I think we all can admit a love-hate relationship with snow days. There’s a part of me that loves being snowed in…nowhere to be. No running here, there, and everywhere to afterschool activities. No homework. On the other hand, a seemingly relaxing day can become long really, really fast. The kids who were bouncing off the walls with excitement a few minutes ago are now pouting they’re bored. And arguing. And did I mention pouting? Over and over again. So, what’s a mom to do? Here are some teacher-tested and mom-approved snow day activities ideas to keep kiddos busy while also building a little learning into their days off school.
10 Snow Day Activities:
- Play in the snow! There’s nothing better than some fresh air, and snow makes being outside so much fun for kids! They get their energy out while also creatively making outdoor games winter-friendly. (Soccer in the snow, anyone?) They can build, go sledding, play games, and the list goes on. So bundle them up (I know, I know! But it’ll be worth it 😉 ) and send them on their way–or join them if they are too little to tackle outside their own. Hopefully all this excitement will lead to a nice nap later in the day!
- Build a fort…and read in it. Kids love, love, love building forts. They can be creative with materials, locations, etc. Help them add pillows, blankets, and even stuffed animals to make a fun space to play in. Then, encourage your kiddo to find a good book to read in his/her new fort. Even a reluctant reader is more likely to quiet down and get lost in a good book in a comfy, cozy hideout!
- Bake some yummy snow day treats! I know you are picturing the MESS. BUT…kids really do love helping mom out in the kitchen! Pick a nice, easy recipe. Following directions and working on measurements is a great skill for kids, and, BONUS! You’ll end up with a (hopefully) tasty treat for when the kiddos come in from playing in the snow.
- Have a snow castle building contest. Take the outside play up a notch and have a snow castle building contest! Give the kids a set amount of time, and see who can make the funniest/most creative/etc. snow sculpture. If you are brave, invite some of the neighbor kids to join in. If you are really brave, you can have the kids work together on those important team-building skills.
- Make snow ice cream. This is one of my favorite snow day activities because it is fun, different, and EASY. It’s stuff you’ll likely have on hand (three cheers for the snow!!), and it’s quick. The kids will learn a little something by following directions and measuring, and they end up with a fun treat to eat.
- Change it up! Kids love their rooms. And what they love even more than their rooms is changing up their rooms! This is super for spatial reasoning skills, and simply moving a bookshelf or a small dresser can make SUCH a difference in the way a room looks. Also, it’s a great way to get your child’s room cleaned up. (Hint: getting kids to help is FAR easier when they think they are getting a “new” room!)
- Host an art show. Another thing kids love is art. Crayons, colored pencils, paint, pastels, you name it…they love it! Have your kids come up with a theme for their show, and then ask them each to create a few pieces they’d like to include in the show. On the back of each piece, have them write a few sentences about the picture. What is happening in the picture? What did they use to create the picture? What is their favorite thing about their masterpiece? Display the pieces and invite the family to the view the show!
- Break out the board games. Board games are fun and are great at getting kids to think, read, and do math, without thinking about it! For younger kids, games like Candy Land and Uno are great for practicing colors and counting. For older kids, games like Battleship and Monopoly get the kids using higher order thinking skills and math skills to outwit their fellow game – players.
- Put on a show! I’m constantly amazed by my kids’ creativity. Ask them to put on a play for you. If they are younger or struggle with kids, give them a few props and a topic. Younger kids will need more guidance with this one. Older kids can write come up with an idea, assign roles, and even write a script for their play. Set a timer to keep them thinking and moving, and have them perform their show for you!
- Cue up a show! By now, you’ve earned it, mama! (Come on…you were waiting for this one, right? 😉 ) Put on a movie. Pop some popcorn. Make some hot chocolate. And then? Put your feet up and breathe for the next hour and thirty minutes or so!
While doing one – or all – of these snow day activities doesn’t guarantee you a peaceful day filled with laughs and smiles sans arguing…it is a promise you’ll feel good giving your kids an opportunity to mix play with learning. A win-win for all!
Latest posts by Amy Waltermyer (see all)
- 10 Snow Day Activities to Bust Boredom - February 7, 2018
- 11 Smart Tips to Ace Your Parent-Teacher Conference - September 25, 2017
- 6 Must-Dos for a Successful Sleepover Party - September 20, 2017