The holiday season can mean that you have to find an alternative to your usual childcare arrangements. Finding a solution that works for both you and your child can be challenging.
Take a look at some of things you might want to consider:
Finding holiday childcare
- Check opening time changes. Many nannies and child minders will be away for the festive period so it’s good to check holiday plans as soon as possible. Nurseries can have varied opening hours and be shut on certain days. Many nannies and nurseries will be filling up around this time of year so it’s a good idea to start planning and book as soon as possible.
- Family Information Services (FIS) or Children’s Information Services (CIS). Every local authority in England, Wales and Scotland has either a FIS or CIS which provides information and advice on a range of family related issues, including childcare.
- You may be able to seek support from family, friends and neighbours who also have children off school. Getting together for events or sharing the responsibility can help to give you a break too.
- Local Authorities. Most local authorities will hold information about holiday activities available in their area. Booklets of the activities on offer are often distributed via schools and libraries.
- Libraries. In addition to providing details of local holiday schemes, some libraries also run holiday story times and/or book reading schemes.
- Local newspapers. Papers will often run a separate supplement detailing holiday activities in the major school holidays.
Entertaining over the holidays
The unreliable weather over the winter season can mean a lot of time spent indoors. Below are some suggestions for some easy but fun ways to keep your children entertained:
- Make a den. Set aside a space in the house or garden and give your child some old blankets and pegs and let them get creative! Taking in snacks and books or games can add to the excitement.
- Have an indoor picnic. Don’t let the weather ruin the fun. Get the children involved with food and drink preparations, set up a blanket on the floor and enjoy an indoor picnic.
- Make a photo album. Go through old pictures and create an album of family memories.
- Play a game. Seek out old board games and get the whole family involved.