Entertain kids for less


Nicola Arnold

If you've ever had the pleasure of being in the presence of children, you might have noticed that these little balls of energy can sometimes have short attention spans. Depending on their age, it can be difficult to find things for them to do that don't require you to open your wallet. However, being a responsible parent or caregiver is much like engaging in responsible advertising. It's possible, on these occasions, that you often wonder how you can keep them engaged for a long period of time without spending an arm and a leg. Although keeping children entertained can seem like a challenging and expensive task, it doesn't have to be. By throwing a little creativity in the mix and awakening your inner child, you can entertain kids for very little.

In this guide, we aim to look at a few practical ways you can entertain kids for less than you think without breaking the bank. Hopefully, you'll be able to find both practical and inexpensive ideas on how to do this to ensure both your pockets and the kids are happy.

Indoor learning activities

One of the easiest ways you can consider entertaining kids is through learning activities. Not only are they inexpensive, but they can also be fun depending on your approach. You could consider buying workbooks from your local pound shop that suit the level of learning the kids you're entertaining are presently at. To make it fun, why not throw in a few incentives? These could include monetary or sweet rewards just to keep them motivated. If you don't fancy going down the workbook route, you could create your own learning activities whether it be a spot of maths, learning new words, hosting your own spelling competition, or doing a science-themed game show. Learning activities as a form of entertaining kids have many pros such as laying the groundwork or complementing their schooling. You never know, you might have a genius on your hands! They are also useful if you need something to keep them entertained over a long period of time.

art and craft colouring pencils indoor fun

Library trip

Similar to the previous suggestion, a trip to the library is a great and cost-effective idea for entertaining kids. A library is a place that kids of any age can go to and there is usually a range of things for them to do there. If you happen to plan ahead of time, you may find they have activities taking place especially for kids. Even if you don't take them on a day when activities are scheduled, there are more than enough books available to keep them busy. A library is a great tool you can use to find out what their interests are. Whether they are book worms or not, there should be a book that caters to the subject matters that they like. You can engage in story-telling time or get them to do independent reading. This trip should cost you close to nothing which means can avoid a cash advance before payday comes around.

Top children's books

  • EB White, Charlotte's Web
  • CS Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
  • Maurice Sendak, Where the Wild Things Are
  • Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
  • Louisa May Alcott, Little Women
  • AA Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
  • Roald Dahl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory


If you happen to be trying to entertain kids old enough to watch movies, a cinema trip may be just what you need. Not only will you have an advantage because kids get discounted tickets, but it's also a great way to keep them quiet and engaged for an hour or so. Check your local cinemas to see if they have any deals so that you can get cheaper tickets or discounts on snacks at least.

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Local events

You'd be surprised at how many events take place in your local community that are specifically tailored to children and young people. Even more surprisingly, many of these events are low-cost or even free. These could include colouring clubs, after school and homework clubs, dance classes, community sports, crafts clubs and writing clubs. To find out what's going on in your area, check your local council website. It's also likely that you will find information relating to other on-going activities that you can get the kids involved in taking place at children's centres, youth clubs, and adventure playgrounds.


Seeing new places can be an exciting adventure for kids. Not only is it an opportunity for them to get more familiar with relevant attractions within their city, but it's also an activity that can be inexpensive. You can either hop on a bus or take the train, but remember a bus will be a more visual experience because of the window views. Most kids have reduced or free transport depending on their age, so this means taking them around won't cost you much. The primary expense you'll have to consider is food and refreshments. You can also bring a camera along so that they can capture special sites and moments. If you have the energy, you could consider visiting museums and galleries as a way to give them a few fun history lessons. Museums often have activities for kids as well, so check online to see what programmes they have available.


Kids tend to be fans of eating, so why not create entertainment out of it? Setting up a day in the kitchen can be a fun and cheap way to keep the youngsters busy. You can get them aprons and hats to make them feel like little chefs and work together to create a menu. You might want to stick to foods that are easy to make so that the kids can fully participate in the preparation process. If you aren't interested in doing a full-blown meal, you could simply stick to baking treats. You may opt to bake from scratch or get the readily mixed forms of desserts that only require you to add a few ingredients and pop them in the oven. Don't forget to get some icing or sprinkles as a way to enable the kids to personalize their baked treats.

Baking cakes and biscuits


Teaching kids how to swim is something that can be done at any time of the year. Not only is it a great skill for them to have, but it's also one that can be extremely fun. If you know how to swim, this is the perfect opportunity to show your swimming skills to the young ones. If not, you can always hire a professional and cheer them on from the sidelines or swim alongside them. You should be able to find reasonable deals on swimming lessons if you check your local swimming pool. Swimming lessons are also a pretty good idea as it gives the kids something to look forward to every week if you happen to be looking for something to keep them entertained on a long-term basis. If you can't afford regular swimming lessons, there's no need to resort to a cash advance. Bringing out floaties for simple fun in the water may work too.

Outdoor activities

Depending on the weather, outdoor activities are an awesome way to entertain kids. Not only do they tend to cost very little, but they're also a great way to help them burn a lot of the energy they have on the inside. Here are a few ideas for cheap outdoor activities that should help you dodge a cash advance in the near future.

Sports are a great way to keep kids active and busy. There are a range of sports that you can play with kids in an open field or your back garden. One you can consider is a good old game of catch. All it will require is a ball and some kids ready and willing to participate. Don't feel obligated to stick to a single sport. You can buy a range of items such as skipping ropes, a basketball, football, and tennis rackets. By doing this, the kids have a variety of sports to choose from. You may even find a hidden talent along the way.

Picnics are a suitable activity for kids as long as it's not a wet day. They can be an exciting way to get the kids talking and engaged before going into other activities. If you want to make it even more entertaining, you can carry them along in the food preparations. Create a menu which lists out what you're going to have for the main course, dessert and snacks. Allow them to go grocery shopping with you for the items and to help you put the meal together as well. Remember the best picnic foods are things that are easy to consume and don't make too much of a mess. This could include sandwiches and other finger foods as well.

Campfires, tents, story-telling, and marshmallows are buzz words that should excite your average kid. For this reason, outdoor camping may be a form of entertainment to look into. It's a great way to get kids to use their imagination and it's also a cheap way to entertain them. All you'll need to get your camping party started is a tent, some sticks, and a wild imagination. You don't necessarily have to light a real fire to get the storytelling by the campfire started, however, you can get sticks and marshmallows to make it more fun. Getting the kids to put up their own tents is also a way to teach them problem-solving skills as well as give them a good challenge. Remember when getting tents that the aim is to entertain for less, so avoid expensive equipment that could lead to needing a cash advance. Focus on the free activities and work with what you've got in order to keep costs low.

Teaching kids to keep fit from young is a great way to instill healthy habits early on. Exercise also makes for great activity time. You can get the kids all dressed up in some workout gear and get them ready for some sweaty fun. There are a range of exercises you can do so plan the ones you'd prefer ahead of time. You may choose to follow a dance routine in front of the TV at home. Alternatively, you could create your own workout routine with something like an obstacle course. Skipping rope, relay races and jogging are other fitness activities you could do with the little ones as well. The good thing about fitness as a form of entertainment is it can be done in the house, in your back garden or at your local park.

Following on from the suggestion of fitness as a form of cheap entertainment for kids, a park day is likewise an excellent idea. If coming up with games and activities isn't your area of expertise, a park will do that for you. Most parks have slides, swings and other attractions that kids like which means you can kick back and relax. Kids will often come up with games and activities on their own when at the park so all you'll have to do is monitor them for the most part. Ensure you bring some refreshments and snacks along. Active kids usually end up hungry and dehydrated after a few hours of park fun.

Arts and crafts seldom get boring, so if keeping kids entertained is your prerogative it's an activity to consider. Painting is an idea for an activity you can engage the kids in. Doing it outdoors also means you get to eliminate the risk of paint being splattered all over the carpet and walls. You can have them paint their surroundings, give them something specific to paint, or allow them to use their imagination. As long as you've got a mat, newspapers or an old blanket laid out on the ground, you can do just about any arts and crafts activity you want. If you're stuck on ideas, paper airplanes and jewelry making might be fun.


Kids can be a hand-full, however, with careful planning and budgeting, you can keep them engaged and happy. You don't need a cash advance to keep them entertained because it truly is about the little things. Although kids can be expensive, entertaining them shouldn't be. More importantly than how much you spend is the memories you create through spending quality time with them.

What tips do you have for entertaining children without breaking the bank? Let us know on our social media page. If you want more ideas then head over to this website.

Children value quality time spent in your company and that isn't correlated to money. We see this a being a responsible carer and in much the same for a corporate entity in the way that it advertises in a responsible fashion. For more on this see our commitment to advertising responsibly.