I go a little stir-crazy around the house in the winter. We try to go outside for a little bit to get some fresh air. But it’s so cold!! The kids and I have to get out of the house, explore the world, and….see other people. Oh yeah, I also don’t like to spend money. Where can you go to entertain the kids that doesn’t cost anything?
1. pet store- It’s like going to the zoo…only free! Oh yeah, it also has a little smaller animals. No problem. Small animals are great for small kids! Hear birds squawking. Watch fish swimming. Maybe you’ll even get to touch a few rabbits. The kids will love it! Just don’t walk away with another pet.
2. library- Most libraries have a story time, but some go above and beyond with book chats, speakers, Mother Goose time and the list goes on. We’ve even gone to a “preschool disco” at our library! Check with your local library for a schedule of events. Even if there isn’t a special program, a trip to the library is always worth it. Grab some books, DVDs, and CDs to keep the kids entertained when you are stuck at home.
3. toy store- This can be tricky. Only attempt it if you know there won’t be an ugly melt-down when the kids realize you aren’t buying anything (i.e.- you don’t have a two-year-old). However, some toy stores have LOTS of toys on display that the kids can try out. We have successfully gone to toy stores, played, and walked out empty-handed. Try giving older kids a pencil and paper to make a wishlist for their birthday.
4. art museum- This is one of my personal favorite field trips. Some art museums do charge admission, so try out free galleries or even local art displays in malls or civic centers. Make up an art scavenger hunt before you go to have even more fun!
5. mall- Let’s go the mall, today! Or just go to the mall indoor playground! It’s a win-win. You get to people watch. The kids get to play and get infected with all sorts of germs. Wait. Make sure you have some hand sanitizer in your purse. Also, never tell the kids that those ride-on machines take money. My kids were not aware that they moved (and still happily sat, pushed buttons, and pretended)…until granny ruined my secret!
If you are interested in more: Five Free (Fall) Field Trips