Family Fun Night is a tradition we started a few years ago to offset the loss of quality time we experienced when our children got older and their schedules were full.
In 2013 the Daily Mail posted the results of a survey showing that the average family spends less than one half hour of quality time together per week. Parents cited work hours, school, homework and extracurricular activities among the top reasons reporting
One of the ways we bring our family back together after a busy week with a family fun night on Fridays. This post lists our top ten family fun night ideas.
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10 Family Fun Night Ideas
Family Nerf War
This has been a favorite in our family for a couple of years. After the initial purchase of the nerf guns, this becomes a frugal way to spend an evening with the family. The wide assortment of Nerf weapons available offers something for everyone from the advanced high-speed guns that my husband and son have, to the ones small enough for my little boys.
In a family the size of ours, keeping up with which bullets belong to whom used to be difficult until we found large packs of bullets with several colors.
Family Movie Night
Family movie night, complete with buttered popcorn and candy, is another Friday night hit! We use our hot air popcorn popper and fill plastic popcorn holders purchased at the dollar store. Then we bring blankets into the living room and curl up for a movie. To eliminate fighting among the children over which movie to watch, the movie of the evening is always a surprise chosen by Daddy.
Choosing a movie from an endless selection is made easy with an Amazon Prime membership which comes with free streaming from of Amazon Prime Video, or if you prefer to own your movies on BluRay or DVD, you can order as late as Wednesday and have the movie on Friday afternoon with free two day Prime delivery. Also, Prime always has a 30 day free trial!
Family Game Night
Family game night is pretty self-explanatory. There are some great board games out there that everyone can play. However, recently a friend introduced us to a card game called Dutch Blitz. Nearly every member of the family can play because the only skills required are knowing your colors and counting to ten. Plus, the game can be played with 2 to 8 players.
Keep the Olympic spirit going year round with your own Family Wii Olympics! The Nintendo Wii offers a Wii Sports package that allows players to participate in a variety of sporting events while competing against each other. Our favorite of the Wii Sports Games is bowling.
This one is super fun! Theme nights can be anything you want them to be. They can be very simple, like having a Mexican meal for dinner and some Spanish music. They can also be very elaborate including costumes and themed food and games. We typically theme family nights to go along with something from our history study from our homeschool lessons or a book we are reading aloud.
Kids in the Kitchen Night
Kids love to cook, especially when they do not always get the opportunity. Setting up a meal with all the ingredients and a simple recipe and allowing the children to take over the kitchen can be loads of fun. If you have several children and a larger age range, you can put one child in charge and allow the group to make dinner for mom and dad. Sometimes the recipes turn out well and sometimes….well, they don’t. Either way, everyone has fun.
If you are feeling especially adventurous, you can let your children create their own menu and recipes from the items you already have in the pantry. This gets pretty interesting!
For the sake of safety, unless there is an older experienced sibling to leave in charge, we restrict the use of the stove and provide safety knives and kitchen tools.
Geocaching is an activity we discovered as a family a couple of years ago. It’s like treasure hunting with a GPS and my family loves it! There are apps you can download for smart phone and tablets to let you know when a cache is nearby and to direct you to it.
To help us get started, we downloaded a couple of books and the app for our phones and just jumped in the van and went out looking. This was some of our first swag.
Check out this post all about geocaching for some free printables for your own family geocaching notebook.
Back Yard Camp Out
I am not a fan of camping, but my children are. Backyard camping allows the kiddos to sleep in the tent with Daddy and I get to bring the baby inside for the night. It’s a win-win!
Camping in the backyard can be as elaborate or as simple as you like. Here are some ideas you can include:
- Roasting hotdogs over a fire
- Setting up a tent
- Sleeping in camp chairs
- Flashlight scavenger hunts
- Picnic for Dinner
Lego Build Night
We definitely have some lego maniacs in our house! In fact, our lego lovers come in all ages. Pair that with the fact that kids love it when parents just meet them where they are and play, and you have the recipe for a great family fun night.
Just dump a pile of legos on the floor or on the table and start building. You can each work on individual builds or build a larger project together as a family. You can follow an instruction sheet or just free build.
A favorite game of ours is lego charades. We draw a word from a jar and build trying to make our teammate guess the word.
Family Craft Night
A craft night can be handled much like the lego night above. You can bring out lots of random craft supplies (scrap boxes work great here) and just let everyone start creatively crafting. You can also have a specific project in mind that you can each work on as a family.
In the past, we have chosen a few simple crafts to complete Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes. Check out my Pinterest board here for some great shoebox craft ideas!
Be sure to check out what the other #SimplyBloggers are doing for family fun nights:
Jess is talking about some super fun board games.
Allie is teaching us how to build our own scavenger hunt.
Heather is sharing about some all natural family fun ideas.
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