Welcome back to our monthly roundup of the best free days out with kids in the capital (and beyond). I’m Emmy and for the last five years I’ve been hunting down the best events and hangouts for Londoners with young kids and writing about them on my blog, bablands.com. I’ve learnt a lot about kids’ activities since I started blogging, but one of my most surprising discoveries is that the best stuff is so often free. With that in mind, I’ll be partnering with MoneyMagpie each month to bring you the best free days out for families in London and beyond.
Whatever their age, hanging out with kids invariably feels so much easier (and cheaper) in the summer months. When my kids were babies, the warmer weather called for long, lazy days spent in the local park, punctuated by dips in the paddling pool and easy nappy changes on the grass. Now they’re a bit older, keeping them occupied is not quite so straightforward, but a splash in the nearest play fountain remains their number-one hot-weather activity – and one we supplement with art trails, minigolf pop-ups and countless visits to our favourite London playgrounds. Whether you’re in the capital or not, this month is looking particularly good on the free-fun front, with plenty of easy outdoor entertainment to be had – from loose-parts play in the park to family courtyard parties. As usual there’s no need to bring your purse – just be sure to pack the sunscreen.
Kids of all ages are invited to take part in playworker-led play sessions in Mayfair’s Grosvenor Square from the 1st-5th. The sessions are run by Assemble Play in association with the RA, and will feature giant blocks, colourful fabric, and many other treasures.
Head down to the Southbank Centre terrace on the 25th for a chance to dance with Little Amal, the not-so-little puppet who’s travelled from her home in Syria, raising awareness for refugees.
From the 23rd, immerse yourself in JeeYoung’s world of origami objects, featuring a boat, planes and swans floating in a Gingko leaf sea. Write your first memory down on a piece of paper and fold into a swan to add to the collection.
There are loads of family-friendly highlights at the London Festival of Architecture, including super-scale building in Act-ivate! with Matt+Fiona at Hackney Bridge, and creating a string installation in Mile of String with Leap then Look – both on the 11th.
Rip, shape and snip to piece together your own wearable art in Tate’s Make Studio: Embellish session on Wednesdays and weekends from the 11th. Use cloth, paper and other materials to make a colourful creation.
Drag Queen Story Hour UK comes to National Museum Cardiff on the 4th, with drag queen Aida H Dee performing her own children’s LGBT books.
Head to Nottingham Contemporary for Assemble + Schools of Tomorrow: The Place We Imagine – the realisation of Italian-Brazilian architect Lina Bo Bardi’s designs for a fantastical playground.
Informed by individuals with PMLD, Human Threads at Glasgow Tramway takes the form of an interactive landscape or ‘gentle fairground’ that invites audiences on a journey of light, sound, touch and smell.
The South West
Propyard is hosting Courtyard Family Social on the 2nd. Expect a bouncy castle, kids’ activities, and bubble fairy, with music from Friendly Records and pizzas from Pizzarova.
To visit last month’s Bablands blog then click here.