Snow Day! How to Keep Kids Entertained All Day Long

February 1, 2017

After a heavy snowfall, kids listen anxiously to the radio, glue their eyes to the TV screen to see if they’ll be lucky enough to have a snow day. If you’re a nanny or a babysitter, you have little to no time to prepare for these days as they usually announce school closures the morning. So what do you do for the six or seven extra hours that you didn’t plan for? Below are a few ideas for activities to do during a beloved snow day!

Break it Up

Make sure you break up the day between active, physical activity and relaxing activities – just like they would be broken up at school. Try watching a movie and then going out for some tobogganing or snowman making!

Ask the Parents

The parents of the child can be a great resource, especially if you’re not familiar with the area, Ask if there’s any great parks or sledding hills around the neighbourhood. Maybe there’s a local community centre or activity that the children enjoy.

Ask the parents of the child if there’s anything they’d like their children to be doing on their snow day. Perhaps they have a school project coming up or a test they can spend a bit of time studying for.

Hit the Kitchen!

Cooking and baking are both great activities for snow days. Why not have the kids plan their lunch, using ingredients you already have on hand (to prevent unnecessary trips to the supermarket). Then, everyone can help out in making it.

You can’t forget dessert! Cookies are a great option that provide tons of options when it comes to toppings. Try a shortbread or sugar cookie recipe and add in different things to suit everyone’s tastes – chocolate chips, jam, nuts, coconut flakes, etc. Bonus points if you have icing, sprinkles, candies, etc. for decorating!

Related: How to Get Kids Involved in the Kitchen

Outdoor Activities

What better way to keep kids occupied on a snow day than playing in the snow? Just make sure the temperatures aren’t too frigid to be playing outdoors! There are plenty of outdoor activities that are perfect for snow days.

Here are a few ideas:

Snowman making contest

Have each child create a snowman and give points for different categories (or wait until mom and dad get home to be special “guest judges”)

Capture the Flag

If you have four or more people, Capture the Flag (or a similar game) is a great game for outside. Grab a couple of brightly coloured shirts and split into teams and have each team “hide” their flag. Whoever finds the other team’s flag first wins!

More Outdoor Activities Ideas for Young Kids: 18 Wonderful Winter Outdoor Activities for Toddlers

Indoor Activities

Once you’ve had enough of the great outdoors and it’s time to come inside, make sure the fun comes along, too.

Here are some ideas for passing the time indoors:

Movie theatre

Turn your living room into a movie theatre! Make popcorn and hot chocolate, grab some pillows and blankets, choose a favourite movie and watch it! It’ll be just like the theatre (only better!).

Board game Olympics

Have everyone choose their favourite game and play them all! The person with the most points at the end, wins!

More Indoor Activity Ideas: 8 Absolutely Awesome Ways to Get Kids Active Indoors

Family Time

There’s no better way to spend a snow day than with family and loved ones. Unfortunately, a snow day usually does not include mom and dad getting to skip out on work. The good news is you can still have family-oriented activities without family needing to be present!

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Visit grandparents

If mom and dad have to work, but grandma and grandpa are close by, consider stopping by for a visit!

Plan the next family activity

Does the family have some time set aside to spend time together? If you know of a family day coming up, suggest that the children plan out which activities the family should do.

Get a head start on upcoming holidays

Getting a head start on upcoming holidays is another great activity for a snow day! Making handmade cards for Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Easter and even “just because” can be a great use of time!

Related: How to Make 4 Holiday Kids Crafts (That are Actually Useful)

Something for Everyone

If you’re minding multiple children, try to choose activities that please everyone. If you’re having trouble finding middle ground, suggest that everyone choose an activity to do throughout the day and do them all! This will keep everyone happy and the day will fly by for you, too!

What About You?

Snow days can come when you least expect it, so being prepared for them is key! Prepare a bag at the beginning of the winter with all of your “snow day essentials” like warm clothes, games, books and more. Knowing you’re prepared will make it that much easier when the time comes. Your day may not go exactly as planned, which is okay. That’s why it’s great to bring along some backup ideas as well! No matter what the day brings, the most important thing is that the kids are having fun and enjoying themselves.


Snow days can be unexpected and come as a surprise, but when you’re armed with ideas for fun activities and games, the day will fly by – for you and the kids. Do you have an idea of your own that we’ve missed? Share on our Facebook page, we’d love to hear it!

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