Folks, I’m here to tell you how to plan ahead to make your first snow days the BEST days with some simple fun ideas for snow play!
These are great ideas for creating some family traditions around the first snowfall of the year – but also perfect for keeping in your back pocket when it’s late February and you are SO TIRED of the weather and are desperate for some fun ideas for snow.
Without further ado, here are three things we’ve done each winter that the kids have LOVED and continue to ask for … and that are simple enough you can pull them together without much hassle. We’re all about the simple solutions!
Snow Ice Cream
It’s as simple – and as fun! – as it sounds. We love doing this for that first fresh snowfall of the year, but any good snowfall with soft, easy to scoop snow will do.
We fill our bowls, add just a touch of milk, and give it a good stir. Sprinkle some goodies on top and away you go! You’ve got a lovely little treat – and no mess in the kitchen.
I remember playing with food colouring and snow when I was a kid, so when my daughter one day wanted to make a snowman and we didn’t have any carrots for his nose or coal for his eyes (yes, I actually grew up in a time and place where coal was readily available for snowmen creations), it’s no surprise I turned to that oh-so-handy pantry and craft staple, food colouring.
I grabbed an ice cube tray, filled it with water, then let her have fun choosing colours. (This is a great chance to introduce a little science into the fun: talk about how mixing red and yellow will make orange, how one drop of blue looks compared to ten drops, and so on.)
The tray we happened to choose had a bit of a diamond shape to the bottom, so we ended up calling them ‘ice jewels’ (this was also the height of Elsa’s popularity in our house, which may have also contributed to the naming).
We love these ice jewels for decorating our snowmen, hiding as buried treasure in the snow, and even forming letters and small words, depending on how many we make.
Bring the Snow Inside
This remains a classic in our home, but was really mostly used when the kids were under the age of three. It’s perfect for little ones who don’t enjoy trying to navigate the snow and bulky winter wear, or for those days when you just don’t want to get everyone dressed in snow pants and hats and mitts to be told five minutes later everyone is cold and needs to potty!
We just bring the snow inside to play! I have some friends who have done this by scooping big buckets full of snow into a bathtub, but we like to keep it small.
Find some plastic bins that are a couple of inches deep – food containers work well, as do toy organizers. You don’t want it too shallow, but also not so deep that it’s hard for a little one to reach in to play. Fill the bin three-quarters of the way with snow. Gather up some small plastic toys that are ready for adventure! We’ve used Little People, toy dinosaurs, plastic dump trucks, and just about everything else the kids could put their hands on.
Even at five years of age, they still want to do this – it’s a classic sensory activity, and a great way to enjoy a little snow without all the hassle.
What are your tricks for enjoying the snow? Any family traditions around the first snowfall? Share them below – we can all use more ideas for making the most of snowy days!