If a big Spring Break trip isn’t on the calendar this year, you might be wondering how you’re going to keep the kids entertained for 10 consecutive, school-free days. Fear not! There are tons of fun activities that feel special enough for a school vacation, and will keep you or the sitter and your kids happily entertained at or near home.
10 Fun, Family Activities for a Spring Break Stay-cation
- Go camping in your own backyard. If the temps aren’t feeling sub-zero, pitch a tent in the backyard or on the back deck and have a family night under the stars. If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, check out our round-up of family-friendly camping spots and hit the road!
- Turn your home into a restaurant for a day. With kids to feed, you might already feel like a short order cook, but why not get the kids in on the action by pretending to run a restaurant. You can divvy up duties – setting the table, prep, cooking, serving, being the customer and clean up. It’s a fun way to get little ones involved in menu planning, and hands on in the kitchen, which has been shown to open their minds to trying new foods and appreciating the value of good, whole foods. It’s also a nice opportunity to work on table manners and to talk about money.
- Dive in! Just because you aren’t at the beach, doesn’t mean you can’t take a swim. Bust out your beach bags and head to a pool for the day. Your kids will love it!
- Take a local hike or bike ride. Get outside and get moving with a family hike or bike ride through a familiar or waiting-to-be-discovered part of town. If you don’t already have one, think of investing in a quality baby seat for your bike. You’ll open up tons of opportunities for getting fresh air and exercise with baby in tow.
- Play tourist in your own town. Visit a local attraction you’ve never seen before, whether it be a little known museum, a school or neighborhood park in another area, or even an unfamiliar library branch.
- Wake up in “Paris” or any other foreign land you’d like to visit. With a little advance planning, you can have make-believe feel quite real by greeting your kids with “Bonjour!” and a croissant, sharing books or stories about the land you are visiting (maybe a Madeline story), doing a foreign craft, watching a movie, and making an easy meal together. It’s a fun way to open their minds to new cultures.
- Host a lemonade stand. Even if you don’t live on a street with many passersby, you might be able to recruit some neighbors or friends to come by to buy a cup or two. It takes some time to make a sign, mix up a pitcher of lemonade, set up a stand and wait for your customers!
- Do good. A day off is a fine time to volunteer for a local cause, together as a family. Clean-up a favorite park, help out at a food bank or visit a nursery home to teach your kids the value of giving back.
- Have a family movie night and sleepover. With no early morning alarms to set, you might feel a little more lax about bedtime. Pile the family in front of the TV for a movie or find a fun family-friendly game to play together. Make it more fun with a big batch of popcorn or a special sweet treat. If your kids are past the crib stage, try gathering your sleeping bags and sleeping together sleep-over style.
- Set up a BBQ. Nothing says spring like firing up the grill for burgers and hot dogs. Get the kids involved in the cooking, helping prepare the sides, drinks and desserts. It’s a great way to enjoy a spring break together after a long week.