Fantastically fun things to do over the school holidays

Mostly FREE things to do in the school holidays including competitions to win tickets to events in the Bath Children’s Literature Festival!

1.BUTTERFLY COUNT: join in the National Butterfly Count so the numbers and species of British butterflies can be recorded, to see how they’re doing. Visit bigbutterflycount.org, where you can download a colourful butterfly chart. You then take 15 minutes (ideally on a sunny day) in your garden, or a nearby park (preferably somewhere with flowers) to make a note of the kinds and numbers of butterflies you see. Then submit your sightings by the end of August.

Photo source: BBC

2.WRITE: Bath Children’s Literature Festival is looking for three young journalists (aged between seven and 14) to report on festival events when some bestselling writers come to Bath this autumn (Friday 27 September to Sunday 6 October). These reporters will join our team, attend festival events, and report on them. How to enter: write a review of up to 200 words of a book you have read and why you’d recommend it to someone else. Email it to info@bathfestivals.org.uk or post it to The Bath Festivals, 9 – 10 Bath Street, Bath BA1 1SN by the DEADLINE of Sunday 1 September. Include your NAME, AGE, ADDRESS and CONTACT DETAILS. The winners will be announced and contacted on Tuesday 3 September. The PRIZE: our three Junior Journalists will join our festival team, wearing their Junior Journalist lanyards, to attend events (to be decided) report on those events and go behind the scenes to meet the visiting authors. Our journalists’ special reports will be posted on the festival website. There will also be FREE books. Don’t forget: you will need an adult to agree to bring you to events. Normal t’s & c’s apply. By entering this competition, you permit Bath Festivals to use your material for marketing purposes.

3.VISIT A FARM: Bath City Farm at Twerton has lots of animals, including goats, sheep, chickens and pigs that you can get close to. It’s also got 37 acres of farmland, so plenty of space to roam around in. Entrance is free, although donations are welcome. The farm has a café and a farm shop selling fresh food produced on the farm. It’s a good way to introduce the idea of where our food comes from. bathcityfarm.org.uk

Photo source: Bath City Farm

4.MAKE IT: We’re looking for clever ideas for things to make out of household items. We’ve all got rubbish around the home, like loo roll holders, cereal packets, egg boxes or plastic food and drink containers. But what could you make out of them? A carboard box, lolly sticks and some paper cups can become a marble run. An old plastic bottle is transformed into a bottle feeder or cut in half and painted to make a plant pot. We’ve got FREE tickets to go and see McFly’s Dougie Poynter talk about why plastic sucks (on Friday 27 September at 5pm) for the best upcycled item made by you. Take a photo of your upcycled creation, label your invention and post the photo on social media using @BathKidsLitFest and #KidsUpcycle . Competition close on Friday 20 September. Normal t’s & c’s apply. By entering this competition, you permit Bath Festivals to use your photo for marketing purposes. Good luck!

5.EXPLORE BY BIKE: The Two Tunnels Circuit is a 13-mile loop, much of it off road, and makes a great day out if you have a cycling adult to go with you. Pack your panniers with plenty of food and drink, download the route from sustrans.org.uk, check your tyres and the weather forecast, then off you go!

Photo source: Sustrans

6.DE-CLUTTER. On a rainy day go through the toys and books you’ve grown out of and take the ones in good condition to a charity shop. Some charities will take your email address and send you thank you messages when your items have sold. So you’re making space at home and helping others at the same time.

7.DRAW: We’d love to see your drawings of your favourite characters. It might be someone from a fairy tale, or maybe one of Harry Potter’s gang, or a character created by one of the awesome illustrators who are coming to the Bath Children’s Literature Festival. Do your finest drawing, tell us who the character is and post it on social media using @BathKidsLitFest or email it to info@bathfestivals.org.uk and our favourites will WIN tickets to a festival event of your choice (subject to availability and excluding masterclasses and workshops). It would be great if you brought your character drawings along to Bath Guildhall during the festival so we can make a display of them too. Competition close on Friday 20 September. Normal t’s & c’s apply. By entering this competition, you permit Bath Festivals to use your photo for marketing purposes. Good luck!

8.VISIT: The Holburne Museum has the ideal child-friendly exhibition on throughout the summer. Lauren Child, illustrator and creator of Charlie and Lola, has a beautiful exhibition of her pictures from storybooks such as the Princess and the Pea which show her love of colour and pattern. There’s also a Charlie and Lola trail to follow. Entrance is free for under 18s, adult tickets are £12.50 or  everyone can visit for FREE on Wednesday 3-5pm . holburne.org

Photo source: The Holburne Museum

9.PICNIC IN THE PARK: Bath has some great green open spaces which are free for us to enjoy. Arrange to meet some other families, take a ball and set up some games before tucking into food and drink you’ve brought from home.

Photo source: Priscilla Davis Studios

10.EXTREME READING: following last year’s successful extreme reading challenge in which we saw people reading books in extraordinary and unusual places over the summer holidays, we’d like to challenge you again to have your photo taken while reading in an unexpected way. Please post your extreme reading photos and tell us where you are – up a tree, in a tent, in the sea ­- on social media with “We love @BathKidsLitFest ” to be in with a chance to WIN 4 tickets to an event of your choice (subject to availability and excluding masterclasses and workshops). Normal t’s & c’s apply. By entering this competition, you permit Bath Festivals to use your photo for marketing purposes. Good luck!

11.PLAY AT BEING A TOURIST: if you live in Bath how often do you look around you and appreciate the interesting and beautiful places in your neighbourhood? Take your camera phone or a sketchbook and explore the streets near your home, recording anything from an interesting door knocker to an old and beautiful tree. At the end of the day you’ll have a collection that will show your eye for detail.

12.READ: Join in the public libraries Summer Reading Challenge (register at summerreadingchallenge.org.uk) and chat with other readers, recommend books that they might enjoy and keep a record of all the great reading you’re doing over the school holidays.

Photo source: Summer Reading Challenge

 

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