5 Fun & Easy Holiday Activities for Kids

Spending time with friends and family during the holidays is always a joyous occasion. Yet, the preparation and cleaning duties can take a toll on some homeowners. Here are a few fun and simple activities to get your kids, or those of your friends and family, involved in preparing for the holidays.

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Image via Flickr/ Svante Adermark

#1 Meal preparation

Giving kids a big-kid role in the preparation of a meal will help them feel important. Most children, except the smallest toddlers, can help by lending a hand in the kitchen mashing potatoes, tearing lettuce for salad or washing vegetables or plates. Make sure to keep them a safe distance away from the oven or stove to avoid potential burns.

Children are also the perfect candidates for setting the table. Put out one place setting as an example and let them do the rest. If you are using the good china for the holiday meal, it might be worth explaining safe handling to the children beforehand to avoid broken dishes.

#2 Decorating the dining table

You can also have your kids get creative by making placemats and cardholders for your table. Fun art projects like this keep kids occupied and result in lovely table settings. There are various types of place settings they could create – festive cards with their personal drawings, paper placement with their individual Christmas images and even some table accessories like paper mache Christmas trees, paper candles and the like.

#3 Acting as the host

Preparing for company can make hosting duties like answering the door difficult. Rather than having to leave the kitchen every time the door rings, instruct your children on the proper greeting protocol. That way you can focus on the meal, and they will be the first adorable and friendly face your visitors see coming in the door. If you have pets, you might put them upstairs or in another room where they can’t escape out the front door while people come in.

#4 Cleaning duties

The holidays are a great time to demonstrate the importance of cleaning dishes after eating. Children can pitch in and help with the hosting by removing plates from the table. Again, make sure they don’t run or handle the good dishes without proper care. You can even have them scrape the food off the plates into the sink so you only have to wash the dishes. You can also have them dry the dishes if you want to clean them the old-fashioned way. Otherwise, having a dishwasher handy will speed up the cleaning process.

#5 Praise and good cheer all around

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Last but not least, don't forget to give your children a reward for all their help. Reward your children for their excellent assistance by giving them extra dessert or just praise and lots of love. That way they’ll feel more excited and gung-ho about their duties during the next holiday. If they did something wrong, don’t scold them. Calmly explain where they went wrong and keep your voice upbeat as you show them the correct steps.

Conclusion

The holidays can be an extremely stressful time for the family and especially the adults. To help keep the mood upbeat and casual, find ways for your children to ease your tension and feel included. While they might think sitting on the couch and watching a holiday special is preferable, there are plenty of ways to make the preparation fun and exciting for them, too.

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5 Fun & Easy Holiday Activities for Kids

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