4 Fresh Ways to Keep the Kids Busy This Spring

Girl in box plane

Recipes for kids, quick lunch ideas, tasks and games for the whole family to enjoy

With the higher cost of travel and only a recent change in travel restrictions, you may have decided that staying home this year is the best choice for the family.

However, when you have young children, you might wonder how you will successfully fill all those days . . . while keeping the kids — and yourself — from getting bored or cranky while potentially still working!

Not only that, Spring can be a tricky time of year, depending on where you live. Will you be building snowmen or jumping puddles? Will the kids be wearing parkas or raincoats? Should you plan hikes in the park or trips to the museum?

Here are four ideas that are fun for kids, easy to recreate, and adaptable for any day of the week or temperature.

1. Spring Break Olympics

Kids will love creating and competing in their very own Olympics. You can get the whole family involved and invite your child’s classmates, cousins or neighbours. Make it a multi-day affair, just like the real Olympics!

You could block off every morning (or afternoon) for a week, each day with a different competition, some indoors, some outside, and some that could go either way depending on the weather.

Let the kids come up with some of their own ideas for sports to play-here are some suggestions to get their creative juices flowing:

  • Short and longer running races
  • Long jump (with a tape measure to record the distances)
  • Ball throwing
  • Gymnastics (somersaults and cartwheels and pirouettes—or rhythmic gymnastics with a ball, ribbon, or hula hoop)
  • Swimming at the local community centre
  • Skating at the local arena Let the kids get creative.

Each child could represent a different country or dress in a different colour. Have an opening ceremony with lots of waving to the crowd and perhaps an Olympic torch made out of a paper towel cylinder and red/orange construction or tissue paper.

Have the kids tape streamers across doorways or between trees to create finish lines to run through, or make their own gold, silver and bronze medals with cardboard, string, foil or coloured paper.

They could even play their favourite song for the medal ceremonies. Each Olympic morning could end with an awards ceremony, followed by a quick and easy lunch that you can champion.

Try some of these Wonder® bread inspired, kid-friendly sandwiches that you can whip up in time to catch the next big event!

Apricot, Cheddar and Chicken Sandwich

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Apricot, Cheddar and Chicken Sandwich

 

Check out full recipe here

Fish Sticks, Mayo, Mustard and Lettuce Soldiers

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Fish Sticks, Mayo, Mustard and Lettuce Wonder Win Sandwich

 

Check out full recipe here

Pizza-wich

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Pizza-Wich

 

Check out full recipe here

Looking for more easy lunch ideas for your picky eaters?

Check out these Wonder Wins using kid-favourite Wonder® White Bread, or 100% Whole Wheat Bread.

Wonder bread Cheeseburger Taco

2. Around the World in 7 Days Go for global theme days!

Get everyone involved in celebrating a different country for every day of the holiday week. On a rotating basis, one family member can choose a country and be in charge of gathering some facts, so everyone can learn about customs and cuisine.

For example, if Mexico is chosen, the family might learn how to say “hello,” “please” and “thank you” in Spanish. The family artist could draw and colour the Mexican flag for décor.

Someone else could search a video to learn and teach the traditional Mexican hat dance. What’s on the menu? Try these family-friendly recipe ideas.

Breakfast Burritos

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Breakfast Burrito

 

Find full recipe here

Mexican Chicken Burgers

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Mexican Chicken Burger

 

Find full recipe here

Kid and Freezer Friendly Enchiladas

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Kid and Freezer Friendly Enchiladas

 

Find full recipe here.

Italian day?!

Play the country’s favourite sport of football (soccer), find out why the country is called “the boot” and learn about the Leaning Tower of Pisa and gondolas in Venice.

Dress up your table with a bowl of grapes, oranges and lemons like you are under the hot Tuscan sun. Or, pretend you are in Rome and use a red-and-white tablecloth and eat by candlelight.

Have kids create these English Muffin Pizzas or try Word Game Pepperoni Pizza Melts, Turkey & Spinach Panini Snackers or this Kid Friendly Bruschetta recipe. What’s for dessert? Gelato ice cream, of course!

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Kid Friendly Bruschetta

 

3. “Project Sparkle and Shine”

Shhhh. This is just a fun way of saying spring cleaning! But since the season is changing, kids are not at school (and hopefully you are off work), this is the perfect time to sort through clothes, toys and other belongings that might have gathered over the winter and during lockdowns.

When it comes to decluttering and organizing, there’s no reason to do it alone! Gather around the kitchen table and have a family meeting over breakfast or lunch!

Serve up easy recipes with Brekkie Cones or French Toast Sticks, or check out some Wonder® Wins for fast and economical sandwich ideas. Ask for everyone’s input and buy-in on “Project Sparkle and Shine”, so they feel included.

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Brekkie Cones

 

Ask which chores kids prefer – they might even want to show off how helpful and grownup they are. Kids will get involved in sorting and cleaning especially if they feel part of a team and there is a reward at the end of the day (or the week).

Assign some tasks (maybe each child will go through their toys, or you all tackle the basement together) and get pumped. If kids need some encouragement, promise and deliver their favourite meal at the end of the cleaning blitz. Or, reward them with a shopping trip at the end of the week.

Perhaps if they part with five toys they have outgrown, they can buy one new toy. Get the music going, keep it fun and let them know how much you appreciate their help. This is also a good opportunity to talk to kids about the value of recycling and donating used items to help others and the environment.

For more on getting kids involved in cleaning, read: 5 Quick Kid-Friendly Recipes for De-Cluttering This Spring

4. Put on a Show

There is a role for every kind of child if you decide to stage a play or a variety show. The project could span a week with the culmination of a big show at the end!

This is a project that could use some extra hands, so perhaps neighbourhood pals would like to get involved and show off their talents, too. For a play, first help children choose a story that they might want to act out.

It could be, for example, The Cat in the Hat, Winnie the Pooh, or maybe a scene from Frozen. Children can fill the roles of actors or of a narrator if one person reads the story while others act it out. If they choose a variety show, kids can select the songs they want to sing and dance to, or decide on the skill they want to show off.

Handstands, juggling, reading, twirling a baton – all talents welcome! Whether it’s a play or variety show, in addition to the all-important rehearsals, there are other tasks to keep little ones busy, such as crafting props and gathering wardrobe items.

The latter could involve a trip to the thrift or dollar store or just a few hours rummaging around your closets. Kids may also want to create tickets and programs for the big day (with an assigned ticket-taker) and use dividers or sheets to create a backstage or theatrical curtain. “Selling” drinks or snacks on the big night might also be fun for kids.

They could serve up little bowls of popcorn, or must try Wonder® inspired recipes like Finger Sandwiches, or Nutella and Raspberry Mini Donuts.

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Nutella and Raspberry Wonder Donuts

 

With summer just around the corner, get yourself ready with these 7 Tips for Keeping Kids Busy this Summer Break.

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Tips for Summer break
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