24 Things Stressed Parents Will Want To Help Keep Kids Busy This Half-Term

If some peace and quiet is what you're after, we've got you covered.
These toys will keep little ones busy over half-term.
These toys will keep little ones busy over half-term.

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Half-term is on the horizon – and if you haven’t got the luxury of taking a week off work, you might be wondering how the hell you’re going to juggle childcare while WFH this coming week.

Well, never fear. We’ve scoured the internet for a range of toys and games that will capture imaginations – and most importantly, attention spans – for longer periods of time.

From puzzles and challenges, to construction toys, and art and crafts, there’s something here for everyone.

If it gives parents some time to get their heads down and crack on with work – or to simply take a much-needed break after a day of towing the kids around – we think it’s very much worth it.

You won't hear a peep while they play this wooden Tetris-like game.
This colourful puzzle helps young children improve their eye-hand coordination as well as colour and shape recognition. They can make pictures with the shapes – for example a robot, fish or flower – or they can try and slot all the pieces onto the board.

Suitable from 2 years old.
Challenge them to make their best Play-Doh creation yet with this colourful set.
This box features 24 pots of non-toxic Play-Doh in various colours – all ready for creating models with. They can press, smoosh, roll, shape, squish and squeeze, and generally let their imagination run wild.

Suitable from 2 years old.
Encourage them to explore with this glowing fairy finder.
This toy is brilliant for getting kids up and about. Not only can they search for fairies in the house, but when they come across one, the fairies will fly onto the screen on the magical glowing jar. Kids can bond with their fairies by saying hello, hugging and feeding them. Honestly, what's not to love?

Suitable from three years old.
Give them a sensory surprise with this kinetic sand kit.
The clue's in the name: SANDisfactory. Watch their little hands get to work with this super squeezable play sand which flows through fingers like slow-moving liquid. They can make shapes, patterns and more as the set comes with a variety of tools and moulds.

Suitable from three years old.
Let their imagination run wild with this wipeable playhouse.
This tiny house can be drawn on, decorated and then wiped clean so they can do it all again tomorrow. It's also very easy to assemble with no screws or drilling, just a bit of Velcro. Winning.

Suitable from three years old.
Keep their brains active with this matching letters and numbers game.
This educational toy is great for younger children who are learning to sound out three- and four-letter words and do basic maths. Parents and teachers love it – especially as it gives kids the freedom and confidence to explore spelling and reading by themselves.

Suitable from three years old.
Get their hearts pumping with this exciting take on the classic pogo stick.
This innovative Flybar can be used by toddlers and young kids to help keep them active – and has a soft durable foam base so it can even be used indoors without the worry of scuffing floors. The foam base supports up to 250lbs (so you'll probably want to have a go too). A word of warning, though – it does apparently make a squeaking sound so you might want to escape to the kitchen for a cuppa when it's in use.

Suitable from three years old.
These scratch art sets will keep even the wriggliest children occupied.
With these super fun art sets, kids can scratch away at the sheets of black paper to reveal rainbow patterns underneath. It's a great way to improve their motor skills and boost imagination. One pack can keep up to five kids busy giving you *at least* 20 minutes to yourself.

Suitable from three years old but with adult supervision.
Let them learn the joy of darts, but without taking someone's eye out.
This super colourful dartboard is a hit with parents thanks to the soft balls which kids throw at the dartboard. It's a great way to enhance a child's mathematic skills and is just generally a whole lot of fun. It's great for half-term, but you can also bring it out at birthday parties and family gatherings for years to come.

Suitable from four years old.
Teach them about money with this fun game about shopping.
If you're looking after more than two young kids, this handy game might just give you 30 minutes of peace and quiet. The game sees kids use pretend money to buy items from different shops and is suitable for two to four players.

Suitable from five years old.
Watch them build all kinds of things with this fabulous fort building kit.
This super cool kit contains easy to use rods and toggles so your kids can create whatever their imagination comes up with. You just need to supply some bedsheets so their fort can truly come to life.

Suitable from five years old.
Blow their minds with this video game maker.
Honestly, how cool is this? Kids can draw their own games on paper, take a photo of their drawing and then watch the picture come to life on a screen. They can then edit and animate their picture – and play games on the Pixicade Arcade. Genius!

Suitable from six years old.
Challenge them to build something epic with this building bricks set.
This box of 1,000 building bricks will definitely keep them busy for some time – plus it's super affordable. It also includes a handy dismantling tool to make it easier to put away afterwards. The blocks come in a range of shapes, sizes and colours, so young builders can let their imaginations run wild.

Suitable from six years old.
Watch them morph into construction experts with this colourful marble run.
Get their creative juices flowing and keep them busy at the same time with this marvellous marble run set. It comes with 100 pieces and 30 marbles so they can play to their heart's content. The track pieces are translucent so they can watch as their marbles find their way to the ground.

Suitable from six years old.
Take their creative drawings to the next level with this light board.
A drawing board that lights up illustrations is basically top of every artistic kid's list. Once they're finished drawing they can simply wipe clean ready to start again tomorrow.

Suitable from six years old.
Nurture their creative side with this adorable pom-pom animal kit.
Fluffy pom-pom penguins, a tiny stripy bee, a super fuzzy owl – what's not to love about this six-in-one pom-pom making kit that should keep them quiet for *at least* half an hour?

Suitable from six years old.
For the budding wordsmith, try this poetry set.
Composing a poem is easy and fun with this colourful and creative game! Players draw handfuls of paint chips and a prompt card, then rearrange the chips to create spontaneous poems out of the colour names.

Suitable from six years old.
Test their memory with this game about the world.
Does your kid know where Machu Picchu is?They will after playing this. The game can be played solo or with multiple people – and with hundreds of questions there’s hours of fun (and quiet) to be had.

Suitable from eight years old.
Let them learn about the inner workings of the body with this squishy model.
This skeleton toy comes with squishy organs (which are removable) so kids can learn about the human body. It's basically like a super fun science lesson at home. There's also a 24-page activity book to teach kids about what all the body parts do.

Suitable from eight years old.
Challenge their tiny fingers with this build your own T-Rex kit.
This impressive dinosaur takes around 40 minutes to build and stands at 38cm tall once assembled. It's a super simple toy that will keep them busy for ages – and bonus points because there's no glue needed, all the pieces slot together.

Suitable from eight years old.
This marble run logic game will keep them on their toes.
If your child is a bit older and still loves a marble run, they'll be absolutely delighted by Gravity Maze – a combination logic game, marble run and STEM toy. It contains 60x challenges from beginner to expert for them to sink their teeth into (not literally, of course).

Suitable from eight years old.
Marvel (then hide) as they build their own paper plane launcher.
This cardboard paper plane launcher comes with a range of paper planes and scoring targets. It takes around 60 minutes to build (a whole hour, we know!) and when constructed it will entertain them for ages as they launch planes around the house.

Suitable from eight years old.
Help them hone their painting skills with these adorable squishies.
This painting set comes with three soft squishies in the shape of a unicorn, doughnut and bear. Your child can paint and decorate them however they please – and then enjoy them as toys for years to come.

Suitable from eight years old.
Watch and marvel as they build the London skyline out of Lego.
This detailed model of the London skyline features the National Gallery, Nelson’s Column, the London Eye, Big Ben and Tower Bridge. Made up of 468 pieces, it'll keep your kids busy for some time.

Suitable from 12 years old.