After six weeks of trips, ice cream and TV, the autumn term is nearly upon us. As children get ready to go back to the classroom, the start of the new school year means new costs for a whole other year of school books, clothes, and activities.
If you worry about how to afford a new hobby for instance, you’re not alone. Research by Save the Children found that two-thirds of UK parents can’t afford after-school activities for their children. Many of the parents said they would love their children to do more, but frequently had to say no. Encouraging your child to try something new doesn’t have to be expensive. If you want them to have extra swimming lessons, check out your local council pool, which can be cheaper than private courses. For musical types, music shops often sell second hand instruments, while joining a local children’s choir will help you to see if singing is really for them before you consider paying for one to one tuition. If they have been inspired by Bradley Wiggins success, your child may want to start cycling, so why not check Freecycle Network to see if someone in your area has a bike you could benefit from.
Alternatively, should your children be happier sitting in front of the computer and you’re longing for them to get out of the house, take a look at Netmums for information on the activities in your area. With a little encouragement, but not a lot of spend, you can encourage your child to take part in a hobby they’ll love.