Jan. 16, 2017

As cliché as it sounds, studies frequently find that families that play together, stay togetherand learn together, too!

Why? Firstly, they make more memories, are less stressed, and build more intimate relationships. Secondly, children involved in such a family tend to do better in school with strong parental support. Thirdly, this contributes to a deeper sense of belonging, strengthening familial bonds.

Since whole family engagement is so critical to a child’s development, building in more time for family fun is a no-brainer. Here’s a list of fun activities for the whole family that won’t break the bank, and are easy to fit into your busy schedule:

Picnic time

Find an old tablecloth, and start packing a delicious lunch to enjoy in your family’s favorite location! Find some local greenspace by going to your favorite park or scenic view. Make a rule that no family member may use their phones during the picnic unless absolutely necessary.

    • Take in the scenery and enjoy every bite.
    • Talk about favorite memories, or upcoming goals and plans.
    • Enjoy the time together as a family, and make the most of your togetherness! 

Give back

Teaching kids to help the community is an excellent way to build character and raise a caring and empathetic individual. Take the kids to the local animal shelter to volunteer a few hours, or check out your local city’s volunteer guide to see what programs exist in the area.

    • Allow little ones to help with city gardening, in museums, or in the library.
    • Take young children to visit the elderly in nursing homes to brighten someone’s day. Along the way, your family will build lifelong memories, enjoying the time you spent together helping others. 

Make the most of rainy days and cancelled plans

On those days when you just can’t get out of the house, there’s no shortage of printable games for kids online to play with your child. Look for games that the whole family can play, like mazes, word searches, puzzles, and more!

Instead of playing the same tired board game, printable games online offer variety so your family will never get bored. With free printables available online in every corner of the net, your family can make a dismal day delightful.  

Go stargazing 

This one requires nice weather and a clear night, but your little ones will love staying up late with you to gaze at the stars!

    • Lay down some beach towels and lay down in a comfortable spot in your yard in the summer.
    • Help your child to find constellations in the stars, planets, and the moon.
    • Count stars together, and if you have a telescope, don’t be afraid to lug it outside to get a closer look! 

Get cooking

Kids love helping in the kitchen! Find a recipe and invite the entire family to help. Plan to bake something out of the norm, and involve everyone in the process, giving each family member a job.

    • Make cupcakes and have everyone frost using their own design and creativity.
    • Tackle a difficult Pintrest project, and even if your family fails to make it perfect, laugh and enjoy the time spent making it.

Some of the best family moments are spent making and sharing food together, and baking together can be a great way to spend an afternoon with the family.

Hit the beach

If there is a beach nearby, hitting the beach can be a fun experience for the whole family. Sometimes the best preschool math games are the ones found in real life.

    • Help your little one to make shapes and numbers in the sand.
    • Build sand castles and sculpt creations from the sand.
    • If you don’t live near the beach, invest in a sandbox and spend some quality time in the backyard with the kids near the pool. 

When thinking of ways to spend some quality time, get creative! The above activities are a great start, but the sky is the limit when it comes to family fun. Depending on your family’s interests, you can plan the perfect activities to keep your family connected, learning, and growing together. So start planning some family fun, and your kids will one day thank you for the memories!