18 Wonderful Winter Outdoor Activities for Toddlersby Craig Sutton • November 25, 2016
The winter months can sometimes keep families indoors where it’s warm. But there are plenty of fun activities to do outside with your toddler to soak up all the season has to offer. Bundle up and head outside to do one of these activities with your little one.
18 Wonderful Ways to Spend Time Outdoors With Your Toddler This Winter
1. Go Sledding or Tubing
Who doesn’t have a fun memory of sledding as a child down the neighborhood hill? Create these memories with your child this winter by finding a popular sledding spot in your neighbourhood or traveling to a local winter recreation park for tubing. Really adventurous toddlers can even try out the bunny ski slopes.
2. Have a Winter Picnic
Pack up tons of blankets and soup or chili for a yummy outdoor lunch with your family. For an extra experience, make the soup or chili from scratch and spend the morning cooking together in preparation for your tasty trip.
3. Go Stargazing
Winter months bring new constellations. Study the night sky with a star map and then venture out to find each one together.
4. Make Snow Angels
Nothing says winter fun like a family portrait made in snow angels. Get on the ground with your toddler and show them how to participate in this family loved tradition.
5. Go on a Nature Walk
Winter can be a great time to explore your local parks system. There’s usually less foot traffic than in the spring and summer months, so your toddler can take their time exploring the outdoors. Plus, they’ll be able to see nature in a new setting.
6. Decorate the Yard
Let your toddler help as you light up the outdoors with fun lights and decorations. Allow them to make decisions about where decor goes and what color lights to use to get them extra excited.
7. Build a Fort
Find long sticks and tree limbs with your toddler and make a fort outdoors. Cover it with a sheet and light a candle inside while you read stories together in your snowy citadel.
8. Decorate a Tree Outside
Who says you can only decorate trees indoors? Create these beautiful ice ornaments with things you’ve found together in nature and adorn a tree in your yard together.
9. Photograph Beautiful Nature Scenes
Get your child’s artistic juices flowing by encouraging them to archive your time outdoors together. After an hour of photographing things they find beautiful, help them print their photos to frame or put into a winter collage.
10. Enjoy the Silence of the Season
Winter can be a wonderful time to remember the importance of stillness. With all the leaves off the trees and many people staying indoors, winter seems to be even more still and quiet than any other season. Teach your toddler the importance of relaxation and sit outside with them. Make hot cocoa or apple cider for an added treat to keep you both warm.
11. Go on a Color Hunt
Make a list of colors and try to find each one in nature outside. This is a great way to help your toddler learn the names of colors, and it’s also a fun outdoor activity.
12. Create a Nature Collage
Spend some time outside collecting leaves, twigs and pine cones, and create a piece of collage art with glue and crayons. For more advanced children, you can have them draw their own interpretation of your found items next to the real ones.
13. Build a Snowman (or Snow Animal)
The earlier you get your children building things with their hands, the better. Let their imaginations run wild as you use snow as your to media to build traditional holiday characters like Frosty. Who says castles have to be made of sand? Get extra creative and make snow castles with your child, complete with a twig drawbridge and other decorations.
14. Have a Snowball Fight
While your little one might not be ready for an intense snowball fight, it can still be fun to have a mild one where mommy and daddy take most of the heat.
15. Watch for Wildlife
Grab a pair of binoculars and keep an eye out for wildlife in your area. As your child finds each animal, you can reinforce them by asking them to either draw the animal or make the animal’s sound, depending on your child’s age.
16. Paint Snow
Snow can be a fun way to be artistic outside with your toddler this winter. Fill cups or spray bottles with water and a few drops of food coloring for a non-toxic paint. Then take pictures of your mini Monet’s creations for the fridge so your memories together last.
17. Build a Bonfire
Who doesn’t love eating s’mores over a campfire in the chilly months? Younger kids will love learning to toast marshmallows to make yummy dessert sandwiches, and for the older kids, it can be a great way to learn fire safety and fire-building skills.
18. Go on a Winter Nature Scavenger Hunt
Take your child outdoors for a real-life seek-and-find. Put together a checklist of things found outside in winter (pinecone, icicle, berries, a hiking trail) and enjoy as you watch their eyes light up with winter wonder. This is also a great opportunity to practice finding and naming colors, shapes and animals together.
No matter how you do it, get outside with your child this winter. It can be a great time to explore the outdoors and create lasting, fun memories with your family.
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