I would like to share some tried and tested ideas from our own home on how you can keep your children entertained and create some beautiful memories together as a family this half-term. We try to be intentional about living out our faith for our girls to see so that we can teach them to know and love the Lord, so you can use these activities to help to build up your children’s faith.

Age 12 months – 6 years: Craft foam paper + Contact Paper = Endless fun and teaching possibilities

Cut out different shapes from your foam sheet to go with your story: animals (you can use play dough or cookie cutters to outline the shapes, then cut them out and add some details using a Sharpie), trees, flowers, and so on. You can involve your child in the getting ready process too.

Stick the contact paper on a window and create different stories using the shapes. The contact paper is clear and your story will look really pretty with the sun coming through!

You can use this idea in practising their letters or numbers too, just be creative with your foam paper and think outside the box! And speaking of boxes, the next idea is for older kids.

Age 6 – 12 years (or older!): Cardboard city/fortress

Design a cardboard box city or fortress. All you need are some different sized boxes (cereal boxes, juice boxes, milk jugs), a pair of scissors, a Sharpie and some Sellotape. You can add a string of fairy lights inside your boxes once you are done to give the illusion of a lit fortress/city. This activity can last days, you could keep adding details to it and different materials you have around your house to make your creation as detailed or as big as you want it to be. Recycle and use what you already have.

Here are a few other ideas to get you started:

  • Have a game night. Get the board games out and put away all electronics for a night.
  • Recreate a story from the Bible. Dress up and have fun while teaching them about what really matters.
  • Go on a treasure hunt in your local park or garden. Make a list of treasures, set the timer and have a race with all the family.
  • Cook or bake together (make up weird recipes!)
  • Visit your local museum or library.
  • Make a fort in your garden or your living room.

Don’t be afraid of the mess, think about what you are gaining instead: Beautiful memories with your children to cherish years to come. Playing with your children, spending time with them and being intentional about it strengthens your relationship with them.

Deuteronomy 6:1-9
These are the commands, decrees and laws the LORD your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the LORD your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life. Hear, O Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the LORD, the God of your fathers, promised you.

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

Erika is an active member of Harvest City Church and is the creative force behind many of our parties and event decoration. For more crafty inspiration please visit her blog at erika-shineon.com.