Spring Break Activity Guide
With spring break rapidly approaching, we’ve compiled some of our favourite kid- and parent-approved ideas for keeping active, eating for healthy weight loss, resting up, and spending quality time together.
Kid-Friendly Cooking (For All Ages)
Kids who are comfortable in the kitchen are more likely to grow up to feel empowered about their food choices in the future. Whether you’re cooking with toddlers or teens, the following guidelines will help you come up with ideas for skill-building activities at every age group:
2-3 year olds: washing produce, adding prepped food to big bowls, stirring “ingredients” together (using an empty bowl and wooden spoon)
3-4 year olds: pouring, adding prepped sandwich or pizza toppings to a base, mashing ingredients
4-6 year olds: stirring ingredients for a baking project or homemade granola, learning how to crack and whisk an egg, learning basic knife safety skills with plastic utensils
6-8 year olds: assembling sandwiches and wraps, making a grocery list from a recipe, tossing a regular or fruit salad, composting basics
8-11 year olds: learning knife skills (chef’s knife, paring knife and serrated knife) as well as how to safely use the stove and microwave
Preteens and older: menu planning, preparing meat and seafood (go over the basics of internal temperature, resting time and cutting techniques), pairing different kinds of food together, learning about recipe improvisation using available ingredients
Give These Beginner-Friendly Recipes a Try:
Have a Creative Collage Session
Enlist the help of older children to go through old magazines, catalogues, photos, brochures, and scraps of coloured paper. Once the raw materials are assembled, all you need for a good collaging session are scissors, glue, and craft paper (or any other surface to collage on.) Poster paint, markers, puffy paint, and glitter pens are perfect for layering on top of the collage and younger children will get a kick out of googly eyes, pipe cleaners and stickers. Join in on the fun by creating an improvised collage of your own or try making an intentional mood board with your favourite inspiring images if you prefer a more structured activity.
Explore the Great Outdoors
From leisurely neighbourhood exploratory strolls to day-long hikes, there’s no better way to reap the benefits of physical exercise than through fun outdoor activities the whole family can enjoy. It doesn’t have to be an extraordinary outing to feel special, an activity as simple as taking a different walking route to the library or the grocery store is enough to shake up your regular routine. If you have older children or teenagers, asking them to help choose and plan longer expeditions is a great way to teach them about reading reviews of hiking trails, outdoor preparedness, and choosing appropriate gear based on weather and trail advisories.
Visit the Local Indoor Pool
Check out the free swim times at the closest indoor pool (or, if you’re already a regular at an indoor pool, try going to a less-familiar pool) and make it an outing for the whole family. No need to swim laps or do any formal swimming, take a cue from your kids and let yourself have unstructured playtime in the water. Many indoor pools now include special amenities as part of the admittance fee (think lazy rivers and hot tubs), giving you the perfect opportunity to relax and recharge after having fun with your family.
Tips for Maintaining a Regular Sleep Schedule
During the break, it’s all-too easy for both yourself and your child to move away from a normal sleep schedule. As you may have witnessed in the past, even a short disruption from a regular routine can cause issues once the break ends. Whenever possible, keep up with healthy bedtime hygiene practices such as:
- Avoiding screen time at least 1 hour before bedtime
- Taking a warm bath
- Practicing meditation or relaxing yoga
- Reading to your kids before they go to sleep or encouraging solo reading
- Cuddling and sharing about the day before turning the light out
- Making sure bedroom lighting is adequate (either totally dark or if your little one prefers, a night light)
- Aiming for a similar bedtime and wake up time every day, especially towards the end of the break