10 ways to warm up these school holidays



A bit of school holiday creativity goes a long way towards releasing kids' endless energy. Get their muscles and brains working with these fun activities, with one for every weekday of the holidays.

1. Throw a dance party

There's nothing like a dance-off to flush out the cobwebs and warm right up. Give them their pick of top 40 hits or provide a music education (Jackson 5, anyone?) and crank the volume. Download a strobe light app and close the curtains for full DJ cred.

2. Build an obstacle course

A couple of boxes, blankets and some strategically placed furniture can turn a standard living room into a challenging obstacle course, guaranteed to be accompanied with a soundtrack of squealing delight. If your kids are particularly rough-and-tumble, then take it to the backyard using outdoor furniture, boxes, a trampoline, wheelbarrows and pots. Pull out the stopwatch and do time trials to see who can get through the quickest.

3. Create a moonlight cinema

Take DVD watching to the next level by making an outdoor theatre at home. If you've got access to a projector, you can rig up a white sheet and watch the newly released Peter Rabbit on the big screen. Alternatively, drag the TV out onto the patio. BYO bean bags, blow-up beds and pillows and throw some popcorn in the microwave for an at-home movie experience under the stars.

4. Land at the library

We might live in a digital world, but the library remains one of the most wonderful sanctuaries for children. There are storytimes and activities, including basic coding and science talks, most days, plus quiet nooks for reading and puzzle solving. You can easily lose a good hour or two perusing the shelves and finding your kids (or your!) next favourite read.

5. Try kids yoga

The beauty of yoga is that it not only gets kids moving to expel pent-up energy, but it usually incorporates some meditation to wind them right down. Yoga also creates body awareness, develops concentration, promotes mindfulness and removes them from the temptation of electronic devices. Drop them off to do their downward dog, and with a bit of luck you'll pick them up feeling zen.

6. Do putt putt

From glow-in-the-dark courses to multi-level greens, the sky is the limit when it comes to amazingly entertaining mini golf courses in Australia. No matter their sporting prowess, everyone can get par at a mini golf. The only downside is that your kids won't stop begging to do it again.

7. Get your skate on

Whether you've got bladers, scooters or skaters in your midst, hitting up a skatepark will get any kid's core temperature up on a crisp winter's day. An indoor centre is your obvious choice if it's wet and windy, otherwise most councils have an outdoor ramp or two for those cool but dry winter days. Pack your parker if you don't plan on skating yourself, so you're not shivering on the sidelines.


8. Host a talent show

Challenge your kids to put on a performance in a few days' time and leave them to script the entertainment, whip up some costumes and create a spectacle. This could be a musical, play, radio show or even a magic show. An invite to the grandparents or neighbours ought to really set the challenge to create the greatest show on earth.

9. Decorate cup cakes

You don't have to be a Masterchef to run an amateur at-home cooking class. Dig out your recipe books or pull out the iPad and let the kids choose some cupcake decorations they'd like to try, then hit the shops for all of the ingredients. It's going to be messy and there might be some mistakes – or disasters – but your little ones will be learning a crucial life skill, while having fun.

10. Stage a fashion parade

Give your kids a rare opportunity to let loose in your wardrobe and stage a catwalk through the lounge room. You'll all be in fits as the high heels and workman boots get a run, along with sparkling accessories and bowties. Suggestion: Make sure hands and faces are thoroughly clean before they have their way with your finest threads, and give them advance warning that they are responsible for leaving your wardrobe in the condition that they found it.

This article has been produced in association with Universal Sony. 

Bring Peter Rabbit home on Blu-ray, DVD & Digital now

Mopsy (Elizabeth Debicki), Flopsy (Margot Robbie),  Benjamin, Bea (Rose Byrne), Peter Rabbit (James Corden) and Cottontail (Daisy Ridley) in Columbia Pictures' PETER RABBIT.

Mopsy (Elizabeth Debicki), Flopsy (Margot Robbie), Benjamin, Bea (Rose Byrne), Peter Rabbit (James Corden) and Cottontail (Daisy Ridley) in Columbia Pictures' PETER RABBIT. Photo: Courtesy of Sony Pictures