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by | Jan 29, 2012 | Fun | 0 comments

Freelancing can involve a variety of jobs. That is one of the greatest things about working from home.

While the first activity is directed to the writers in the group, these tips and ideas can all be adapted and applied to fit almost any situation.

I have used these personally to great success myself and hope they are useful in finding ways to squeeze a little extra working time out of your day without losing family time as well.

Child Reporter

Most kids cannot resist the urge to play with mommy or daddy’s toys. We’ll use this to our advantage in this activity.

All that is required is a cheap digital camera and few batteries. Alternatively, you could just use paper and drawing supplies if your son or daughter is the artistic type.

Toss in a floppy hat from the thrift store or one of dad’s ball caps and you are ready to unleash your child’s inner reporter.

As you are writing, explain to your child that you need pictures taken or drawn for your articles. If your kids are anything like my daughter, they love to feel involved in whatever their parents are doing.

Of course, you do not need to give them the real topic you are writing about. Just come up with something you know they will be interested in. My daughter’s favorite is dragons and faeries. I have used this activity to keep my daughter busy for quite a while and get a little more work done during the day.

Best of all, you are encouraging creativity and artistic thinking. You can save the images they take and create mock newsletters or put the drawings in a manila envelope and claim you are sending them to your editor.

Not only are you developing their skills, you are providing them a feeling of involvement and belonging within your work process.

Scavenger Hunt

This classic is easy to pull off on the spur of the moment and can give you a few extra minutes to get a submission polished up or write that blog post you’ve been meaning to write. You can easily turn this little game into edutainment with a few quick changes to your list of items.

Great Edutainment Scavenger Hunt Lists Include:

Items that begin with a specific letter of the alphabet

Items that begin with a specific phonetic sound

Items that are a specific color

Items that are a specific shape

If you set a particular quantity, you count them out with them when they have come back with their list. They are having fun, you are getting work done and they are learning important skills without even realizing it. You cannot beat that trifecta of family freelancing goodness.

Painting Murals

No kid can resist the allure of a good messy time with paints.

The key to making this one work is finding a good source for bulk rolled paper. Many school supply and office supply stores will carry these rolls of thin paper. You can also check office supply stores for large presentation pads. 

While you might find some good options online, keep in mind that shipping can take a great price and turn it upside down in a heartbeat.

Next all you need is a generous supply of non-toxic water-based paint, such as Crayola Washable Finger Paints or Tempera Paints, and some masking tape.

Then, just cover the walls, floors and anywhere else that you might worry about the paint flying. If you’re looking to save paper, you can always lay down painter’s plastic, a cheap vinyl table cloth or even just spread out some garbage bags. 

While this is certainly not completely mess free, this allows them to create paintings and play around on a surface much larger than the average sketch pad and really get into the task.

If you have placed your paper well, all that will be involved in the cleanup process is a quick bath and rolling up some paper.

This is obviously best done in a room free of expensive electronics or other pricey valuables. While it will not be perfect for every situation, it can allow a good outlet for creative expression and development of motor skills.

I hope these ideas help you find more time to work and spark hours of fun for your and yours! If you find these activities useful, or have favorite ways of you’re own to entertain the kiddos while working, leave me a comment!

About The Author

Jon Stone

As a full-time stay-at-home dad of a two spunky kids--2 and 9 years old--Jon Stone spends what little time he can form coherent thoughts working as a content marketing specialist and copywriter. He loves coffee, fantasy novels and Minecraft. Sometimes, if he's super lucky, he reads the back of his own eyelids. Most times, he's just busy scribbling notes like a madman or playing with his kids.

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