The Winter Games…..Outdoor Ideas for Preschoolers on a Snowy Day!

The best way to learn about winter is to get out and explore it!  Here are some ideas for some fun in the snow!

  •  Fill spray bottles or squeeze top bottles (dish soap, Gatorade) with colored water and create designs in the snow.
  • Make tracks in the snow using a variety of objects (cars, spoons, shoes).  Play a guessing game to match the tracks to the objects.
  • Look for animal tracks.
  • Experiment with freezing different sized containers of water outside.  Which freeze fastest?
  • Place a small plastic toy in water and let it freeze outside.  Bring it inside and experiment with ways to thaw it out.
  • Go Sledding!
  • Bring a container of snow inside and let it melt.  Look with a magnifier at the impurities in the resulting water.
  • Bring in snow and put it in a pot or electric skillet.  Pour salt on it and watch it melt.  Apply heat and melt completely to water, then boil it.  Collect some of the steam on a lid or dish.  You can talk about the water cycle, phases of matter, as well as the fact that when the water evaporates, the salt is left behind.  (This is a complex concept to really grasp, but children enjoy the activity.  I used it to answer a child’s question as to why the snow leaves “white stuff” on our cars.)
  • Build a snowman or snow fort!
  • Use the same tools you would use for sand castles to build snow castles.
  • Press cookie cutters into the snow to make shapes, or use letter cookie cutters to write a message.  This works best in packed snow.  If you’re worried about cutters disappearing, put the snow in a baby pool or in your sensory table.
  • Catch snowflakes on black paper or black felt and examine them with a magnifying glass.

 Outdoor activities promote motor development as well as provide natural earth science experiences.  Bundle up and let the games begin!

For more wintry activities, click here!

Photo by toomas.

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Filed under Get Outside, Learning through Play and Experience

0 Responses to The Winter Games…..Outdoor Ideas for Preschoolers on a Snowy Day!

  1. Hi Amanda! I’m looking for some newer children’s Christmas books. Have you come across anything recently that you love?

    Thanks for all your great ideas. I think you’re a phenomenal mommy.

    • notjustcute

      Hi Catherine!
      Thanks for reading! I’ve been a bit slow to post lately with all the busyness of this month, so I’m glad to see folks are still out there! When you ask for “new” Christmas books, the first one I think of is Mooseltoe by Margie Palatini and Henry Cole (both of whom I quite enjoy). It’s not necessarily new (published in 2000), but it’s new in our house. I read it the other night and my boys loved it! It’s part of a series of books about a moose with an enormous mustache. In this one, he’s so focused on a “perfectly perfect” Christmas that in all his shopping and baking, he forgets the tree. To “save Christmas” for his family, he volunteers to stand in the corner and let his children decorate his mustache. It may sound a little odd, but it’s just the right amount of silliness for our crew, and it’s written so well in fun, enchanting prose. We really like it around here. If you’re looking for a religious Christmas book, I had a friend recently recommend “I Believe in Santa Claus” by Diane G. Adamson. It makes connections between Christmas symbols and Christ in a child-friendly way. I haven’t read it yet, but trust the sources that recommended it. It’s also a “new-to-me” book, though published in 2000. Snowmen at Christmas by Caralyn Buehner is somewhat new (2005), but already a classic, and could go with some of the snowmen activities I’ve posted here. I haven’t read Bear Stays Up for Christmas by Karma Wilson yet (2008), but I love that series and they’re just quality books. This year Fancy Nancy has a Christmas book, Splendiferous Christmas, which is quite popular, especially with the girly crowd. There’s a start. I’ll have to look through my bookshelves to see what obvious pick I’ve overlooked!

  2. Pingback: Repost: The Winter Games…..Outdoor Ideas for Preschoolers on a Snowy Day! « Not Just Cute

  3. What a great list! Some really good ideas. Can’t wait to try some of those out. And linking up to this list tonight on my blog to share your ideas with my readers.
    Thanks for sharing! Found you through Litter Learners Lounge!

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