55 Activities for After School Fun

While at school, kids tend to spend their day sitting down, using devices and following a schedule, so when they get home it is important for them to have time to be creative, get moving and do something they enjoy. Here are 55 ideas to get you started and with a bit of creativity, these 55 ideas can easily turn into 365!

  1. Build a treehouse.
  2. Choose an old item around the house that's no longer useful, paint it and turn it into a decorative piece (like an old guitar or other instrument that doesn't work, an old broken clock, an old water jug, etc.).
  3. Use painter's tape to create "roads" on the floor of the living room, then grab blocks to build houses and make a whole town!
  4. Create homemade ice cream.
  5. Creating a reading challenge -- see if your child can read a certain number of books within a specific time frame and award prizes for milestones.
  6. Do kid-friendly yoga together – on your Springfree.
  7. Draw a chalk mural on the driveway or your Springfree. Take a photo of every new one, so you can keep track of the masterpieces.Chalk Drawing on Springfree Trampoline
  8. Draw a map and create your own treasure hunt, either in the house or outside.
  9. Finger paint - fun at any age!
  10. Get a blank picture frame (or one you've repainted) and glue pieces of fun all over it - buttons, miniature toys, pebbles, bottle caps, anything! Then let your child pick a nice photo to put in it.
  11. Go on a bike ride - follow a new path every time.
  12. Try rock climbing together, which helps develop endurance, balance and flexibility.
  13. Have a scavenger hunt that incorporates subjects your child is learning about in school.
  14. Hike and explore nearby trails.
  15. Illustrate a story.
  16. Join an after-school reading group at the library.
  17. Learn basic words in another language or learn sign language.
  18. Listen to a song and choreograph a dance to go with it.
  19. Create a fun countdown calendar with coloured countdowns to holidays and other exciting events (the next family holiday, an upcoming birthday party, etc.).
    DIY Calendar
  20. Make a list of your child's accomplishments in the past year, and brainstorm new goals for the upcoming one.
  21. Build a time capsule. Choose special things from this year, month or even just today and put them away in a shoebox to open at a future date. Include a note in the box explaining why you chose each item.
  22. Turn baby food jars into snow globes.
  23. Write quizzes for each other to take. You could ask questions to see how well you know each other (ex: what's my favourite colour?), or fun trivia about geography, history, science, etc.
  24. Offer local services to neighbours and friends, including car washing and lawn mowing. Encourage your kids to provide these services for free, as it's a way to give back to the community.
  25. On the way home from school, ask your child to tell you the two best parts and two least favourite parts of their day. When you get to the negatives, try to help your child find a silver lining or a bright side to the bad parts of their day.
  26. Order a rocks and mineral set, which is great for kids who like hands-on learning. You may discover that you have a budding geologist at home.
  27. Pick a song your child knows well and re-write all of the lyrics together to make it funny.
  28. Select different cultures from around the world to learn about - maybe focus on one each week, and try foods from that culture, learn about their holidays, etc.
  29. Organise a Zoom catch up with grandparents
    Zoom Grandparents
  30. Perform random acts of kindness. Leave it up to your kids to decide what this means to them: maybe it's dropping off a home-baked treat at an elderly neighbour's house or leaving an uplifting note or picture on a stranger's car or doorstep. The options are endless.
  31. Pick a "food of the week" every Sunday. During the rest of the week, incorporate that food into at least one meal every day. Be sure it's a healthy option. Use this as an opportunity to expand your child's palette and find new recipes for the family.
  32. Write an alternate ending to a movie or story of your choice.
  33. Volunteer. Did you know there is a National Volunteer Week? Good place to start.
  34. Choose a random item in the house and challenge each other to create a funny TV-style infomercial to convince you to buy it. Pretend this object is new on the market, and no one has heard of it before! It's fun to try to "sell" a sticky note, a pair of headphones or a toaster.
  35. Play a trivia game.
  36. Deal out the cards - gin rummy never goes out of style and will help your child learn numbers.
  37. Play charades.
  38. Get the dress ups out and make up a story to go with your costumes.
  39. Play hide-n-seek. An oldie, but goodie.
  40. Practice amateur photography. Kick it old school and equip your budding photographer with a disposable camera and an "assignment" for the afternoon. The excitement continues when you get the roll developed and see what they came up with. (Bonus: This can parlay into another afternoon activity: a photo collage-making activity.)
  41. Print photos, get coloured paper, glitter, markers, glue and start a scrapbook -- or even just make one scrapbook page.
  42. Research yummy and healthy after-school snacks that both you and your child like - then schedule when you're going to make them.
    Snacks
  43. Set up an obstacle course in your backyard or living room.
  44. Sort through old clothes and toys and donate them, so you can make room for new ones.
  45. Stroll through nature. In autumn, collect leaves. In the spring, forage for special flowers to make a spring bouquet.
  46. Watch a YouTube video on how to make sushi - then create the rolls for dinner.
  47. Tour the neighbourhood and research local historic spots.
  48. Take out the baby photos, share with your kids and tell them stories about when they were born.
  49. Show your baby photos to your kids so they can see what you were like when you were young.
  50. Photograph things in the park and create a collage. Do a new one every month, so you can keep track of how the seasons change.
  51. Take something apart, like an old appliance or electronic device (clock, remote control, etc.), and figure out how it works. Bonus: try to put it back together afterwards!
  52. Take walks every Monday to make plans for the week ahead.
  53. Walk along the beach collecting interesting shells (where allowed) along the way.
  54. Write a letter to a relative.
  55. Create Rainbow Soap for sensory play
    Rainbow Foam

BONUS: Use your Springfree in these 50 different ways!

 

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