Spring holiday activities
How do you keep your kids active and occupied, especially when you're still busy and they're keen to sit on the computer all day?
Here are seven helpful ideas to get your child out and about over the next couple of weeks:
- Hit the beach - take advantage of the warmer weather and get fit. Surf Life Saving NSW are currently running weekend nipper registrations at most beaches – and they're always looking for adult volunteers too.
- Check out Go Play (okay, that involves a little internet time, but it's really worth it) for a school holiday calendar of affordable, family-friendly activities, which also happen to be educational.
- Get on your bike and explore your local cycleways together.
- Visit a national park - New South Wales has 875 national parks and reserves so there has to be one nearby that you haven't visited lately!
- Croquet anyone? Or perhaps dragon boating will appeal to your kids more. Discover more than 70 sports and clubs by visiting NSW Sport and Recreation's Gateway to Sport.
- Catch your dinner – Spring is a great time for fishing and even if you don't catch a thing, it's a really nice way to spend some time with your kids, by the water, creating memories. It's also the type of activity that child psychologists suggest for opening up conversations with teenagers. Being outside, engaged in an activity and no direct eye-contact, can create the type of opportunities teens need to start talking about their lives.
- Get creative – paint a picture, make clay models, or start a woodwork project together. Many local hardware stores run kids D.I.Y project workshops.
Healthy computer time
Balance is everything when it comes to kids and computers. There are a few basic rules to using technology that can help keep everyone happy and safe:
- Have the computer in an open area of the house where you can keep an eye on games and conversations.
- Set the timer. Agree on how much online time your child can have, then set a timer and make then stick to it.
- Schedule exercise breaks. (It's also a great way to get help with the household chores: "I'll give you an hour on the computer if you hang the clothes out, is a win-win deal for busy parents).
- Talk to your child about where they go online, what they do, and who they communicate with. Start now – it's harder to be involved as they get older, unless you make it a habit.
- Read 10 cybersafety tips every parent should know and discuss them with your kids.
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