The holidays are here, the kids have arrived – so what next? Holiday club activities not only keep the kids entertained, but it can be really rewarding to work alongside them to see what their imagination is able to weave and produce.
First off, a little about Kids Club HQ:
We are a platform that helps you to run your holiday club smoothly and professionally. We can provide you with everything from support with admin, payments and invoicing to helping to manage important information about the kids in your club. Learn more here.
Why are activities for kids important?
Ah, the wonderful world of kids’ activities! Beyond just being great entertainment for a holiday club, there is much for kids to gain from activities that aid their development, wellbeing and confidence.
In this blog, we’ll look at a range of kids’ activities to do at your club, which includes:
- Arts and Crafts
Taking a read of this part first can help you to direct and encourage the kids in your holiday club, to ensure that they get the most out of the best holiday club activities experience, and this is how we help you to get the most out of your time, to help you focus on running a great club.
It’s a brilliant way for kids to socialize
When kids are all participating in the same activity together, it can help them to connect with one another. It can help kids who are not sure how to first start talking to their peers, to find common ground to speak about, especially if they are new to the holiday club.
It helps them learn how to direct themselves
The range of activities within the article will often include a time where the child is able to make decisions for themselves and direct their own actions.
For example, within arts and crafts activities, try to encourage the children to make their own decisions around which colours to pick, which people from their lives will feature in their art, or what the vision of their world will look like.
There are also plenty of decisions to be made by the children for themselves when playing games, and their own chosen strategy can help them to succeed in the game.
As the kids learn how to direct themselves, and then receive praise after making a great decision, it will build their confidence in critical areas for both now and later in life.
It’s a fantastic outlet for creativity
Kids are the source of much-unbridled imagination, with a need for an outlet. Through the holiday activities listed in this article, they are given a variety of ways to explore sound, strategy, colour, texture and materials.
It can also help them to find out what they like and what makes them happy. Developing hobbies is great for a child’s wellbeing, especially when they are taking part in them in a supportive, encouraging environment.
It allows them to connect with themselves
A lot of children may find that they have a hard time expressing themselves verbally, particularly if they are naturally more of an introvert.
Expressing their inner feelings and thoughts through holiday activities can provide a great outlet for them, and it is something that many children will carry forward with them long after the holiday club ends.
Arts and Crafts Ideas for Holiday Clubs
1. Popsicle (lollypop) stick crafts
This craft is good for all ages with lots of room for variation and experimentation.
- Pipe cleaners
- Googly eyes
- Paint and brush
- Felt tip pens
- Any other embellishment of your choice, such as glitter or mini pom-poms.
Kids are able to paint the popsicle stick any colour that they want (or to leave it as it is) and then draw on details such as scales, spots, hearts or anything else before finishing by gluing on googly eyes for a fun finish.
Pipe cleaners can be used to add arms and legs to your stick or to embellish the original design.
2. Bubble wrap painting
Ah, bubble wrap – you either loved it or hated it as a kid, but we find most kids can’t get enough of using it in their holiday club. For a textural, sensory art experience, grab:
- Bubble wrap
- A paintbrush
- Three paint colours
Encourage the child to draw a central figure with two of the paint colours. They can then add the third colour into their palette and paint the bubble wrap, leaving enough space in the middle for the central figure to not get painted on.
Use the bubble wrap to stencil on the background and voila – all done!
3. Hanging decoration
This is a great idea that can be adapted to any season, whether you’re painting Easter eggs, Christmas baubles or Halloween pumpkins.
- Card or thick paper in the desired colour
- Paints, colouring pencils or felt tips
- Thin, decorative string or ribbon
- Glitter (optional)
The key to this craft is to create two identical shapes of your choice, i.e. for a bauble, cut out two identical circles: do this by folding the card in two and cutting the circle out in the middle of the card, creating two identical circles. For Easter, this can be done in an egg shape, or for Halloween in a pumpkin shape.
Once you have the two identical shapes, you can now decorate both sides of each of the shapes with glitter, patterns and designs. Next, cut a top slot in one, and a bottom slot in the other (stretching about halfway across the shape).
You then need to create a small hole in one, at the top of the shape (this can be done using a hole punch). Thread through the ribbon and secure the loop for hanging. Slot the two shapes together – all done!
Science Experiments for Holiday Clubs
4. Baking soda volcano
Possibly one of the most satisfying holiday club activity ideas is helping the kids to create their very own volcano! This activity is great as it combines creativity with science, with a truly spectacular end that they will definitely go home raving about!
5. Chromatography Flowers
Science experiments are often a super fun activity for children in a holiday club and this one is no exception. This is a beautiful, mind-bending science experiment with an artsy twist whereby an ink is separated into different colours. Try the experiment by following this tutorial.
6. Lava Lamp
Whilst we remember lava lamps, most of the children in your summer holiday club probably don’t, and what a way to introduce them than by helping them make their own. They teach the children about the densities of different substances, and how they do (and don’t) mix. Take a look at this idea of how to make one as part of your holiday club activities.
Game Ideas for Holiday Clubs
7. Keep the balloon up
This may sound like a very simple game idea for a holiday club, but it is one that can be incredibly fun for kids and is also low cost. Blow up enough balloons for there to be one to two per child, and ensure the space that the kids play the game in is free from wind but large enough that they won’t charge into one another.
You can add an incentive or a prize for the child who keeps their balloon up the longest!
8. Touch and feel boxes
Some of the most exciting things for kids are things that they can’t see. Have the kids make a box with a top hole large enough for a child’s arm to reach through (shoe boxes work well, and you could get them to decorate the box). Have each of them reach through and try to identify the object that you have placed inside it. Experiment with items of different textures and densities.
They can play this game in groups competitively or it can be a more laidback activity – there is lots of room for diversity.
9. Hot potato
A classic game idea for holiday clubs is hot potato – be prepared for lots of giggles! The idea is to hold the ball or beanbag for as little time as possible, and for the kids to keep it moving.
Musical hot potato is a great variation. When you stop the music, whichever child is holding the ball is out. Keep going until you have one child who has conquered the hot potato.
Music Ideas for Holiday Clubs
10. Musical chairs
Ah, the perennial classic, the one game that almost no kid does not like to play. Set chairs in a circle, play music as kids dance along the circle, until the music stops, after which the kids must find a chair to sit on. The kid that does not get a seat gets eliminated.
Musical chairs is a game that has a very broad appeal, and almost every adult today probably has a memory of playing that game. But this classic holiday club game is not just fun, it’s one that also teaches kids the value of reacting fast, playing by the rules, being patient, and dealing with disappointment when they’re out of the game. And it’s just pretty fun, even for adults.
11. Musical storytelling
Print out the lyrics to popular storytelling songs and nursery rhymes for the kids to sing along to. Songs such as ten green bottles work really well. This one is a great bonding activity and one that all kids will enjoy.
12. Make music shakers
This children’s holiday club activity can be followed up by playing music for the kids to shake their shaker along to – try to get them shake it in rhythm with the music. Try to go for a mid-tempo track, but you can try higher-tempo songs later on to make the activity even more fun for them.
- 2 paper cups
- Chickpeas or rice
- Sticky tape
- Glitter and stickers
Start by making two small holes in the bottom of the cup for the ribbon to be threaded through – younger kids may need assistance. Thread through the ribbon and tie it in a bow.
Add chickpeas or rice into one of the cups. Use sticky tape to hold together the two cups. Decorate with stickers and/or glitter. Get ready to shake!