It is no secret I love the opportunity to create play experiences for our young learners-those that are fun, engaging, inspiring, made with intention and ultimately foster a love for learning.

…so when it comes to the school holidays with our regular activities collapsing, we put a school holiday play plan together. It is really nothing fancy or set in stone, simply a plan with some structure to enjoy the holiday time and tick off a few activities on our bucket lists.

Here is a brief set of steps we take to make this happen. I aim to do this during the last week of term but this time round it is running a tad late-who am I kidding-it is at the eleventh hour but nonetheless, completed just in time.


Print off a calendar with the public holidays, festivals and special events listed as happening in NSW. For us these holidays we have Christmas, Boxing Day, New Years and Australia Day.


Choosing a theme is an ideal starting point for planning most events. It provides us with a sense of direction and also helps dictate a budget when factoring in entry fares, parking fees, petrol and the purchasing of play resources. We recommend choosing themes that are versatile, meaning they can be mixed and matched to create themes in the future for school holiday plans and/or birthdays and for subsequent children.

Two of the themes we have planned for these school holidays are: Small World Play and discover the world. Check out the list of our planned activities further down.

3. //OUTINGS//

Throughout the year we note down places to visit-kind of like a bucket list. These places relate to interest, conversation, learning and our preschooler gets to nominate a place or two. Each holidays we try to tick off as many of these places as we can. If a place is dependent on weather we check out the long range weather forecast, choose what day is best for this particular place and pencil it in. We then pop in all other outings.


Each school holidays we try to set days aside to meet up with friends for playdates. Once a location, date and time are set we pencil it in.


Each school holidays we schedule in stay at home days so we can catch up on our chores and enjoy a rest.


One of my goals this year was to live life with more intention and part of that was to create meaningful play opportunities for our little learners. I mentioned above that we had chosen two themes for these holidays- Small World Play and discover the world. Here are some of the activity ideas we have in mind:

* Australia Small World

* Sand Art

* Christmas Around the World Booklet

* Beach Small World

* Christmas Craft

* Christmas Light Show

* Santa’s Workshop

* Post Office Dramatic Play Learning Station

* North Pole Small World 

We pencil our plans in so that they remain somewhat flexible and allow for change if necessary. Eg. Our stay at home days can be swapped with our outings and/or playdates if necessary.

How do you plan for play in the school holidays? And do you have any must-have activities to add to our list?