When you're a kid, a snow day is like a gift from the universe (that is, until you start to get bored). When you're a grown-up trying to balance daily life and work with keeping kids entertained, it can be a challenge too. Fortunately, there are lots of super fun snow day activities for kids that use things you already have around the house. These are a few of our favorite ideas.
Freeze Toys in Ice
If it's really cold out, a snow day is the perfect chance to freeze action figures, little dolls, tiny dinosaurs, or any other small toy in ice. They make a cute and playful decoration for your front window or porch railing too. Just grab a plastic container and fill it with water. Put the toy in there and set it outside to freeze.
If you have trouble getting the frozen toys out of the plastic containers, just use a little hot water on the bottom of the container to melt it a tiny bit. It should slide right out.
Build a Fort: Inside or Out
If it's not too cold and awful out, head outside to build a fort in the backyard or at the park. If you'd rather stay inside, this is the perfect chance for an indoor blanket fort. Grab your dining room chairs, lots of pillows and blankets, and if you're feeling super fancy, some twinkle lights from your holiday decorations.
Make a Creative Snack Mix
Firing up the old oven might be a bit much if you're trying to get other stuff done, but kids can make a snack mix out of almost anything you have in your pantry. Pretzels, mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, raisins, nuts, you name it. The weirder and more creative it is, the better.
Play Snow Tic-Tac-Toe
If you have a flat space in your yard or driveway, bundle up and head outside for a good game of snow tic-tac-toe. Grab a stick and draw the tic-tac-toe board. Then use snowballs, pinecones, or rocks to be your pieces. The great thing about this is you can play game after game.
Paint the Snow Outside
Snow paint is easy to make. You just need an old squeeze bottle (like a dish soap or mustard bottle), some water, and some food coloring. Mix the water and food coloring together and then spray your designs on the snow.
Make Snow Day Bookmarks
Cut bookmarks out of blue construction paper and use white paint to give them a snowy makeover. We love adding some glitter too to make them extra fancy. Go for a snowman, snowflakes, or just a simply snowy scene. There's no wrong way to do it, and every time you use the bookmark, you'll think of the fun day off.
Hold a Timed Costume Show
Whether you've got lots of dress-up stuff or just a few pieces from old Halloween costumes around, you can put together a weird costume on a snow day. We love setting a timer for five minutes and meeting back up in the living room in the weirdest outfit we could find in that time limit. Once everyone has had a chance to walk the runway with their look, do it again. Don't forget to take tons of photos too.
Decorate Coffee Filter Snowflakes
Sure, you can cut snowflakes out of sheets of paper (and we love how beautiful they can be), but it's fun to add color and style by starting with coffee filters instead. You just need some white coffee filters, scissors, markers, and some tape to hang them up when you're done. The light will shine through the coffee filters and make them glow when you hang them in the window.
Write or Draw a Cooperative Snow Day Story
Writing a story on your own is fun, but it can be hilarious to do it with another person (or more than one). We like starting with one weird sentence about a snow day and then alternating "fortunately" or "unfortunately" to make the story even more interesting. For younger kiddos or kids who don't love writing, you can create a cooperative picture book.
Transform a Cardboard Box
If you have some empty cardboard boxes around your house, hand them over to the kids along with lots of art supplies. The only goal here is to turn the box into something it's not. It can be anything from a rocket ship to an arcade game to a fun cat tree. Get creative and color it or paint it to look amazing.
Compete to See Who Can Stack the Most Paper Cups
Too cold to go outside? One of our favorite things to do on a snow day is to have a paper cup stacking competition. The person who can stack them the highest is the winner and gets to knock down all the cup structures before you try again.
Don't have any paper cups? No problem. This engineering challenge really works with anything light you can stack.
Make an Indoor or Outdoor Obstacle Course
Get ready to make the house a little more chaotic by turning it into an obstacle course. Couch cushions, bean bags, pillows, blankets, and other obstacles can be super fun and challenging. Even better, if it's not freezing, do this outside and use the snow to make a course for each other.
Have an Indoor Snow-Shoveling Contest
If you can go outside and shovel, that's awesome (and super helpful), but that's not always possible. Instead, grab a bag of cotton balls and as many plastic spoons as there are people playing. Give each person a container and a spoon. Using only one hand and only touching the cotton balls with your spoon, see who can scoop up the most.
Set Up a Hot Chocolate Creation Station
There's nothing like hot chocolate after you've been playing outside (or even if you haven't). You don't have to settle for a simple Swiss Miss, though. Break out the sprinkles, marshmallows, chocolate chips, and even ice cream to use as toppings.
Get Creative With Snow Day Activities
An extra day off in the middle of winter doesn't have to be boring or blah. If you're wondering what to do on a snow day, just look around your house for what you might have handy. Then use these ideas, get creative, and make some winter memories together.