The school holidays are upon us!

Time top open the mind-bogglingly complicated spreadsheet of childcare and to pass the kids round to our mum, dad, another’s kid’s mum, anyone’s mum – hey, the postman will do?! – still leaving about 44 days of quality family time to fill. Gulp!

Don’t worry; let’s take this one day at a time. We’ve got 10 no-prep ideas to keep the kids entertained for a good 5 minutes, while we sort stuff out/order 40 boxes of wine.

1 Drawing challenge Draw something spectacular: a self-portrait in the mirror; a monster with 10 legs; as many fish as you can fit on the page.

2 Play dough makes Get them to create a pretend pizza, a burger, an ice cream or some fruit while you’re making the dinner.

3 Toy story Make up a story with a few favourite toys and some props, eg, the remote control, a lemon, the oven gloves.)

4 Toy sorty Fill boxes with toys of the same colour. (Such a calming image. The reality will be messier. Leave them to it.)

5 Handy art Draw around your hand and give it a face. Colour the fingers to make crazy hair. Add a hat and a bow tie.

6 Sink or float See if toys, fruit or plastic cups will sink or float in a washing-up bowl filled with water. Keep a tally. It’s science.

7 All in hand Find things in the house smaller than your hand. Collect them in a box.

8 Got it covered Wrap small toys in foil. Try and remember what’s inside each parcel. Then unwrap.

9 Disappearing paint Doodle pictures on the patio with a paintbrush and water.

10 Food smash Put crackers or crisps in a sealed food bag and bash them so they crush. (This one’s actually for you. The bag is the person who invented school holidays).

How are you coping?! Join the conversation on Facebook, @5minutefun.

Article written by Sara Conway