Your children were most likely ecstatic to be back in the classroom this fall, and enjoyed being around friends and teachers again. With winter break and colder temperatures outside, however, it can be hard to keep your child entertained again indoors. So much time was spent being cooped up inside due to the pandemic, and your children are going to be itchy to do activities and games again with friends and family. Thankfully, there are always fun ideas and ways to keep your kids occupied while you watch the thermostat. 

For Any Age

If your children have boundless energy, it’s time to have a fake snowball fight! You can get creative on what to use for the snowballs, including crumbled up pieces of paper, wiffle balls, even stuffed animals. You can create a safe zone somewhere in the house in case someone needs a break, but otherwise gather up your “snowballs” and prepare for attack! If your family is large enough or you invite their friends, you can even have a secret snowball thrower. Have some of the kids pretending to ice skate, playing in the snow, and ski, while the secret snowball thrower turns around, armed with some snowballs in the crowd. The other players then have to race around to certain points in the house without getting hit by the snowballs. If they get hit, then they become the new secret snowball thrower in the next round. If you have a hula hoop handy too, you can lay it on the ground and have the kids try to throw snowballs into the circle. You can also use a laundry basket or other can to collect the “snowballs”. 

For Older Children

You can do a winter themed Pictionary very easily. Having any kind of whiteboard or large pieces of paper that you can tape to the wall and some markers, and voila! You can make teams of kids or keep it simple by having one person draw and the rest of the group try to guess. Pick winter themed items to draw, such as hot cocoa, decorated trees, mittens, scarves, snowman, snowflakes, etc. You can of course play this with younger children as well, it may take a little longer for them to figure out what the objects are. You can also give them hints too!

For Younger Children

If you have any beanbags or Hacky-Sack or cornhole style bags around, these are perfect for the Penguin game. You can also use toys or other items around the house that have the same consistency as beanbags, like Beanie Babies or other stuffed animals. Have the kids line up next to each other and place the beanbags on top of each of their feet. This will mimic penguins when they must walk with their eggs in between their legs. Then have the children Penguin walk to a certain point of the house, without losing or dropping the beanbag “eggs” off of their feet. The first kid to the finish line wins!  

Katie Kyzivat