For most families, 2020 has seen the longest absence from school in living memory. With half-term coming up, you’d be forgiven for thinking “Oh no, not again”. But half-terms, and October half-terms in particular, can be magical weeks. Concentrate on the positives, and you’ll grin like a Jack-o’-lantern all week long.
A Chance For Everyone To Be Together
First and foremost, the break from school gives families a chance to spend more time with each other. These opportunities are so precious. 30 years from now, you’ll give anything to go back in time and spend a week with the kids again. It’s easy to forget this, among all the noise and demands that children bring (especially if you still need to get some work done!). But try to take a step back and appreciate the moment. You’re here with them, right now, and they’re still so young. These days will be gone before you know it.
The Craftiest Of Holidays
You may be kept inside by the changing weather, but October half-term is easy to fill with craft projects that everyone can enjoy. Just for starters, you might try:
* Carving pumpkins.
* Making Halloween costumes.
* Putting up Halloween decorations.
* Make a ‘Guy’ ahead of bonfire night (5 November).
* Diwali is also coming up (14 November), and is one of the most craft-friendly festivals.
* Collect fallen leaves, acorns, conkers etc, for these activities.
* Browse hundreds of other crafting ideas in the Kidadl collection.
Autumn is the best season for exploring the natural world. Our parks, gardens and woods look so beautiful as the leaves turn yellow and orange. And with meeting friends indoors either limited or impossible, the great outdoors has never felt more inviting.
With Halloween at the end of the holidays, finding fun family activities is an open goal/ghoul.
* Try setting up a trick-or-treat evening with toys.
* Make yourself invisible like a ghost, using this clever trick with smartphones/tablets.
* Settle down to a spooky movie. All the streaming services are flagging up their best Halloween content, so finding a good film is a piece of (pumpkin) cake.
You Can Start Talking About Christmas And Hanukkah
Even the grinches among us must concede that we could use some festive cheer this year. October half-term feels like a good time to start talking about your family plans. Meeting up with close relations might not be possible this year, so you’ll want to try and make Christmas or Hanukkah special in other ways. Here are some ides:
* Use half-term to talk to the kids about what they’d most love to do in December.
* Start drawing up gift lists. It’ll pay to get your seasonal shopping planned early this year, to avoid busy high streets and a crunch on delivery services in mid-December.
* Start making cards. You can buy card-making kits from hobby shops and stationers, but it’s also fun to make your own from whatever’s in your craft box.
* Start a ‘one xmas/Hanukkah thing a week’ drive, where you pick up one item per week to store away until the festivities begin. Perhaps start with a box of fancy biscuits, or a new bauble for the Christmas tree, or a pack of candles… kids will feel that first tingle of magic.
A Break From Work?
Many working parents will have spare holiday time left over, having abandoned plans to travel earlier in the year. Others may still be on furlough for a final week. This could be a rare opportunity to put work behind you for a week and spend time giving the kids your full attention. Make the most of it. (Naturally, this won’t be possible for everyone, especially those who had to use holiday time to cover childcare during the cancelled summer term.)
At Kidadl we pride ourselves on offering families original ideas to make the most of time spent together at home or out and about, wherever you are in the world. We strive to recommend the very best things, that are suggested by our community and are things we would do ourselves - our aim is to be the trusted friend to parents.
We try our very best, but cannot guarantee perfection. We will always aim to give you accurate information at the date of publication - however, information does change, so it's important you do your own research, double-check and make the decision that is right for your family.
Kidadl provides inspiration for everything from family days out to online classes, arts, crafts and science experiments. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. Our recommended activities are based on age but these are a guide. We recommend that these ideas are used as inspiration, that ideas are undertaken with appropriate adult supervision, and that each adult uses their own discretion and knowledge of their children to consider the safety and suitability.
Kidadl cannot accept liability for the execution of these ideas, and parental supervision is advised at all times, as safety is paramount. Anyone using the information provided by Kidadl does so at their own risk and we can not accept liability if things go wrong.
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