Five things to do with young children while the teachers are on strike
As teachers go on strike across the country this week and schools close, parents will be tearing their hair out wondering what to do with their children.
Older kids might be taking online classes or taking care of themselves, but if you’re spending the day with young kids and need to keep them busy, don’t worry – we’ve got a few ideas for you…
Explore a castle
The county is known for its wealth of historic castles, and they could be the perfect way to bridge the education gap while your children are out of school. Children can learn all about the Queens at Leeds Castle, sneak through the War Tunnels at Dover Castle, admire the architecture at Rochester Castle or gaze out over the coast from Deal Castle – to name but a few.
Visit indoor play parks
If you’re looking for a way to keep your kids entertained for a few hours – and give yourself some rest – then you can’t go wrong with an indoor play park. Daring explorers can come face-to-face with prehistoric creatures at Dinotropolis in Bluewater, experience an intergalactic adventure at Kidz Planet in Folkestone, or take the plunge at Flip Out indoor trampoline parks in Chatham and Ashford.
Meet the animals
Although there are two well-known zoos in Kent – Howletts and Port Lympne, both run by the Aspinall Foundation – they’re not the only places in the county where you can meet some furry friends. Wingham Wildlife Park near Canterbury is home to tigers, chimpanzees and a walk-in dinosaur park, Wildwood near Herne Bay has over 50 species of native British animals and the Hemsley Conservation Center in Sevenoaks cares for many rare and endangered animals. There are also a number of animal sanctuaries, wildlife sanctuaries and smaller animal parks located throughout the county.
Stroll through a landscaped park
From adventure playgrounds to nature trails, Kent has some fantastic country parks that are well worth a visit – even in the winter months. Whether your kids have bundles of energy to burn off or you just want to keep them away from the screens for a few hours, there are scenic parks across the country. You can even check out our top picks for winter hikes in country parks for inspiration.
A trip to the cinema
When it’s cold outside, there’s nothing quite like settling down with a bucket of popcorn and a great movie. Matilda the Musical, based on the stage show about a young girl with remarkable powers, is in cinemas across Kent this week. Starring Emma Thompson, Lashana Lynch, Stephen Graham and Sindhu Vee, the film brings to the big screen a musical that has thrilled families in theaters for years. It is shown in cinemas in Ashford, Bluewater, Chatham, Maidstone, Rochester, Sittingbourne and Tunbridge Wells.