The weekend is looming and you’re making plans but everything seems so expensive. Here are 5 Fun & Budget-friendly Things to Do With Kids this Weekend:
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Bonding as a family may seem harder nowadays in our technology-driven society. It may be easier for everyone to turn to their screens, but it’s worth making the effort to spend time together as a family through shared experiences both indoors and out, whether on a biking expedition to explore the wonders of nature or gathering together by the fireplace for an evening of reminiscing and storytelling.
You don’t have to worry about straining your budget with expensive activities, here are five fun ideas to enjoy with those you hold near and dear to your heart that won’t cost the earth.
#1. Go for A Bike Ride
It seems like we spent our childhood on our bikes, and cycling is a great family activity.
Research new places to take the kids that are car-safe and off the road. If you don’t have bikes, then bike rental need not be exorbitant.
For families with older kids, how about trying a mountain biking trip for something a bit different? There are some great trails in outdoor parks and forests ready for discovery.
You might enjoy reading 9 Sure Fire Tips for Bike Safety For Kids
It’s true that food eaten outdoors tastes different, and in my experience, kids of all ages love the novelty of a picnic.
Picnicking also offers messy eaters a chance to worry less about the mess they make and to focus more on the experience and, bonus, it saves parents some time in the cleanup department!
For extra fun, take some time out of the day before the picnic to cook with your children and introduce them to preparing tasty foods to be enjoyed while out and about.
You might enjoy reading Great Picnic Ideas and Your Perfect Picnic Checklist
#3. Start A Family Book Club
Encouraging children to read in a digital age takes a bit of prodding, but starting a book club exclusive to your family can provide a fun incentive to take part in bettering oneself through casual reading. You can borrow a selection of books from your local library to keep book costs low.
Stories that appeal to all ages are a good place to start, so keep the average age of your book club members in mind as you pick out what to read together. Some families may prefer to read alone and come together at a casual meeting to eat snacks and discuss what they read, while others might read shorter stories together.
For extra fun, why not choose stories that have been adapted into television series or films and enjoy them together after you’ve read the corresponding books to see how those stories stack up. It may not get everyone away from screens, but it does give you a chance to chat with your kids about how adapting stories from one medium to another can require changes both big and small while helping them develop critical thinking skills.
Here are some ideas for books you might read together:
- the Harry Potter book series by J.K. Rowling
- Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White
- The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
- The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
- The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
- A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
- Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
- The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and the other Chronicles of Narnia books by C.S. Lewis
- Anything by Roald Dahl, e.g. The BFG, Matilda, Charlie & The Chocolate Factory
- Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo
- Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
You might also enjoy reading Tips for Setting Up a Book Group
#4. Break Out the Board Games
Board games aren’t just a fun reason to round up the family and snack away while rolling dice or tossing cards around: several life skills develop through friendly competition and logic-based games, which means boosted brain power disguised as plain fun.
Better yet, starting a weekly or monthly family game night can act as part of a routine that is both memorable and also demonstrates that not all routines have to revolve around doing chores or celebrating specific events. Of course you may have to curb your own competitive nature when playing the kids!
You might also enjoy reading 20 of the Best Board Games for Families
#5. Volunteer in Your Community
While not a traditional weekend activity for some families, volunteering together to better your local community builds strong family bonds that aren’t easily broken. It sets a good example for your kids and provides a valuable service for those in need.
Contact your local volunteer association and describe your interests, where you are located and the ages of your children.
Here are some ideas:
- help with local Tidy Towns or clean ups of parks and beaches;
- look into volunteering at an animal shelter;
- offer to help an elderly neighbour;
- donate food to a food pantry or soup kitchen.
I hope this has shown that spending time together as a family need not be too costly and that these ideas have inspired you for your next weekend plans.
Over to you now. If you do anything low cost but fun at weekends with your child that you’d like to share, tell us in the comments below.