5 kid-friendly activities to do over the holiday break

There are plenty of simple options that can spark a whole lot of #BlackJoy to kick off the new year right.

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Most parents and guardians of children out on holiday “break” right now all know one big secret—there is no break when your kids are out of school or daycare is closed. Those one or two precious hours alone before you have to work are now filled with the joyous chorus of your beautiful babies asking, “Ma, what’s for lunch?” Or “What are we doing today? I’m bored!” 

During the holiday break, families can find Kwanzaa activities, playlists and traditions to enjoy. (Getty Images)

While the littlest ones may take naps, you just might have kids who aren’t going down that easy and very much would like to know what’s the game plan.

For parents who have nannies or full-time support with their kiddos, we see you; may your blessings continue to flow in 2023. While your situation may look a little different, you, too, might be asking just what to do with the family now that you’ve suddenly found more time together than usual. 

If planning the day isn’t your forte, don’t worry—we have you covered, too.  You don’t have to surrender to just handing over video game controllers and screens for hours to keep them engaged.

Here are some solid ideas to get you going, which can be localized for wherever you may find yourself this holiday season with the little ones you love:

  1. Find Kwanzaa activities, playlists and traditions to enjoy. We’re just a few days into Kwanzaa, and it’s never too late to light candles on the kinara, talk about one or all of the seven principles, and visit celebrations in your town or neighboring ones. There are also plenty of fun Kwanzaa crafts online and games like Kwanzaa Bingo that you can enjoy at home.
  2. Visit a science center. For Black children, exposure to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) early in their development is vital because these skills can better their lives in the long term. Beyond preparing them for a STEM-driven world and economy, science centers are actually a lot of fun for children and are full of hands-on opportunities to explore. Centers often have kid-friendly experiments (you can leave the mess there!) and planetariums where they can watch constellation shows. If you’re in a Northeast state like New York, Connecticut or New Jersey, consider visiting the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, New Jersey. If you’re in the South in a state like Georgia, check out the Tellus Science Museum.
  3. Drop by an indoor playground or gymnastics gym.  Indoor playgrounds are an especially good option if your house or apartment is feeling a bit crowded or if you’re in a cold state without outdoor options. Franchises like Busy Bees, Skyline, Chuck E. Cheese, as well as more locally-based places like Atlanta’s HippoHopp and Hyper Kidz in the DMV area, provide some help with burning off the large amounts of energy kids tend to have when they’ve been inside all day and outside of their usual routines.
  4. Take a dance class.  Dance studios and schools provide the perfect opportunity to get your kiddos moving and burn off energy too! Find a Black-owned school or do a drop-in class for any genre across the African diaspora, including soca, hip-hop, bomba, tap, reggaeton or samba. The Alvin Ailey Extension school in New York City offers classes for all levels, as does the Mark Morris Dance Center in Brooklyn. Also, consider virtual classes, like those offered by the Debbie Allen Dance Academy or Kukuwa Fitness
  5. Go ice skating or pursue other winter sports.  If you’re raising the next Winter Olympic athletes like skater Debi Thomas and skier Andre Horton, plenty of clubs and events will support their interests. As a matter of fact, organizations such as Winter4Kids offer incredible opportunities for kids to learn all about the outdoors while also picking up leadership skills.

No matter what you do, whether it’s indoors or outdoors, with other families and their kids, or just with your own little ones, just know that spending time with them is priceless. The memories you create today can be joyful moments to kick off 2023 on the right note as a family.


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