Townsville School Holiday Activities with Tips from Occupational Therapists for the Whole Family
Juggling school holidays can be challenging for most families, not only keeping the kids entertained but also finding activities to keep their bodies and minds active.
It doesn't have to be complicated; some of the most accessible school holiday activities are right here in our backyard in Townsville. Below, we share some suggestions with insights from Occupational Therapists to hopefully make this break enjoyable for the whole family.
Christmas Crafternoons at Museum of Tropical Queensland (Dec 11-22)
Explore your child's creativity with craft workshops at the Museum of Tropical Queensland. These sessions not only enhance fine motor skills but also provide a stimulating environment for self-expression, making them ideal for children of all abilities. MTQ also hosts Sensory Friendly Sunday Morning sessions where people of all ages can enjoy exhibits in a relaxed, quiet environment, wander at their own pace, and engage in conversation with museum staff.
Yoga and Mindfulness
There are many free yoga and mindfulness resources online that you can implement at home with your child, and some are claimable under some NDIS budgets. Practising Yoga while incorporating mindfulness techniques is recommended by Occupational Therapists to promote self-regulation, and improved physical strength in the areas of hand strength, coordination, balance, spatial awareness, flexibility and endurance.
Outdoor Movie Night at home or in Townsville's Outdoor Cinemas
Create a sensory-friendly movie night at home or explore Riverway Movie Nights (every third Friday of the Month) for a different type of screen-time. Outdoor cinemas are a great alternative for children who have difficulty keeping still. Choose movies with visually appealing elements and consider bringing comfort items like blankets and cushions to enhance the experience.
Gardening and Nature Walks
Townsville has three unique botanic gardens including Anderson Gardens, Palmetum and Queens Gardens showcasing a vast array of plant species. This outdoor adventure provides sensory-rich experiences for children, including the chance to explore different textures and scents. The Anderson Conservatory is open every Tuesday 7:30am to 2:30pm and provides a free, all ages, all abilities experience. Or why not transform your backyard into a mini garden. Engaging in gardening activities provides tactile stimulation and teaches responsibility.
Storytelling and Reading Time at Townsville Libraries
Visit Townsville Libraries for storytelling and reading sessions tailored for children. The library provides a calming environment ideal for cognitive and language development, as recommended by Occupational Therapists, especially beneficial for those with communication difficulties.
Beach Day in Townsville
While not all children enjoy a day at the beach day it can be therapeutic for some. The calming ocean waves and soft sand textures can have sensory benefits. For an extra treat, why not bring your furry friend to Pallarenda dog beach and make it a family day out. The open space allows everyone, including your dog, to enjoy unplanned exercise which provides sensory stimulation, helping your child develop gross motor skills and connect with nature. It's a simple and joyful way to create lasting memories while benefiting from the therapeutic aspects of Townsville's beautiful beachfront.
Free Music Concerts
Explore the world of music with your child at the Melaleuca Strings Quartet performance on Sunday, 3rd December 2023, at Citylibraries Riverway. Alternatively, explore one of the many family-friendly concerts in Townsville during these school holidays. Occupational Therapists highlight the positive impact of music on motor skills, coordination, and social skills building. So, whether you opt for the live performance or make your own music at home, you're fostering essential skills in your child.
Board Games and Puzzles
Don’t forget the simple things like board games and puzzles for family game nights at home. The strategic moves of board games and the mental challenges posed by puzzles not only foster cognitive skills but also promote social interaction among family members. As you engage in friendly competition and collaborative problem-solving, these activities become a canvas for building patience and teamwork. Rediscover the joy of spending quality time together while reaping the educational and bonding benefits that board games and puzzles effortlessly bring to the family table.
To infuse your holiday season with even more warmth, download our Kindness Calendar - a unique twist on advent calendar fun.