How to Decrease Your Child’s Screen Time During the Holidays 

When your kids are off school for the holidays, getting prepared with a few fun activities can prevent moans of boredom and hours spent in front of their screens. Who knows, they might discover a new hobby that they love!

Here are 5 educational activities to decrease your child’s screen time.

1. Create an outdoor project like a birdhouse

If you’re lucky enough to have a garden or outdoor space, make the most of it. Aside from getting fresh air and exercise, there’s plenty more to see in the garden that your children can get involved in. Why not assign them an outdoor project such as building a birdhouse? Buying a bird box or making their own will give them a sense of ownership and it’s a great way to learn about wildlife. RSPB have a great selection of birdwatching gear, including binoculars for children — so they can keep an eye out for the different types of birds who pay a visit! Furthermore, joining your child in birdwatching adventures with your own set of optics and scope creates precious opportunities for bonding and shared discovery. Together, you can marvel at the wonders of the natural world, exchanging whispered observations and delighting in each new feathered friend that graces your garden. Through these shared experiences, you not only nurture a love for wildlife in your child but also cultivate cherished memories that will endure for years to come.

2. Give arts and crafts a go

Arts and crafts are a fantastic way to bring out your child’s creative side and get them learning something new. Take a look at Pinterest for educational craft activities. There are plenty of easy-to-make crafts that make learning fun and provide special one-on-one time with your child. Letting their creativity run free will keep their mind occupied when they’re not playing on their games console or watching TV.

3. Explore your local area on a bike ride

Who doesn’t love a bike ride? Taking an hour or two of your day to “saddle up” will encourage your child to move, learn more about their local area, and learn some very important road safety. Walking and cycling charity Sustrans say that cycling helps children get their recommended 60 minutes of physical activity per day, and it’s something fun to do as a family too. As you pass different things along the ride, your children will ask questions, and before you know it they’ll be learning as you go!

4. Take a trip to the library

If you want to encourage your children to have a digital detox, then you need to get them engaged in something other than their screens and devices. Taking a trip to the library will get them interested in reading and spending less time gaming or sitting in front of the TV. Going to the library can seem like a novelty, including the whole process of choosing books, checking them out, and bringing them home to read. Books can spark their interest in a whole new subject or inspire an ongoing love for reading.

5. Plan a scavenger hunt

Inside or outside, a scavenger hunt is a surefire way of getting your children up and about. It’s a fun pastime with a little bonus exercise thrown in for good measure! Simply create a list of items for your little ones and their friends to find — such as ‘something shiny’, ‘something that makes a noise’ or ‘something that comes from a tree’. A game like this will get them thinking logically, using observation skills, and using teamwork. Create new lists each time and you’ll have endless scavenger hunts to play around the home, in the garden, or even in a local park or wooded area. 

Going into your holiday with the intention of cutting back on technology use can be a little daunting at first, but give one of these five educational activities a go this summer and you can have a lot of fun without the need for screens!

Annabelle Short

Annabelle Carter Short is an author, freelance writer and a seamstress of more than 7 years. When not working, she’s spending time with her family or putting pen to paper for her own personal pursuits.