Does anyone else have that fear of the after school / pre dinner time warp that happens ever so often? I like to book playdates or visits to the library where I can but these are some of the activities I have tried to keep my 4 year old happy after school. I am sure they can be adapted as they get older too.
- Tractor cleaning – I genuinely needed to clean the outdoor toys, they had been left out during some snow and rain. So I filled a bucket with warm bubbly water (the kids loved the bubbles!) and gave them two of my small collection of IKEA washing up brushes that I keep buying to my husbands disgust! The children were so into it I even managed to get some veg ready for dinner! winner!
2. Cupcakes- this was a good treat but also was a great post school activity. I bought a packet which I know is cheating but actually the stickers are worth it. By the time they have mixed and spooned the mixture in you can be busy getting dinner ready! Then they decorated them as I tidied too. Both my 2 and 4yr olds loved this and as long as you aren’t too particular about presentation they worked independently with me pottering around them!
3. Paint sticks- oh my goodness these have revolutionised painting in our house. My daughter seems to enjoy any sort of craft but my son usually paints a page blue and then is finished!! Which is why I usually save painting for days when we are snowed in etc. But paint sticks seem to have them hooked and you can really stretch older children with some scratch painting instead. A huge thank you to the lovely lady who gave these to us- a fantastic present!
4. Orchard toys- these are just a great way of me spending time with my son after school before the making tea/grizzly sister phase of the day! They are short enough to not drag on into tiredness tantrums and a bit educational. When my son is in the mood these are lovely moments! A little bonus of these are that if you are bringing your child up bilingually like us they have limited text so can be great oracy in any language!
5. A film evening- We definitely have evenings where I know my son is so tired he will either spontaneously combust into rage or just cry alot. I make my popcorn and then we all sit and watch a film cuddled on the sofa. If you want to stretch it out then you could make cones for the popcorn and decorate them first!
We are only just beginning to enter this whole after school thing. I want my son to do swimming lessons, gym etc but I do really value the importance of time at home together so want to make sure we are doing it a few nights a week if we can. What do you do after school?! Any tips?! Any definite don’ts?!!