February 15, 2019
Planning Ahead: Indoor Activities

10 Fun and Engaging Activities for Your Next Snow Day

Filling countless hours of kids’ time can be a challenge, so, we have compiled a list of 10 fun and engaging activities for your next snow day. This is never truer than when the weather is too cold, windy, or wet to go outside. Because planning ahead can help, here is a list of engaging indoor activities that will keep kids learning . . .even if they don’t realize it. In each activity, the learning opportunity area is highlighted in italics.

  1. Search through the house for items that have to do with snow. The person who finds the highest number of objects in 15 minutes (or another period of time) is the winner. There can also be prizes for specialty categories — such as the most creative connection to snow. Learning opportunity: mathematics (counting).
  2. Use a dry erase marker to enhance the snowy scene viewed through one (or more) of the picture windows at home. Once the artwork is done, convert the area into a photo booth and encourage kids to take snow day pictures in front of their creation. It is a great chance for them to wear their winter clothes indoors, inside out, or backwards. Learning opportunity: art and photography.
  3. Bring some snow inside in a large tub or plastic swimming pool. Add measuring cups, gallon jugs, bottles, spoons, or other items. Play with it in the bathroom or a kitchen space that is easy to access. This is not as hard to clean up as you might think and will keep kids engaged for quite a while. Learning opportunity: mathematics (measurement), science (properties of water).
  4. Make hot chocolate spoons. Melt some chocolate, pour it into a greased ice cube tray or small cup, and freeze it — possibly on an outdoor table or set of stairs. As the chocolate chills, add a small spoon to each cup or cube. By afternoon, kids can use these spoons to make hot chocolate that is a step above ordinary. Learning opportunity: mathematics (measurement), culinary exposure.
  5. Is it getting close to lunchtime? Make eating more fun by creating an indoor restaurant. Encourage kids to assume the roles of a greeter, waiter/waitress, chef, and — of course – a customer. Make the details as specific as possible including allowing for payments to waitstaff, creating a restaurant sign, and writing menus with prices. Learning opportunities: mathematics (money counting, ingredient measurement when cooking), art (sign and menu making), culinary exposure.
  6. Host a snow-focused group storytelling circle. Learning opportunities: storytelling and narrative development.
  7. For parents that work at home, a snow day can become an opportunity to share some of what they do with children. Think of it as a version of “take your kids to work day” in the snow. Older children might be able to help listen into a conference call, make copies, and help organize notes or files. While this idea might not fit everyone, it may be something to consider for kids with the right level of interest. Learning opportunity: career development.
  8. Encourage children to write a letter to their grandparents, teacher, mayor, senator, or congressman describing something that is important to them. For extra interest, draw winter scenes after the letter is finished. Learning opportunity: civic engagement.
  9. Play a version of Scrabble where players only use words connected to snow, cold, ice or winter. Learning opportunity: spelling and vocabulary.
  10. Suggest that kids spend some time on the computer with a snowy digital photo. They can practice playing with filters on a graphic design program to further “winterize” the look of the picture. Learning opportunity: computer science.