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First day back at school today after a big two month long holiday! My middle miss is very emotional and after some splashing in the pool time to relax, she needs a calming activity before I pop her to bed (which won't be long, and its only 4.45pm).

School can be very stressful for kids! After spending all day in chairs being told what to do, getting outdoors – in nature – is my favorite way to help my kids decompress. However, some fun ideas for before bedtime to help kids decompress after school are below:

  • Detailed coloring pages. There are a lot of these that you can download for free online – Print Mandala is our personal favorite site.

  • Sticker books.

  • Sensory activities. Scented Play dough by our favourite Perth dough maker, Dough La La and sand trays rank high on our list.

  • Household chores. Once these are clearly defined and kids are willing to do them without fussing, household chores can be a very calming part of their day! Contributing to the family can be a very rewarding feeling!

  • Dot to Dots. These are particularly useful when you need kids to be quiet. Each dot to dot takes my kids at least half an hour. I copy the pages using my printer and they all work on the same dot to dot together.

You may be surprised that reading is not on my list. Reading is a distracting soothing technique. For kids to process their days, they need time where they can think. All of the activities above are simple enough that kids can think through things in their head while they do them.

What are your favorite calm activities for kids?


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