How to keep the kids entertained this weekend – with the biggest playtime trends

Pinterest reveals the most popular ideas

The absence of school, nursery and play dates has left parents looking for additional ways to entertain tots, tweens and inbetweens.

Related: Make your child's summer and pre-order Aldi's incredible wooden playhouse online today

So not surprisingly, Pinterest has seen a huge surge in searches for fun outdoor activities.

1. Outdoor obstacle courses

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Pinterest reports a 1708 per cent increase in searches for garden obstacle courses alone!

That's a huge increase, but perhaps it's not surprising given the beautiful weather we're having in parts of the UK. Not to mention the fact that an outdoor obstacle course is an activity that stimulates the mind and tires the body.

As you can see on LittleWildOlive's Instagram feed (above), all it takes is a few household objects, such as cushions and foot stools. Others have used hula hoops, buckets and balls or anything else they can find.

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See also The Best Gardening Kits to Encourage Little Green Fingers

Let them run off all that excess energy, while learning how to balance, hand-to-eye coordination, as well as gain an increased attention span and have bags of fun at the same time.

garden with plain and roller slides for kids

(Image credit: Cottage Toys)

Or if your budget allows, opt for this Discovery Woodland Treehouse (opens in new tab) from Cottage Toys. It has a climbing frame, slide and elements to encourage play and exploration of the environment around it.

That leave you to get on with working from home, staying fit with Joe Wicks, baking banana bread or whatever else you're doing to get through quarantine.

2. Virtual sleepovers

pink pop corn in paper container

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Charlie Richards)

This search has had a 799 per cent increase on Pinterest in the last month. All you need are comfy clothes - or their favourite PJs - a laptop, tablet or phone, so you can log them in to Facebook, Facetime, Zoom or Skype and some yummy snacks!

3. Free virtual school trips

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This popular activity let's kids 'visit' museums and galleries all over the world. At the last count over 500 cultural institutions had opened their virtual doors, including Tate Britain (opens in new tab) in London, The Louvre (opens in new tab), Paris and MOMA (opens in new tab), New York.

4. Virtual play dates

When kids can't meet up with their friends in person, playing games together on Facetime is the next best thing. Thankfully the Pinterest community is brimming with ideas on how to make Virtual play dates fun.

From Scavenger Hunts and Quizzes to Lego Challenges or Craft and Chat, there's a multitude of ways for little ones to connect with each other and entertain themselves and each other.

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See also how to Make The Ultimate Kids' Cardboard Box Fort 

How many of these have you tried with the kids? And will you be having a go at any more this bank holiday weekend? We'll be setting up an obstacle course, for sure!

Jacky Parker

Jacky Parker is a freelance interiors & lifestyle journalist, specialising in modern interiors, design and eco living. She has written for Future’s interior magazines and websites including Livingetc, Homes & Gardens, Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home for over fifteen years, both as a freelance contributor and inhouse, with stints as Acting Digital Editor, Livingetc and Acting Style Content Editor, Country Homes & Interiors. Her work also features in national and international publications including Sunday Times Style, Telegraph Stella, The Guardian, Grand Designs, House Beautiful and more. With years of experience in the industry Jacky is privy to the insider view and the go-to places for interior inspiration and design-savvy décor.