Things to Do with Snowbound Kids
Patch columnist Emily Soares Proctor gives parents ideas for things to do with snowbound kids.
As those of us with kids face down day four of school closures, cabin fever for everyone is mounting. What do you do when playing on the frozen snow has lost its luster? Read on for some new ideas.
Artistic grab bag
This project is a great way to use odds and ends of craft materials. Get a paper or plastic bag, one for each child, and (without them seeing) put an assortment of items in it—foam pieces, googly eyes, pipe cleaners, cotton balls, buttons and pieces of paper. Assemble crayons, markers, scissors and glue for everyone to use. Let the creativity begin!
Put together a digital memory book
A day when you can’t go anywhere may be just the push you’ve needed to create a scrapbook or photobook of a special event, vacation or an entire year. Now is the chance to make it a family project. Mixbook and Blurb are just two of many online options that make it easy to design your own book. You’ll have to wait for the finished product to arrive in the mail, but the assembly is a great way to spend some hours. Or, if you have the materials on hand, put together a scrapbook or photo album the old-fashioned way!
Make a milk jug house
You’ll need an empty, washed milk jug or carton; scissors; construction paper and/or paint and glue. Cut out a square doorway in the container, 3 or 4 inches wide. You can also cut out windows. Paint the container or cover it with paper, adding roof shingles, a chimney (cotton balls for smoke) and even window boxes. Now your child has a new hang out for dolls or action figures!
Gather your snowbound group around a table with paper, pencils and crayons. Have each person take turns calling out a subject for the group to draw a picture of. Or just go freestyle!
Inspire a new game
Sometimes, all any of us needs is a spark to get us started. Set up some of your kids’ toys in a new way to get them started. Pulling out binoculars, a hat and a map may lead to an afternoon as an explorer. Fingernail polish, face cream and some makeup might make for a morning at the spa. Or, assemble several tried and true board games and have your child mix the pieces, boards and rules together to come up with an exciting hybrid. Just be willing to do some sorting afterward.
We all love the thrill of a makeover, right? Have your child see what can be changed in his own room or have siblings compete against each other for the greatest (positive) transformation. This activity might simply involve cleaning up —a win for everyone involved!
Make a movie
If you have a video camera and a basic editing program, you can go Hollywood in your own home. Be as ambitious or avant-garde as you like. Bring on the script (a favorite story) and costumes, or just turn the camera on and see what happens. Download the footage, edit and add titles and music. The kids have just had a multimedia lesson wrapped in an exciting couple of hours and you’ve got something for the family archives.
Give boredom a try
Don’t be afraid to not provide anything special for your child to play with. If you can keep the whining at bay, be patient and let her see what she comes up with on her own. Sometimes the best play comes out of having no obvious options. Necessity is also the mother of imagination!
For more snowbound ideas for your kids, visit this great collection of links.