Tips for nannies and caregivers during the school holidays

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Schools out! We're here to help with holiday activities at home
Schools out! We're here to help with holiday activities at home

Louise Botha is a Nanny Placement Agent at The Nanny Corp, a Sandton and Pretoria based nanny agency. We asked her how nannies, and caregivers such a grandparents, can prepare themselves for the June/July holidays when they will be spending more time with the kids.

"It is always important to maintain a good balance and plan," Louise advises. "Every nanny should be aware of the fact that school holidays are starting and should plan to get the hard work done before the holiday starts."

PRINT IT: Find the 2022 school holiday calendar here

"It might be a good idea to ask your nanny what they do in their free time," she says. "Ask her to teach the kids things like making necklaces with beads, teaching them how to knit, or weave their own grass baskets or even help them make drums."

"Let her teach them how to make a vegetable garden and how to maintain it. Indoor veggies can easily be maintained and can be planted out in September for a fun filled veggie garden in the summer," she suggests. 

Let kids be kids

"Making children part of the chores in the house takes a lot of stress off the nanny and it also teaches children that they can help, and be rewarded when the work is done. Technology like cell phones and PlayStation have completely taken over in our kids' lives," Louise says, so it is good to set time limits on cell phones or PlayStation games and "let kids be kids".

Getting outdoors is a good idea, and depending on your location there will be seasonal activities that kids will enjoy doing, such as winter surfing along the coast. "It is also hunting season, so this could be good time for dads to bond with sons," Louise suggests. 

She suggests a few activities to keep the kids busy each day:

Hold a mini fashion show

Let the kids dress up in mom and dad’s clothes and act the part and the one who comes closest wins!

Plan and hold a small concert

Acting and singing is very good for development and teaches them self-esteem.

Have a cooking and baking contest

Let them bake cookies or mini pizza’s, or skewer fruit kebabs.  Let them help in the kitchen with basic duties, as this will teach them cooking skills.

Cooking with kids: Recipes for all ages

Make puzzles - the bigger the better

Let the children build it and then frame it as an art piece in the house. This will keep them busy for a long time.

Create a play room for the children

This will make sure that only room in the house is in a bit of a mess. Let them build indoor tents and make sure that there is lots for them to do. Have books for them to read in the tents, have clay and also some paint and colouring books. 

Jump and dance

Make an indoor hop-scotch game with black board chalk, it washes off very easily. Kids will also enjoy a dance competition, or navigating an obstacle course created with cushions, furniture and toys. 

If your nanny or a caregiver or grandparent plans their days ahead, Louise says, with activities such as baking and cooking, building puzzles, reading books to them, and helping them to be creative, they will be entertained enough. 

If you're still looking for fun things to do with the kids, find more ideas here: Nineteen ideas to keep the kids entertained that don't cost anything


Share your stories and questions with us via email at Anonymous contributions are welcome.

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