Parents are constantly looking for fun new activities they can do with their children. However, it can be hard to find the time to do these family activities during the week. According to one study done by Visit Anaheim, American families are only enjoying 37 minutes of quality time together during the week. That’s less than seven and a half minutes per weekday.
That’s why weekends are crucial for family time. Children aren’t in school, and parents typically don’t have to work. There are less distractions on the weekend, which means you can spend more time together as a family. You want to make this time count, so it’s important to do the right kinds of activities together on the weekends.
Finding these activities can be tough, though. Where do you even start looking? There are a number of factors that determine what activities you should do, including time, money, and resources. If you’re looking for some fun family bonding ideas, check out these 14 fun activities.
Take Your Family To The Arcade
When was the last time your family participated in some fun family-friendly competitiveness? A fun way to bond with your kids is to take them to an arcade. There are a lot of games and activities they can do at an arcade, so you don’t have to worry about them getting bored. If you go to a retro arcade, you could even show them the arcade games you played growing up. They could learn more about their parents and have fun in the process.
If you really want to make things interesting, split the family into teams and make up a competition. Whoever gets the most tickets at the end of the day gets to choose what’s for dinner, or where to go for ice cream afterward. Having a little competition will help your family bond and create a fun-filled memory.
Teach Your Kids How To Bake
Teaching your kids how to bake is fun, and it gives you an opportunity to teach your kids a new skill.
Set aside some time and bake something fun with your children. You could create holiday-themed cupcakes, a colorful cake, or some delicious cookies you can decorate. Your kids will have so much fun that they may forget that they’re learning something new in the process. If you’re not a baker, you can also teach your kids how to cook. Have them help you prepare a special dish one night. They’ll learn how to cook, and they’ll also learn more about the foods they’re eating.
Camp In The Backyard
Who says you need to invest in kids summer camp for your kids to have a great camping experience? If the weather is nice, plan a family camp out in your own backyard.
You can put as much into this camp out as you’d like. You can set up tents, start a bonfire, make smores, and tell campfire stories. You could also invite your friends and their families to join in on the fun.
If the weather isn’t right for outdoor camping, set up a camping space in your home. You could have everyone camp out in the living room. You can make smores on the stove and still gather around to tell campfire stories (you just won’t be around an actual campfire).
Have A Movie Night
Lights, camera, action! If your family can’t get enough of movies, plan a movie night they’ll never forget. You could invest in a projector and set up an outdoor movie night.
You don’t need to spend a ton of money to host a good movie night. Many people use sheets or blackout cloth for a screen. You can set up lawn chairs or blankets around the screen for seating. For snacks, you can go with the movie classics: popcorn and candy.
If you want your children to learn something new during movie night, have them help set up the projector and sound system. This will give them some basic insight into audio visual technology and how actual movie theaters function.
Host A Lawn Games Tournament
If you want to do something extra fun with your family, plan a lawn games tournament. This tournament could be just for your family, or you could get neighboring families involved too. If you get more families involved, your kids could meet new people. There may be a neighborhood kid who goes to a private elementary school that your kids don’t see regularly. Inviting their family to this fun tournament could be a great way to get to know them better.
There are numerous lawn games you can play during this tournament. These games include Kan Jam, cornhole, badminton, ring toss, etc. Planning this tournament with your kids is a great way to get them involved, bond with them, and teach them organization skills.
Take The Kids To A Trampoline Park
Do your children have a lot of energy? If so, taking them to a trampoline park is a great way for them to burn that energy off.
Trampoline parks are exactly what they sound like. Children can run around the park and jump on as many trampolines as they want. This is a fun activity that gets your children up and moving. Plus, your kids can socialize with other kids at the trampoline park.
Go To The Park
Today’s youth spend less time participating in physical activity than ever. Children now spend more than 7.5 hours a day in front of a screen, and nearly one-third of high school students play video or computer games for three or more hours on an average school day. A great way to get your kids out of the house and off of their screens is to take them to the park.
There are a number of activities you can do as a family in the park. You could plan a picnic, bring lawn games, or even do a wellness activity like yoga together. You could also get a group of families together and plan a neighborhood park picnic. This would get your kids out of the house and provide a chance for them to make new friends.
Do Arts & Crafts
Doing arts & crafts is a great way to keep your kids busy and let them explore their creative side. There’s no limit to the arts and crafts projects they could participate in. They could create custom jewelry from beads, make their own version of slime, or make tie-dye shirts.
If you’re struggling to come up with a fun arts and crafts idea, think about what your children enjoy. If they like comic books, they could create a comic book based on their life. If they like animals, they could create their favorite animals out of modeling clay and paint them. Coming up with crafts your kids will really enjoy doing is key. If you aren’t sure what those crafts are, simply ask them what they’d like to do.
Visit A Museum
If there’s a museum near you, take a family trip and visit it. This is an activity that’s both educational and fun for your children.
This could be a fine arts museum, a historical museum, or a museum dedicated to a specific industry or event. For example, if your family likes cars, the National Automotive & Truck Museum in Indiana displays a number of retro vehicles. If your children haven’t seen a retro truck before, this could be a unique place to take them.
If you’re worried your child won’t have fun during this trip, do some research on the museum beforehand. It may have a section dedicated to children’s activities. If you can’t find a museum in your area, try looking into other fun educational activities, like going to a science center or an aquarium. These places will likely have activities for children.
Go To The Zoo
A popular family-friendly activity parents like to do is take their children to the zoo. Kids like going to the zoo because they see animals they don’t get to see in everyday life, such as elephants, monkeys, and lions. The zoo also serves as an educational experience for kids. They can learn about the animals’ natural habitats and their habits in the wild.
Some zoos have family-themed specials or events throughout the year. If you’re on a budget, but still want to bring your kids to the zoo, research if any zoos near you offer these kinds of deals. That way, you can plan a memorable weekend without breaking the bank.
Go Ice Skating
If you live near an ice rink, take your family ice skating for a day. Many rinks host an open skate for members of the community, so research when your local rink does and take the family. This is a fun activity that gets the whole family exercising and developing a new skill. If your kids like it, you could introduce them to other activities that involve skating, like hockey and figure skating.
Take A Road Trip
Is there a place you and your family have always wanted to go, but never had the time to make the trip? If so, make some time this weekend and take a road trip.
Pick somewhere that’s not too far of a drive for a weekend trip. Someplace that’s two or three hours away would work. Choose where you want to go and look up what there is to do in that area. Once you get an idea of where to go and what to do, make the travel arrangements and hit the road.
Taking a road trip together will help your family bond and create memories together. Plus, traveling allows your children to explore new places and take a small break from their usual routine. It also gives families a chance to talk more. If you’re on the road for a couple of hours, you have to pass the time somehow. You can play games, or you can use the time to talk as a family.
Explore Your Community
If you can’t a trip out of town, then take a day to explore the town you live in. How well do your children know their community? Do they know who owns the local flower boutique, or where the best place to grab breakfast is? Children should know their community. Take some time to explore your town and teach them about it.
You could take them to some of your favorite places around town and places they’ve never been before. This also gives you a chance to get to know the community better. Do you know how long the shop that does car repairs has been in business for? Or why there’s a certain landmark in your town? Think of this as a chance for the entire family to get to know their surroundings better.
Visit A Bookstore
When was the last time you and your family visited a bookstore? If it’s been a while, take your kids to a local bookstore and let them pick out a new book. This will encourage them to read more, and you’ll support a local business. It’s a win-win for your kids and your community.
Getting your children actual books also promotes reading, which will help them spend less time looking at screens. We live in a digital age, which means children are constantly looking at screens when watching TV, playing video games, or scrolling through social media. Buying actual books for your children will give them a break from screens while encouraging creativity and imagination.
Spending time with your family is incredibly important. Time flies by when you have children, so you want to hold on to every moment you spend with them. Participating in these activities as a family will strengthen your family ties and create memories that last a lifetime.
Remember, planning these memorable weekend activities doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. Sticking to a budget is important, so don’t go above and beyond your means for these activities. It’s not about how much money you spend. It’s about spending time with your kids and making sure everyone has fun. If your kids are smiling at the end of the day, then you know you did it right.