In December, cold weather is a bit of a novelty. The first snow lightly coats the ground, holiday celebrations commence with hot cocoa handy, and the excitement of cozy winter sweaters and toasty fires consumes us. But when January and February arrive, the cold temperatures no longer feel new, and children in particular have a tendency to become bored, whiny, and riddled with cabin fever. Try a different new activity on a winter weekend this year to shake things up and keep your kids engaged even when the temperature is low.
- Scavenger Hunt! Scavenger hunts are great fun any time of year, and children can become even more engaged in this fun, creative activity when you hold your scavenger hunt in the snow. Create simple structures out of the snow and hide your treasures inside, pop small treasures into a snowball, or stick larger treasures in a snowbank around the side of the house. Kids will have a great time stomping around the backyard in the snow, finding item after snow-covered item.
- Snow Painting. Children always crave larger canvasses, so give them an absolutely massive blank slate by allowing them to paint the untouched snow in your yard or in a local park. Take several spray bottles, fill them with water, and add a bit of food coloring to each one. Arm your kids with these bottles and let them run wild, unleashing colorful creativity onto their gigantic snowy canvas.
- Make Ice Cream…Out of Snow! Of course, you’ll want to be particular about the snow you choose for this activity. Find freshly fallen, untouched snow, and ask our children to scoop it into waffle cones or large cups. Then, blend a ½ cup of whole milk, a ¼ cup of sugar, and a ½ teaspoon of vanilla, and mix your blend with four cups of snow. Stir until you have a similar texture to ice cream, and feel free to add toppings to make a Snow Sundae.
- Snow Play…Inside! If the temperatures are truly too cold to go outside, bring the outdoors in. Collect snow in buckets and put it into the bathtub. Put waterproof gloves on your children and let them lean over the side of the tub and make snow sculptures and snowballs before it all melts. Minimal fuss and mess, and clean-up is as easy as running the faucet.
- Construct a Bird Feeder. Your kids may have noticed that despite the dropping temperatures and the rain and snow, there are still animals outside, namely, birds! Birds have a difficult time finding food in the winter, but you can help them out by making homemade bird feeders. Fill an empty toilet paper roll with peanut butter and popcorn, or birdseed if you have some on hand, and make simple feeders to disperse outside.
What kinds of activities do you plan for your kids when boredom sets in over the winter months? Swap ideas with your fellow parents in the comments section!