5 Winter Outdoor Play Activities
As parents, educators and practitioners we are all well aware of the huge benefits of playing and learning outside. However, convincing little ones to get outside during the winter months can be somewhat of a challenge. If this sounds familiar, try these five outdoor play activities which are guaranteed to get your children excited to go outside whatever the weather!
Snow and Ice Mark Making
Mark making is a great way to develop fine motor skills and get children confident about writing and drawing, but it doesn’t have to be done with paper and pencil. On the next frosty morning, try taking a pallet of watercolours and some paint brushes outside and mark making on the snow and ice.
A mandala is a circular geometric design which has repeating shapes and colours. Head out on a walk with your children and ask them to collect some winter nature treasures. Can they use these nature treasures to create their own mandalas? Use this opportunity to talk about symmetry, pattern and colour.
Frozen Sun Catchers
Place some winter nature treasures in a shallow dish and cover with water. If it's really cold, leave outside to freeze overnight, or simply pop in the freezer. The frozen sun catchers look particularly beautiful hanging from trees, so grab a drill and make a small hole near the top. Thread string through the hole and choose the perfect tree to hang your creation.
Wonderful Winter Pies
All you need is a mixing bowl and a wooden spoon to make a wonderful winter pie. Write a recipe for your children to follow. For the very little ones, draw a picture of the ingredients you would like them to add. For those who are a little older, write a list of letters and challenge them to find items that start with the corresponding sound.
Every child loves the classic scavenger hunt. Draw or write a list of items you want your children to find, give them each an empty egg box to collect their items in and off they go! To extend the activity, try adding an item to the list that cannot be found in winter, such as a daffodil. This will give you opportunities to talk about the seasons and how plants grow. Click here for our ready made winter scavenger hunt!
If you have enjoyed these activities and are looking for more ideas to get outside with the kids, take a look at the Play Makes Sense Outdoor Play Activity Cards or the Play Makes Sense Digital Outdoor Play Activity Cards. The activity cards are bursting with over 40 activity ideas to get children playing and learning in the great outdoors.