Snow Day! 15 Fun Activities to Entertain When Class is Canceled

Filed under: Activities: Babies, Activities: Toddlers & Preschoolers, Activities: Big Kids, Activities: Tweens, Activities: Teens

Plan fun activities to make the most of a snow day. Credit: MGShelton, Flickr

Snow days are a cause of celebration for kids, but can pose problems for parents. There's no need to worry: When classes are canceled, a little creativity and smart planning can turn a snow day from what would have been a 24-hour cartoon-a-thon into a fun, hassle-free family-filled adventure.

Here are 15 ways to make the most of a snowy day.

1. If the snow hasn't started falling yet, make a quick trip to the dollar or toy store and stock up on a few surprises. The newness of a few inexpensive toys can hold boredom at bay.

2. Rotate board games so kids don't they don't become "bored" games and bring out hidden toys to makes old ones seem brand new. Every few months (or at the end of each season), store some of the family games and toys away for a surprising unveiling later.
3. Look around your house for unused or underused craft items. Pull those out alongside the glue, paint, scissors and paper. Nothing says "entertainment" more than magazines to rip up, cardboard toilet paper rolls, discarded buttons and cloth trimmings. Sit down with your kids and see how creative you can be.

4. Organize and assign an art project with a theme. Search online for ideas.

5. Enjoy the snow. Dress warmly and explore the neighborhood. Involve the kids in finding different things on your block. See if you can find animal tracks or explore the science behind snow and ice.

6. Stick closer to home. Use food coloring to paint the snow, go sledding, make snow angels or build snow critters.

7. Create a snow-day memory. Take photos of the day's activities and print them from your home computer. At the end of the day, give each child a piece of paper and some of the photos to create a collage of the day's events. Taking photos of activities gives you goals throughout the day, and the collage gives them a keepsake.

8. Plan an indoor picnic with hand-drawn invitations. Use food from your pantry, or, before the snow sets in, stock up on special treats.

9. Cook the family's favorite meal with help from the kids. Bring out cookbooks and let them help decide what to prepare. Or turn it into a game, choosing only five ingredients for dinner's main dish.

10. Have the kids help bake bread or muffins. No matter what the weather, teaching kids to bake is always a fun project.

11. Make some music together. Put on a favorite CD and teach your children the words. Not a singer? Dance around the room with them. Be silly and watch as it become contagious.

12. Find some household items that double as musical instruments and select a song for your "band" to learn.

13. Design a treasure hunt with clues that will take the kids around the house, searching for hidden household odds and ends. Tuck a measuring cup on a bookshelf or hide a book under the rug. The winner earns a piece of candy or gets to decide what the family plays next. The hunt is the fun, no matter what the results.

14. Pull a children's book off the shelf and create a play. Improvise costumes from clothes in your closet. Practice the play throughout the day and perform the skit after dinner.

15. Get on the computer. Load educational games and let the kids take turns. Meanwhile, you can stick nearby and supervise while putting your feet up with a snowy-day book.

Related: Snow Play for a Snow Day, Snowfall Ice Cream, With Variations

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.