Well, we’ve come full circle with our seasonal list of things to enjoy with your grandchildren. In case you missed any of the previous posts, you can go back and take a look by clicking the links below:
If you are anything at all like me (winter being my least favorite season), you might think coming up with this list was rather difficult. After all, what could there possibly be to make the all-too-many dull, dark, dreary days of the season enjoyable? Even with grandchildren?
You might just be surprised!
Consider the following (indoor and outdoor) fun!
30 Ways to Enjoy the Winter Season with Your Grandchildren
1. Read a book.
When together, curl up with your grandchild in a cozy chair or crawl into a blanket fort to enjoy a favorite book. If distance or social distancing don’t allow for physical togetherness, read together over Facetime or Zoom.
When selecting books to read think about sharing a favorite from your childhood or asking your grandchildren to suggest one of their favorites. And if you simply want to read something new, here’s a great list for helping make the choice.
2. Play board games.
One of my grandchildren’s very favorite things to do, no matter the season, is to play board games. And this grandma couldn’t be happier. In addition to being fun, it draws us together around a table where we can talk and share.
Here are just a few of our favorites: Clue, Uno, Pit, Blokus, Aggravation, Sequence, Spot It, Cootie, and Candy Land.
3. Spend some time in the kitchen.
Make a snack, bake cookies, or cook a meal together. It really does not matter what you are creating. The value is in the togetherness. If your grandchildren are too young to man the stove or oven, let them help “measure” ingredients and stir. With younger children, you can also opt for a no-bake, no cook recipe like trail mix or chocolate no-bake cookies.
4. Move your outdoor activities indoors.
In the spring and summer months, one of the suggestions was to take your indoor activities outside. Now it’s time to do the reverse. Take things that are normally engaged in outside and move them indoors. Spread a sheet and enjoy an indoor picnic on the family room floor. Play indoor hide and seek.
5. Do science experiments.
Kids LOVE science experiments. Science not your thing? Many easy, doable how-tos can be found through a simple Google or Pinterest search. Here’s the link to one by Meaningful Mama to get you started in the meantime.
6. Get their bodies moving.
Turn on some music and dance like no one is watching, dream up your own indoor Olympics competition, follow along with some Zumba YouTube videos, or do some traditional calisthenics.
7. Involve your grandchildren in a project.
My grandkids are always wanting to do a craft or a project. Sometimes we plan the projects ahead, and sometimes we simply pull out some construction paper and glue sticks. Either way, they love it. If you function best with a plan, Google and Pinterest can be helpful.
8. Create your own how-to or music video.
9. Find some upbeat music, turn it up loud, and do the chores – dust, sweep, run the vacuum, or pick up.
10. Build a blanket fort.
11. Thumb wrestle.
12. Make and fly paper airplanes.
If you are unsure of your paper airplane making skills, there are tons of video tutorials on YouTube. Just type “making paper airplanes” into the search box. You can watch the tutorials before your grandkids arrive or make it part of the activity and watch together.
13. Put together a jig saw puzzle.
Make sure you choose one that is age-appropriate for your grandchildren.
14. Build with Legos.
15. Shoe box ice skate.
Have some old empty shoe boxes stashed in the closet? Pull them out and let the kids skate around the house. Feeling brave? Join them!
16. Have a snowball fight – inside!
During a visit a couple of winters ago, my grandchildren and I were talking snow. But there wasn’t any! So… we dug into the stack of scrap paper grandpa keeps us supplied with and started making snowballs. I have to say that this has become one of our absolute favorite ways to spend some time together. Nearly every time the kids walk in the door, they want to have a snowball fight. I will admit to becoming a bit tired of making snowballs so frequently. Our solution? We found a huge plastic container to keep them in and just replace the snowballs as needed.
17. Play non-board games.
Remember Simon Says, Twenty Questions, and I Spy with My Little Eye? What about the old School on the Stairs game?
School on the Stairs: The game where the “students” sit on the bottom step and the “teacher” stands before them with some small object in her hand. The teacher places her hands behind her back and hides the object in one hand, brings her hands out in front of the students, and the students take turns guessing which hand the object is in. If the guess is correct, the student is “promoted” by moving up a single step. If the guess is incorrect, the student remains on the current step. First student to the top wins.
18. Visit a library (weather and social distancing permitting).
19. Create a masking tape road/city/track.
One of our very favorite wintertime indoor activities around here is the making of masking tape roads. Whether weekly with the grandchildren I babysit regularly or as a special activity with those who are only able to visit occasionally, a bucket of cars and roll of masking tape are standard fare. It’s great for encouraging creativity and keeping the interest of kids of all ages. Here’s a peek at building a road with masking tape for a little inspiration.
20. Play in the snow.
There are so many ways to have some fun in the snow. Build a snowman. Make snow angels. Construct a fort of snow. Initiate a good, old snowball fight. Go sledding or snowshoeing. Whatever you choose, just be sure to bundle up!!
21. Go ice skating.
22. Paint snow graffiti.
Get your creatives outside by encouraging them to paint the snow. All you need is some food coloring, water, and a few small spray bottles. Make your snow spray paint by filling your spray bottles with water and adding a few drops of food color to each. Using red, blue, and yellow, keep adding drops until you reach the desired intensity of color. Your grandkids can make more colors as they paint by mixing the primary colors in the spray bottles. If you prefer, bowls and paintbrushes can be used instead of spray bottles.
23. Send your grandchildren on a treasure hunt.
Here’s another fun and creative use for your food coloring. Use it to create frozen “gems” for your grandkids to find in the backyard. Fill an ice cube tray with water. Add a couple of drops of food coloring to each “cube,” and place the tray in the freezer. Once frozen, you will have ice cubes that look like precious gems. Hide the gems around your yard and let your grandkids go on a treasure hunt.
24. Shovel snow.
If your grandchildren are old enough, have them join you in shoveling the sidewalk or driveway of an elderly neighbor or the new parents down the street.
25. Introduce your grandchildren to plogging.
Plogging is picking up litter as you jog. Of course, you will need appropriate winter clothing, some gloves, and a trash bag for putting the collected litter in.
26. Make a winter bonfire.
27. Hold a photo shoot.
28. Create a winter scavenger hunt.
29. Build a birdhouse/feed the birds.
30. Plan your springtime garden.
A little bit of something for outdoor winter adventures or staying inside where it’s warm and dry!
What ideas can you add to our list?