Well, the holidays are over, and school has begun again, but that doesn’t mean that winter fun has to end. In fact, now that life is getting back to a normal routine, it is the perfect time to plan some new activities with your kids. Truly, winter holds so much fun beyond the holidays. Keep reading for some ideas.
- Bake Something New
Sometimes when it’s cold outside, you don’t even want to put on your coat. Instead, you just want to sit around the house and enjoy the company of family. Don’t just sit on the couch, though. Use these cold winter days to get baking! Try a new recipe for chocolate chip cookies or something totally new, perhaps like homemade bread or croissants. Or encourage your child to make up a recipe of their own. While this could turn your ingredients into immediate garbage, you might really be surprised. To make the outcome more reliable, try telling your child that you’re going to make cookies, but instead of chocolate chips, they get to add their own favorite things into it. Encourage them to smell some of the various spices in your cabinet, and to choose a couple that they think would work well in this new concoction. Remember that any time you try something new, you cannot guarantee the results so prepare yourself and your children for hilarious failures. Still, have you heard of the pineapple-basil donut? It sounds crazy, but is delicious and must have started because someone was willing to experiment.
- Explore Museums
There are copious museums in Northeast Ohio, and what better time to explore them than these cold weather days? Try a new art museum or science museum or one of the many unusual museums that can be found nearby. Check out Northeast Ohio Family Fun for a vast list of ideas. Allow your child to be involved in the choice, and if the drive will be of any length consider printing a map for your child to follow along with. Give them a compass so that they can discover the directions more fully and learn how people used to have to navigate before GPS.
- Use Snow for Experimenting
When there is snow on the ground, add some unusual life to it. Challenge your children to see who can make the smallest snowman, then who can make the biggest? Bring a bowl of snow inside, set up a video camera to record it melting. Alternately, make Snowy Day Tissue Paper Art by placing pieces of bleeding tissue paper on a piece of watercolor paper, then placing snow on top and letting it melt, revealing beautiful colorful masterpieces on the watercolor paper. Either cover the whole paper in tissue paper or make thought-out designs such as checkers or outlines of names. Try painting the snow, experimenting with colored water (just mix food coloring with water) in squirt bottles, tempera paint, and paint brushes, or a nontoxic finger paint.
- Take Sledding to a New Level
Of course, sledding is the obvious snow-day activity, and you’ve probably done plenty of it. Still, it holds a thrill for all ages. You can vamp up this usual, easy winter time-killer by conducting races with home-made flags and team names. You could take this opportunity to introduce or reinforce physics by calculating everyone’s speeds and velocity. Try experimenting with various sleds; e.g., cardboard boxes, and the lids of large plastic storage tubs. For younger children, consider making sleds for their favorite stuffed animals or dolls and allowing them to push their treasured comrades down the hills with them.
While lounging around the fire and watching too much TV is an easy winter trap, we hope that we have inspired you into a family fun winter!