Playful Parenting: Bringing Play to Every Day

Playful Parenting: Bringing Play to Every Day

Winter Break Play Activities (Part 1)

Winter break means lots of extra free time for kids who are out of school, which means it’s also the perfect time to find new activities to keep kids playing and learning outside of the classroom. We’ve put together a list of five winter activities – one for each day of the week – to keep kids busy when the weather gets chilly.

Day 1 – Snow Ice Cream

This tasty treat is not only simple and delicious, but it’s also an easy way for kids to help in the kitchen.

What You’ll Need

  • 8 cups of fresh snow or shaved ice
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup milk (any kind)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • Optional toppings (e.g., sprinkles)

What You’ll Do

  • Using a whisk, mix the non-snow ingredients together in a small bowl.
  • Once combined, go out and grab some fresh clean snow.
  • Stir it into the liquid mixture until you get to a fluffy consistency.
  • Top with sprinkles or chocolate drizzle for a pop of color. Serve immediately because it melts quickly. Enjoy!

Day 2 – Handprint Snowflake

Just like the lines on your hand, every snowflake is unique. Make your own handprint snowflakes in this fun and creative craft!

What You’ll Need

  • White paint
  • Construction paper
  • A clean, dry hand.

What You’ll Do

Cover your hand in paint and press down on the paper multiple times while rotating your hand to make a snowflake pattern. Imagine your palm as the middle and your fingers as the branches of the snowflake. Try making unique designs with your fingertips to make it even more special.

Day 3 – Mosaic Snowman

What You’ll Need

  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Construction paper (of different colors)

What You’ll Do

  • Start by cutting out various shapes and colors to represent the body and accessories (hat, scarf, nose, etc.). The pieces should be small, random shapes, similar to mosaic tiles.
  • Next, arrange the pieces in an abstract way that represents the snowman and begin gluing down. Your snowman can be tall, wide, wearing a top hat or even pink!

Day 4 – Snow Dough

When outdoor winter playtime is done but kids aren’t ready to stop playing and exploring with snow, just bring the fun indoors. Snow dough is soft, moldable and cool like snow, but without the melty mess.

What You’ll Need

  • Corn starch
  • Lotion

What You’ll Do

Mix equal parts corn starch and lotion until the dough forms. When it begins to stick together, knead the dough with dry hands until it reaches the desired consistency. If it’s too sticky, just add more cornstarch. Have kids use the dough to build a snowman or other winter-themed item. Or, put the snow dough in a bin with toys and scoops to keep the mess contained.

Day 5 – Frozen Bubbles

This is a fun activity for those days with temperatures that dip below freezing.

What You’ll Need

  • A bubble wand
  • Bubble solution (if you don’t have any bubble solution, you can easily make your own by mixing one part dish soap with three parts water)

What You’ll Do

Bring your bubble mixture outside and let the fun begin! Let the bubble sit on the wand after you blow it to see it slowly freeze and transform into a crystal ball up close. If you don’t have a bubble wand, you can make your own by using a straw or a plastic funnel.

Looking for more winter-themed activities to keep kids busy? Check out our Winter Break Play Activities (Part 2) blog post for even more ideas to try over break.

HANDS-ON ACTIVITIES

Hands-On Activities

DIY Kinetic Sand

Kinetic sand is an easy project that allows kids to explore their senses, build fine motor skills and strengthen their imaginative play muscles.

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Milk Carton Bird Feeder

Have an empty milk carton on hand? Spark some creativity and fun – and put it to good use – by creating a DIY bird feeder.

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DIY Marble Run

With cardboard tubes, boxes and other recyclables, kids can experiment and build critical thinking skills in this fun STEM activity.

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