With the weather cooling down it can be a challenge to keep your active Gold Coast Kid busy. It’s not a case of just heading down to the beach during winter! Here are five ideas to keep your Gold Coast Kid active and busy this winter.
No special equipment is required for this, and the venue can be your own backyard or local park. Younger kids love to walk around and look for “treasures” – lizards, flowers, pretty coloured rocks. Older kids might like to have a list of things to try and find, to make it a mental challenge as well as a physical one. Some things to put on the list include something that floats, something blue, something man-made, a feather, a seed, or you could have them make a list of everything they find and see how many different things they can see.
What kid doesn’t like bubbles? Bubble mix doesn’t have to be expensive shop-bought mixture – you can make it with 700ml water, 300ml detergent (Morning Fresh Original works really well) and 100ml of glycerine (available from most pharmacies and some supermarkets – this gives the bubbles strength). Pour all of your liquids into a 1.2l container with a lid (like a washed out old soft drink bottle) and shake lightly (don’t want too many bubbles – but it does need to be mixed well). It is best if you can leave the mixture for a while, try making the mixture the day before you want to use it. Meanwhile, collect some old wire coat hangers and flex them into different shapes to be your bubble wands – let the kids use their imagination and see whether a square shape gives a square bubble! A dish large enough to dip the wands into (like a laundry hand washing basin) is a must too. Now stand back and let them create masterpieces!
Are your kids just not happy unless they are expending energy? Help them develop an obstacle course around your yard using garden furniture and toys, or at the local park using the playground equipment. You could time each child and help them improve their “record time” around the course. Some ideas of stations to include are climbing over, crawling under, kicking a ball between obstacles, running between or around obstacles, skipping rope, hula hoop, relaying an object (run over there, collect the beanbag, bring it back).
This activity set can be made by the older kids for their own use, or made by Mum or Dad for the little ones. You will need some old socks (finally a use for all those odd socks from washing day!), some rice, a needle and thread (or a sewing machine) and a box. Sew up any toe/heel holes in the sock, and then fill the foot area with rice. Using a straight stitch sew just above the rice, then trim the excess sock. Sew blanket stitch over the edges to keep them together securely. Alternatively you could secure the end with a rubber band if you wanted to make a temporary bean bag (and keep your sock intact). Ideally you want at least one beanbag per player. Then place the box an appropriate distance away from you, and see how many times you can throw it in. To increase difficulty, increase the distance to throw, or use alternate hands or blindfolds.
A favourite of kids everywhere is imagining the floor is impassable – imaginary lava or electricity or quicksand prevents you from touching the floor, and the kids must work out a way to navigate from one side of the yard to the other using some simple props (like chairs, buckets or crates). A variant on this theme is if you have a suitable frame, you could use wool or string to make a spider’s web (or laser maze protecting a treasure) and have the kids crawl through the holes without touching the string.
About The Author
Tony Cross is one of Australia’s leading turf experts and a major supplier of Sir Walter Turf in Brisbane and The Gold Coast. Tony Cross has 24 years’ experience in garden and lawn care and his business, Caboolture Turf is one of Australia’s leading turf farms.