How to keep kids entertained this winter holiday in South Africa without breaking the bank?

By Camilla Hyson, founder of Scribble and Scratch

by Tia

It’s July in South Africa and you and your kids have to survive 7200 minutes of winter school holidays. You refuse to pay the exorbitant holiday club fees. You need to work so going away is not an option. You panic.

We’ve all been there and every holiday we tell ourselves we won’t be back in this position and before you blink, you’re back in this anxiety ridden situation.

As a business owner and Mom of 2 I’ve quickly had to come up with quick crafty hacks to keep the kids stimulated, happy and away from wasting away hours in front of the TV. My 3 year old son who has recently been diagnosed with asthma is regularly in hospital so I’ve had hours to dream up games from basic household items or stationery from the office.

Fast forward a few months and I now have the privilege of calling this my full time job. My ears ring at the sound of arts, crafts or stationery. Crafts encourage creativity. And why is creativity so important you ask? Albert Einstein once said; “Creativity is intelligence and having fun.”

So let’s be clever and have fun…Arts and crafts are an easy way to keep your kids busy this winter holiday.

Crafts for groups of children

  • Shadow Drawing – this is great in the early morning or late afternoon sun. All you need is your favourite figurine (hero, animal or dinosaur), paper and a pen. Trace the shadow and have fun colouring in afterwards.
  • Dried leaf and flower press – Scour the garden for interesting leaves or flowers. Press them in a stack of heavy books for a few minutes. Once they’re flat, press down with glue onto paper and add your own arms, legs and ears.
  • 3M long colouring in – This is great for those cold and rainy days. 3 metres of colouring in will last you for days. Be sure to tape down your colouring in an area with little foot traffic.

Crafts for boys

  • Masking tape road track – make your own little network of roads, highways, buildings and stick your favourite superheroes in the tallest places. Masking tape is cost effective and super easy to clean.  You won’t have to struggle with a sticky residue afterwards.
  • Doodling silly creatures – Take ordinary animals and turn them into something weird and wonderful. Mix up the bodies, ears, fins, furr and see what you come up with. Here is an easy tutorial.

Crafts for girls

  • Diamond dotting- This is quickly becoming a new trend. Just a small picture is bound to keep the kids busy for hours. This activity is excellent to practise hand eye coordination as well as learning the alphabet. 
  • Beading with letters– Make your friends and family bracelets with their names on. This is lovely for hand eye coordination and learning to spell.
  • Origami- This is an ancient art and is still as popular as before. The skill levels required vary greatly and this helps to keep kids of all ages busy. You can find easy tutorials here

Work a few of these activities into your daily holiday schedule and you will see the minutes fly by! With that said, some kind of patience will be needed- there will be some clean up afterwards but it will be well worth it when they’ve spent less time in front of technology and more time sparking their imaginations to new heights. We don’t take any responsibility if you find masking tape under your dining chair for the next 5 years.

You can find all these crafts and many more minutes of fun on our website at

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