What are some benefits to playing in the snow?
|Building A Snow Creature!|
Walking through the snow is in itself a test of coordination and balance! Add in activities like jumping, rolling snowballs, throwing piles of snow, etc and you have many opportunities to develop coordination skills in the snow!
Counting snowballs and measuring the height of snow drifts or the depth of snow are great ways to develop some math skills.
Winter is the perfect time to introduce or reinforce some great adjectives such as icy, cold, wet, warm, hard, fluffy, crunchy, soggy etc
Have the children look around at how winter changes nature. What do the trees and plants look like? Can you spot some winter animals, or do you notice any animals missing? You can also talk about the life cycle of ice, icicles, snow, and snowflakes.
Here are some great ideas for some activities to do in the snow that will incorporate the benefits mentioned above.
1. Tobogganing is a great way to develop coordination as well as safety skills. Pick a safe hill away from traffic with a clear path. Make a safety checklist with the help of the child. Once all the safety rules are met (helmets are always a great idea!) you can start sliding!
2. Snow Sculptures! This isn’t your dad’s snowman! try making all sorts of different shapes and figures. Animals, critters, monsters, castles, etc… let the imagination fly! Develop artistic/creative skills, language skills, and coordination.
3. Snow Colouring. Fill a few spray bottles with water and food colouring. Have them create works of art in the snow or on snow drifts. Add some plant life back into the scenery by painting some flowery imagery. Or you can even use the spray bottles to give your sculptures some colour!
4. Snow Angels. Almost everyone knows how to make a snow angel. Lay down in the snow and move your arms up and down to create an effect like wings. Laying down in the snow also gives your child a new perspective. Have them describe what they see!
5. Fort building is a great way to develop math and coordination skills. Make blocks out of packed snow and pile them up to build a wall. Remember to be safe when digging any tunnels as the snow can collapse and cause injury.
6. Winter Walk. Take a walk through the neighbourhood to see the holiday lights, or through the local park to observe how nature changes in the wintertime. What plants and animals can you spot?What winter treasures can you find? You could even plan a scavenger hunt and have the child look for branches, winter birds, etc..
Remember to stay safe through all of these activities.
- Never play outside if the temperatures are below 25 degree celsius, as skin starts to freeze at this point.
- Make sure children are dressed warmly- especially fingers and toes.
- Avoid dressing too warmly as activity in the snow quickly warms up the body and sweat can make a child cold if when they stop moving.
- Avoid aiming snowballs at cars or people, instead try lining up a few bottles or pin a target to a tree!
- Be aware of roads and traffic. Icy roads make it harder to stop and icy windshields make it harder to see.
- Wear sunscreen on exposed skin and eye protection as the sun is reflected off the snow and can cause skin and eye damage even in cold weather.