School Holidays: A Survival Guide

Across Australia parents are either recovering from or in the midst of school holidays (and in New Zealand preparing themselves for the oncoming school break).  Any primary caregiver knows how trying the school holidays can be.  Suddenly kids are out of routine and stuck in the house 24/7 and often both parents and kids can go a little loopy!

  To get my 2 school age boys, the baby and myself through the holidays with our sanity intact, I try and follow a plan over our school break. It looks something like this- each week we do:

  • One  day of painting/ messy craft
  • One town day with a special treat (movies, lunch out, ice creams at the playground etc)
  • A junk craft day
  • A cleaning day (the kids have to help sort etc- we often do their clothes or toy room)
  • One or two play dates (at our house or someone else’s)
  • A cooking day

This means we are getting out of the house and doing something interesting or achieving something tangible for the kids to see/ show their father when he gets home, and it cuts out the “I’m bored”.  I make an effort to ask the kids for one idea of what they most want to do over their school break, often it is going to a friends or Grandma’s house or doing something in town- it gives them something to look forward to!  To help the kids feel like they are actually having a break, I encourage them to stay in their PJ’s for a little longer than usual (sometimes all day), they are allowed to watch TV in the mornings (TV is strictly banned during the week in school time) and lounge around for a while, with no pressure to rush around & get ready, or do anything really!


Taking the kid’s bikes into town means they learn road rules, with the added bonus of tiring them out!

Every school holidays I see the fun and creative ideas of other Mums, compiling fun kits and jars with pop sticks with activities on them- I always have the best intentions but never the time to carry these things out, though I do hope to do a nature treasure hunt this holidays with some friends- I’ll let you know how it goes!!!


Sometimes a giant train track & all day in their pj’s is all they need


What do you do over the holidays to survive?



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