The information provided in this article was accurate at the time of publishing and should be read in the context of the date it was published.
So the summer of 2012 is proving to be one of the wettest on record, but here at Scottish Friendly in Glasgow we are used to investing for a rainy day. However, when it comes to school holidays, and the downpour doesn’t stop, it is handy to have a few options up your sleeve to make a rainy day a memorable one.
We decided to help parents by providing ten ideas for a rainy day for kids which don’t eat into your savings and investments.
- Create a fort – Forts can be made out of anything around the house and can be so simple to create. The great thing about forts is that they cost almost nothing, you can use an old cardboard box and they can provide adventures and creative play for adults and kids alike. Once the fort is built; it can double as a cinema, a book club or even a home for teddy bears.
- Revel in the rain – Don’t fight it, enjoy it. Wrap up well in waterproofs and go for a brisk walk. Introduce the children to the appeal of splashing through puddles en route to the nearest family-friendly pub for chips and ice cream. Or step outside and stage a water-fight, with the aim of getting as wet as humanly possible.
- Museum peace – The word museum can all too easily sound like a tolling knell of boredom, but not anymore. Today’s museums are brilliant places to go with children. For example, there are an irresistible number of things for kids to do in the UK. Just visit www.museums.co.uk
- Make a Movie – Most households have camcorders. Keep it charged up and get ready to roll up your sleeves and release the inner Spielberg! Let your kids create a story to be made into a movie. Have them collect props, costumes and whatever else they need. Do a few dress rehearsals before the “taping”. This rainy day activity will turn into a cherished memory IN years to come.
- Read stories – Children get so much out of good story telling, whether it is a Julia Donaldson tale or a Cressida Cowell, young minds get far more out of a good story session than a film. Arm yourself with a range of voices and away you go. If you need more information on the right type of books for a particular age range, visit the Scottish Book Trust, they have a mountain of knowledge that will see your family entertained for hours. It has also been proven that children who are regularly read to perform better in the classroom and it can be great for family bonding. www.scottishbooktrust.com/
- Stay at home Olympics – the games are underway as are school holidays. It will inspire a generation of young people into sport. But what if you are waiting for Andy Murray to take to the court or Usain Bolt to get set for a sprint? Simply create your own Olympics in the comfort of your own home. Turn speed Scrabble into a competition where you can test your quick thinking and problem solving abilities together. Perhaps tiddly winks is more your thing? A Lego build competition will have children over the moon. Create a scorecard and prizes for every participant.
- Play at dressing up – Often the things people enjoy most in life are the most simple. Dressing up isn’t complicated, but it can make a rainy day bright with colour. If you have a little fashion wannabe, turn the living room into a mock catwalk and play some fun music to get the full effect. You can also encourage children to make their own outfits! www.bbc.co.uk/cbbc/thingstodo
- Paint and draw on request – This is so easy to do, but often parents get put off by the mess it can involve. We suggest laying down old newspapers on the floor and table and accepting that kids are messy when they paint. Get involved too by asking your children what they would like you to paint, and once everything has dried, pin the pictures up on the fridge, but if they are really good, mount them on the mantel piece and enjoy your very own family masterpiece for years to come.
- Bake a cake – Baking with kids is a great way to bond and have some quality time together. Kids are naturally inventive, drawn to sugar, and will soon want to be trying something a bit more challenging, so let the kids get on with the fun part – like decorating, trying new toppings, and having a great time!
- Go swimming – Sometimes, if it has been raining for ages, the best option might be to get truly wet. Swimming is a great form of exercise and is cheap to do. For something different – take your kids to an outdoor pool. You can find out more about these from your local council website, but here is a link to the ten best in Britain: www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/3089265/Britains-top-10-lidos.html
We hope you and your family have a great time trying these activities out if the rain persists. We certainly did!
Scottish Friendly’s 10 Things to Do For Kids on a Rainy Day!