Winter is here…
Winter in Iowa can be a bit brutal. We have below freezing temperatures and usually end up with quite a bit of snow. The snow is less of an issue for kiddos. They typically love playing in the snow. But when it is below freezing outside, I can’t send my preschoolers outside or take my 19-month-old out to play. This means they end up with a lot of built up energy that needs to be burned off somehow. Below are some fun winter activities that you can do with your kiddos. Yes, some of them are outside because fresh air is important. Just make sure you do those on a day that isn’t freezing and you don’t keep them outside too long.
Indoor Winter Activities
In my preschool room, we have a Friday dance party every week. We spend the last 10-15 minutes of class time jumping around and being crazy. Some weeks they get to pick the music and other weeks, I choose. If you can make it work in your schedule, have a dance party every single day. Have a dance party more than once a day. They are fun for everyone involved. Mama, you should dance, too. It’ll help build confidence in your child to see you dancing and enjoying yourself. Show your child that you are confident and willing to be silly. They’ll feel more comfortable being silly if you do it with them. Our daughter constantly asks for music and it is the cutest thing ever when she dances. It always brings a smile to my face.
Indoor Obstacle Course
Obstacle courses are really fun and they don’t have to be difficult to make. You can use pillows, hula hoops, boxes, masking tape, chairs, really anything you can find. Set them up so kiddos have to crawl, jump, run, walk, move forward and backward, zigzag, hop on one foot, etc. If you have a ball, you can include catching and throwing. Get creative, or better yet, have the kiddos get creative and help you create the course. When I’ve done this in the past, we timed the kiddos and recorded the times to see if they could improve the second or third time they completed the course.
A scavenger hunt can be done indoors or out. You can grab a copy of my FREE outdoor Winter Scavenger Hunt in the printables library. To create your own scavenger hunt, spend five minutes walking around your house or neighborhood writing down different things that your kiddos can search for and find. Give them the list and let them go. You can make the hunt as simple or challenging as you wish, depending on how much time you want your kiddos to spend searching for the items. If you don’t want to create your own scavenger hunt, you can download a copy of mine or search on Pinterest. There are tons available.
Art is really fun for kiddos. The best sorts of activities are process art projects. They are typically easier to set up because you just have to provide the materials. The kiddos then get to enjoy the process of making the art. The end result isn’t important. Process art focuses on how kiddos create the art. If you search Pinterest for process art activities, you will find tons and tons of ideas. It is as simple as giving your toddler a piece of paper and some paint. They can use their hands to paint or you can provide a variety of painting utensils (paintbrush, sponge, stamps, rollers, etc.). You could give your child colored rice or noodles and glue and have them create some sort of design. There are so many art activities your child can do and they truly don’t have to be difficult. They might be messy, but that’s part of the fun.
Enjoy a Movie Marathon or Host a Read-In
These two activities aren’t going to burn off energy, but they will keep you cozy on a cold winter’s day. Make hot chocolate. Wear pajamas. Make a blanket fort and enjoy some movies. Or do all of the above, minus the movies, and read some favorite books. Invite some friends over to enjoy the day, too. When I was in fourth grade, my teacher had a “read-in” once a quarter or something like that, and we got to bring in blankets and pillows and read for the day. I LOVED it!
Outdoor Winter Activities
These activities seem pretty obvious, but sometimes we forget about the simplest things.
- Build a Snowman – such a simple activity, but oh so fun!
- Have a Snowball Fight – make sure you talk about safety and any rules you may need
- Shovel the Sidewalk – children love to do “adult work” so why not get them involved and helping out?
- Paint the Snow – I just did this in my preschool class. I gave each kiddo a paintbrush and some non-toxic washable tempera paint. They each had a space of their own to paint whatever they wanted.
- Make a Snow Angel – again, so simple, but they’ll love to see their creation when they’re done
- Go Ice Skating
There are tons of other winter activities that you and your family can enjoy this winter but this list will get you started. I’m looking forward to doing some of these activities that we haven’t had a chance to do yet. I think our winter is really just starting, so we have a few more months to have some wintertime fun! I’d love to hear what winter activities you and your family come up with! Feel free to share in the comments below!
Don’t Forget to Pin It for Later!