How to keep the kids entertained

If you’re anything like us, keeping the kids entertained over the holidays (yes we are continuing a small amount of schoolwork but mostly it’s holiday time in our house), then we’ve found the following invaluable.

With the library closed, we’ve invested in a pile of new books for our kids. Waterstones are currently offering a selection of bestselling kids books for £5.  Some deliveries might be a little delayed but most are arriving on time.

Missing out on the piano lessons but can’t face (or just can’t) teach the kids yourself?  Then try Simply Piano, an App that cleverly listens to your playing and adjusts accordingly to the ability.   The chart topping tunes to learn will make it popular with the kids too.

We’ve started knitting with our children (who doesn’t want a knitted dress for her Elsa Frozen doll?!) If you are just starting, then check out the many videos online which can help.  We particularly like this one from Sheep and Stitch which will get you knitting a scarf.

Whilst we aren’t happy letting our children have free rein of Youtube, we are happy letting them explore TheKidsShouldSeeThis.  A curated selection of videos with everything from how to make a spaghetti bridge to the view from a Golden Eagle soaring over the Scottish Highlands.

Did your kids like the film How to Train a Dragon?  Then they will love the AR Dragon App that allows them to look after an augmented reality baby dragon.  And if you have an animal in the house, then the My Talking Pet App in which you take a photo of your pet, record your voice and then it plays your pet ‘talking’ has proved very popular.

The Science Museum have just released a series of booklets on fun science experiments for kids which are helpfully given an age guide.  Cornflour slime anyone?

If your kids are angling for some tv time, then how about something a little different like Julian Fellowes’ The Wind in the Willows, for younger kids the excerpts from Swan Lake from The English National Ballet are a great introduction and the Wellcome Collection and Victoria and Albert Museum for behind-the-scenes museum videos for older children. BBC Bitesize also has some great online videos for children, many of which tie in with the National Curriculum.  We even resorted to Just Dance 2020 for some ‘exercise’ in the form of learning dance moves to pop songs but our 6 year olds weren’t that interested.  One for the Tik Tok generation, we think.

Finally, Julia Donaldson has started doing readings of her books with guest illustrators (last week it was Axel Scheffler and today it is Lydia Monks).  You can find them every Thursday afternoon at 4pm here.  We also love Eddie Redmayne reading Zog here.




Keeping the kids entertained
— Francesca
9th April 2020

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