We are experiencing some rare, late-season snow here in Southern Washington, and my kids are loving it! Getting outside with your kids is fun in any weather (and an amazing opportunity for bonding, exercise, and lasting memories!) However, some of us mothers may not always be inclined to get outside and throw the ball around, and heaven knows I get very tired of pushing my kids on the swings! So, I came up with a list of some fun activities you can do outside with your kids in any weather!
1. Take out an assortment of scoops, bulldozers, dump trucks, etc. and show your kids how to scoop and dump the snow, sand, dirt, or rocks. My kids love pushing the trucks around the yard, and we have so much fun setting up little construction sites around the yard.
2. Go on a nature scavenger hunt – Create a list of items for your child to find. If they are older, you can use a written list, and if they are younger, include clip art or pictures for them to see. Have them walk around your yard, neighborhood, or local park, and see how many of the items they can find.
3. Turn your wood swing set into something special! We have turned our play structure into a restaurant, a grocery store, a flower shop, a snow cone stand….Use your imagination! Let your child be in charge and watch their imagination go wild. My daughter loves to set up her little picnic table underneath the play set and have me come to her “shop” and order things. Then she gathers up grass, leaves, slush, etc. and serves it up on frisbees and in buckets. So much fun!
4. Obstacle Course – Set up a simple obstacle course for your child. Set up cones for them to run through, tunnels to crawl through, things to jump over etc. I like to time my kids and see if they can “break their record” each time. You can change the events based on the weather too!
5. Stations – Just like a trainer, you can have your kids work their way through fun “stations” out in the yard. Have them jumprope for 1 minute, then move onto swinging. They can do things like running the length of the yard, shooting baskets, jumping on a trampoline, etc. The idea here is to get them moving and trying out all of the activities and equipment you have to offer. Kids can get into playing ruts too, so reminding them of their options is always a good idea.
6. Take the indoors outdoors! One of my favorite things to do with the kids is to do what we do inside, outside! We will spread out a big blanket and bring out a box of toys, a stack of books, a board game, a lunch, etc. It is a nice change of pace for everyone to get fresh air and sunshine, and somehow, things they may be bored with in the house, magically become new and fresh outside! (Remember back in highschool and college how much you loved it when the teacher would have class outside?! This works the same way!)
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