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Fun, free and festive things to do with your children in the Christmas holidays.

free christmas ideas readingmate

The run up to Christmas 2020 has probably looked quite different to last year. That doesn’t mean it has to be any less magical, though! We have some great festive, fun and free Christmas ideas to keep the kids entertained during the festive holiday season.

The real magic of Christmas isn’t wrapped in ribbon or hidden in a stocking. It’s inside us. In our hearts, in your homes. We feel it and we believe it.

I love working in a school at this time of year. The panto, Christingle, Carols at the Church, exchanging Christmas cards, Christmas Jumper Day and even a crafty afternoon (or three!) thrown in for good measure. It’s all just wonderful.

Luckily enough, we were still able to do many of these things. We just had to do them virtually and put a few gifts and cards in isolation in order to exchange (to make sure that all we’re spreading is joy and not germs).

Christmas shouldn’t teach children about things. It should teach them about being with one another.

10 Fun & Free, Christmas Ideas to Entertain Children

Here’s a little list of things that I’ve shared with some of my anxious parents to help get them through the Christmas break:

1. Christmas light walk

There’s nothing I enjoy more than seeing a house dripping with white, gold, green, blue (to be fair I love any colour) lights. The brighter the better. If there’s an inflatable Frosty or Santa nearby I almost combust with excitement. Why not treat yourselves to a walk in your local neighbourhood or town to see which house has the best and worst?

2. Family Quizmas

As we aren’t able to see or visit all the family we would like to this year, why not hold a virtual quiz? We like to make our questions ‘family-based’ which can make for some hilarious (and embarrassing) stories. There are plenty of resources online to help you, making it another of my fave easy and free Christmas ideas!

3. Make a Christmas Eve Box

This is quite the tradition for some families now. You can buy them ready made too but they’re not on the cheap side. Why not dig out a shoe box or save a delivery box and put a couple of items for your children (and yourselves if you fancy it) that you can look forward to on the night. These could be things like fresh jarmies, a film or book you all love, a delicious treat, a new game for the family to play. Doesn’t have to be expensive. Just needs to be personalised for your little ones.

4. Host a virtual Christmas Crafts

It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of getting the paper, scissors and glue out. Get your child to send out invitations (can be emails or messages to parents) to their friends with the time and date, dig out your pom poms, glue sticks and get crafting. Or even better, whip up a big batch of salt dough (1 cup of flour, half a cupful of table salt, half a cupful of water). This way, you can get 30 minutes of extra wrapping time and they get to see their friends!

5. Go to the movies and watch a Christmas film (at home)

No need to pre-book, queue to get into the car park, worry about your ice cream melting before the film starts. Just stick your jarmies on, grab your tub of Hagen Daaz and grab your remote. Although your child may not be so familiar with the concept of rifling through the Radio Times to see ‘what’s on’, this doesn’t mean you can’t all sit down to choose one film each that you’d like to watch. The best bit? You don’t even have to leave the house! It’s one of my favourite, free Christmas ideas!

6. Christmas scavenger hunt

If you’re lucky (or unlucky depending on which way you look at it) enough to have a naughty elf, you could say that they’ve got hold of certain items and hidden them around the house for your children to find. You could add a layer of real panic and say that he’s hidden the advent calendars, so your kids are invested! Alternatively, you could leave clues that take your children around the house and their reward at the end could be some yummy treats. I’m ready, are you?!

7. Homemade Rapidough

You will need a ball of dough divided into however many people are playing (if you have any playdough in the house, use that. If not, you can make salt dough which works just as good), a cookie cutter and a smart phone (for timer and random word generator). The idea of the game is that one person is given a word and has to use their playdough to model that word in any way they can and everyone else has to guess what it is. Whoever wins the round by guessing correctly gets to use the cookie cutter to take a piece of the other team’s playdough to add to their own blob of playdough. The winner is the team with the most playdough at the end.

8. Bake some Christmas goodies

No need to make it expensive or complicated! The internet is full of recipes that are budget friendly and perfect for even the least confident of bakers (like me).

9. Visit your local garden centre to see the Christmas displays

Another great activity in my list of free Christmas ideas, this always puts me in the festive mood. Garden centres always have amazing cafes too so grab a sausage roll for the journey whilst you’re there!

10. Write letters to friends and relatives and post them

This is a lovely way for you children to really think about what they’re asking for and also you could get a little insight into their inner most thoughts. Your children could decorate the letters and the envelopes to make them all the more festive.

However you’re spending Christmas this year, make it yours and don’t worry about anyone else.

The best gifts that could fill any home this Christmas are healthy and happy families all wrapped up in each other.

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