Children need to play outside every day, even in winter. Going outside is a good way for children to work their muscles and burn off energy. Getting fresh air is healthy for children. Being inside a closed building too long can lead to spreading germs.
For healthy winter play:
Dress children in layers
- Hats and gloves are a must for freezing temps
- Make children drink plenty of water
- Be sure clothes and shoes are dry before going back out to play.
Even though we don’t get snow often in Arkansas, there are still activities you can do outside for fun.
1. Go on a scavenger hunt.
A walk in your neighborhood or local park will activate your child’s brain and body. Prepare for your hunt by doing one of these:
- Make a list of things to look for like leaves of a certain color or pinecones.
- For little ones, draw pictures or tape cut out magazine pictures to a sheet of paper. Write the name next to it.
Collect your finds and use them at home for an art project.
2. Make bird feeders
You can make a bird feeder by applying lard mixed with birdseed to almost anything.
- Tie a string to a pinecone and spread the mixture into the branches of the pinecone.
- Thread a string through the skin of an empty orange half and fill it with the mixture.
- Coat a stale bagel with the mixture and hang it with a ribbon or piece of string.
- Hang your feeders high in a shrub or from a tree branch.
3. Fun with ice
Blocks made from ice have lots of possibilities! Let Mother Nature freeze your creations outdoors.
- Fill plastic containers with water and let it freeze. Free the ice blocks to build an ice fort.
- Ice tray cubes make a fine ice kingdom for small plastic animals and characters.
- Fill balloons with water and a drop of food coloring and let freeze overnight. Remove the balloons and create a yard decoration or just roll them around the yard.
4. Science with ice
Fill empty milk cartons with water and freeze overnight.
Remove the cartons.
Let your child sprinkle the top of the ice block with course salt. Tunnels will form in the ice.
Drip food coloring into the tunnels for added fun. Repeat process at will.
5. Play games
Pretend it’s the Winter Olympics!
View/Download the PDF version here. (Right click and choose “Save Link As” to download)
Click here to visit our Family Resource Library. You’ll find activities and tips to help you prepare your child for life.