It's a little over a month until the beginning of the summer holidays. That means our grandkids will soon be free from school and looking for something to keep them occupied over the hottest months of the year. Whilst many may be content to while away the hours on the latest video games, it's important to get them out of the house. Spending time with their grandparents may be the perfect opportunity. To help give you the advantage, here are six activities to entertain the grandkids.
Cooking & Baking
If there's one thing guaranteed to capture your grandkids' attention, it's food. What makes cooking and baking such a rewarding activity is that there's something tasty to eat at the end of it. Something the grandkids might not notice, however, is that they are receiving certain benefits in the process.
Cooking with the grandkids teaches them valuable skills such as measuring, reading comprehension, and, of course, how to cook their own meals. It is also an activity that will strengthen their bond with you. When they're older, they will retain memories of days spent covered in flour in the kitchen and the delicious baked goods you produced together.
If you're worried about giving them too many sweet treats, there are still plenty of healthy recipes you can try. Approach your cooking and baking sessions in the right way and your fussy eaters won't even care that they're going to be eating fruit. This is also an activity that can be exciting every time you do it, as there's always something new to prepare.
Sometimes the grandkids can have more energy than you know what to do with. Chasing them around the garden is more likely to exhaust you rather than them. However, there are ways you can direct that energy without needing to lie down afterwards.
Gather some treats and hide them around the garden. Alternatively, your prizes could be redeemable vouchers that you've written out yourself. For example, one could be for a slightly later bedtime or an extra snack during the day. Then you can write some clever clues, give them to the grandkids, and let them look for the treasure.
If your garden isn't large, or if the weather isn't great, you could hide your prizes around the house instead. Just make sure to put anything breakable out of the way.
For a fun day out for all the family, why not visit a living museum. Whilst other museums can be great educational experiences, a living museum allows you and the grandkids to step into the past. Actors will show how things used to be done, including school, shops, and daily jobs like farming.
And your grandkids can get involved too. They could have hands-on experience with classic arts and crafts or get to wear the popular clothes of the time. A visit to a living museum will leave your grandkids with more memories than a simple walk around exhibits in glass cases.
Experiencing the past makes more of an impression than simply hearing about it. Your grandkids won't soon forget the cramped conditions of the mine at the Black Country Museum. Or perhaps a visit to the Yorkshire Museum of Farming will give them a new appreciation for the food on their plates.
Children tend to have remarkable imaginations. Why not encourage them to express themselves through the medium of storytelling? Writing stories comes with so many cognitive benefits, making it one of our favourite activities to entertain the grandkids. You can get involved, too, especially if it's a rainy day.
Use storytelling to explore the events of the day. Or to get ideas for other activities that could entertain the grandkids. If they write about knights and dragons, for example, maybe it's time to plan a day at a local castle. A story about wild animals could be a sign that it's time to head to the zoo.
Amongst the advantages of writing their own stories are:
- Encouraging creative thought processes
- Improving comprehension of information
- Broadening their use of language
- Supporting focus and self-discipline
Connect with Nature
It's no fun being cooped up inside all day, and the UK is home to some truly beautiful natural spaces. Summer is the perfect time to head out to a local woodland walk and enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of the British countryside. Lush trees tower overhead, birds sing in the branches, and you never know what else you might see.
If it's a sunny day, slather on the sun cream and stick on a hat. Wet days shouldn't stop you either. Wellies and raincoats exist for a reason. Nature has a lot to offer whatever the weather, and your grandkids will have a great time splashing through puddles.
Take a camera along and encourage your grandkids to explore - as long as they stay in sight! Take pictures to commemorate the day. Snap some photos of birds and then challenge your grandkids to identify them when you get home. This is another of our activities to entertain the grandkids that will help to leave them tired by bedtime.
On the hotter summer days, it's important to cool off. What better way to keep cool and have fun than to go swimming? You could visit your local indoor pool to truly escape the sun, or head down to your local lido (if you have one). And if you're close to the coast, the beach can provide plenty of swimming time as well as well as an ice cream on the promenade.
Whilst other families might have similar ideas, it's a great way to keep the grandkids busy. They might also make some new friends. Swimming is also great for keeping the grandkids healthy, as it builds up muscle and burns calories.
It is also an activity that can benefit you. Moving around in water takes weight off your joints. This means you can build up your own strength without straining yourself whilst taking the grandkids out for the day.
Personal Alarms from Lifeline24
Even when spending time with the grandkids, it's important to look after your own wellbeing. For older adults, falls can be a serious worry. One in three over-65s will have at least one fall a year. Therefore, it is important to have a system in place to protect yourself.
A Lifeline24 personal alarm allows you to call for help in the event of a fall or medical emergency. Our service provides you with a pendant alarm and base unit; when help is needed, simply press the button on your pendant. This will send an alert to our 24/7 Response Team, who will assess the situation by speaking to you through the base unit. Help will be arranged by contacting your emergency contacts and, if necessary, the emergency services.
You can also opt for our fall detector plan, which will send an automatic alert if it detects that you have had a fall.