice.
  5. Make butterfly paintings.
  6. Have a movie night. Borrow some new titles from your local library, make homemade popcorn, and dim the lights.
  7. Using sticks found outside, make crowns and wands.
  8. Have a karaoke competition with your favourite tunes.
  9. Make bubble mix.
  10. Make a comic.
  11. Paint some rocks. It is easier than it sounds, and is heaps of fun.
  12. Visit the local library.
  13. Make coloured spirals from water bottles.
  14. Visit the local pool.
  15. Design your dream house plans.
  16. Go on a nature hunt.
  17. Make a zine.
  18. Have a board games day.
  19. Head to Bunnings and pick up some free cardboard boxes, then head home to make a cardboard creation. My son makes one each year, from a spy base to a castle with a drawbridge, it takes him days to be fully finished. As a bonus, he then plays in it for the rest of the holidays.
  20. Have a water fight.
  21. Make your own bowling alley with some empty drink bottles full of rice, and a basketball.
  22. Make musical instruments from containers, bottle tops, sticks and rice.
  23. Do some backyard camping.
  24. Go stargazing.
  25. Make your own chalk.
  26. Have a Lego building competition, no instructions allowed.
  27. Buy some white t-shirts and use textas and paint to decorate them.
  28. Make a scavenger hunt.
  29. Write a letter in invisible ink.
  30. Walk to the local park for a play.
  31. Make homemade icy poles.
  32. Write an actual letter to a friend, mail it, wait for a reply.
  33. Make jewellery from buttons, beads, glitter and pasta.
  34. Send each other coded secret messages.
  35. Have a baking day. Let each child choose one thing they want to bake, and then have a sampling party at the end.
  36. Write and perform a play for other family members and friends.
  37. Go to the local museums.
  38. Local shopping centres often offer free school holiday activities such as face painting or crafts.
  39. Visit a local animal shelter to play with the cats, or walk the dogs.
  40. Get the kids to make an inspiration collage for their rooms.
  41. Write a story together.
  42. Teach your kids a skill they are wanting to learn, such as how to use the camera, or how to do some woodworking.
  43. Make some greeting cards.
  44. Read a book together. Better yet, read several.
  45. Play a video game.
  46. Go fishing.
  47. Make kites.
  48. Go to the botanical gardens.
  49. Give the kids a set budget and get them to plan a family holiday.
  50. Have a spring clean.
  51. Do a jigsaw puzzle together.
  52. Do some gardening.
  53. See who can ‘ask Google’ the silliest question.
  54. Buy some ice cream and various toppings (marshmallows, chocolate bars, biscuits, wafers, fruit) and see who can concoct the craziest sundae.
  55. Try your hand at sketching a still life.
  56. See what images you can discover in the clouds.
  57. Two words: science experiments.
  58. Have a picnic.
  59. Make slime.
  60. Build a fairy garden.
  61. Make paper masks.
  62. Tape paper under the table, lay on the floor, and paint like Michelangelo.
  63. Give the kids fake money and set up a shop with items from around the house, to teach them about the value of money. They are never too young to start learning.
  64. Make your own board game.
  65. Re-write the lyrics to a favourite song.
  66. Make cornflour paint and paint the driveway, it washes right off.
  67. Make paper bunting to decorate the kids rooms.
  68. Make windchimes out of cutlery.
  69. Try your hand at finger knitting.
  70. Make lava lamps.
  71. Have a midnight snack.
  72. Make detailed maps and the burn the edges.
  73. Try geocaching.
  74. Using a roll of butchers paper, trace around everyone’s body, then get them decorate themselves however they wish. Hang them side by side for all to see.
  75. Make a list of goals for the coming year.
  76. Make your own giant water pillow.
  77. Make an indoor obstacle course for the kids to wake up to.
  78. Have a themed day: pirates, detectives, circus. Make everything that day relate to the theme.
  79. Try origami.
  80. Collect and press flowers and leaves.
  81. Make sock puppets.
  82. Keep a holiday journal that you all contribute to.
  83. Take your bikes to the local BMX track.
  84. Make hair chalk and go crazy.
  85. Make an indoor cubby house under tables and chairs.
  86. Play balloon tennis.
  87. Learn how to juggle.
  88. Make mocktails.
  89. Go to your local recycling centre or tip shop, and see what treasures it holds.
  90. Make individual pizzas.
  91. Make fingerprint or footprint art.
  92. Head into nature and make some rubbings.
  93. Keep a nature journal. Stick in found items such as feathers and leaves.
  94. Buy a pack of tattoo pens from K-Mart and give each other fake tattoos.
  95. Dust off the camcorder and make some goofy family movies.
  96. Make your own wearable art and put on a fashion show.
  97. Make a time capsule to bury or store, depending on whether you are a renter or owner.
  98. Play cards. This book is a gem.
  99. Make grocery shopping fun. Give each child a list of ‘treasure items’ to find in the supermarket. For little ones, simply use cut out pictures from some junk mail. As they bring each item to you, tick it off. Once their treasure has all been found, let them choose one ‘super rare’ item from a selection you give them (a book, ice cream, their favourite biscuits etc).
  100. Have a ‘yes’ day.  Say yes to all of their requests, within reason.