Off on holiday? Read this before you go…

Long journeys – in a car, train or plane – can be so boring for children and teenagers, and bored kids make grumpy travel companions. So make your life easier, and their journey more fun.

  1. Pack them a bag each with a favourite toy and some travel treats. Crayons, paper, a hand-held puzzle, a new comic or a favourite storybook. Perfect to hand out when you reach the 30 minute 'are we there yet?' phase.
  2. Arm yourself ...

Unlock some of the simplest treasures as you play outdoors

Take a small patch of earth – a window box or large pot will do – a few seeds or plants and a sunny afternoon and you have all you need to create some magic. 

If your children do nothing else but get their hands dirty when they're outside, they'll be full of smiles. Just let them fill old cups or containers with earth and make mud pies. But you can grow this into something that is great for your children's resilience ...

Give yourself – and them – a treat and go play

A tent made out of old sheets or a tower of Lego bricks, a game of cards or a quick go on the swings, a bike ride with pals or a game of tennis....none of them seem that life changing on their own, but together they add up to something called play – which we know (all parents and carers can see) is good for children of every age. 

Being a parent or carer is probably the hardest job any of us ever do, but it can also be the ...