Keeping your toddlers busy for more than a few minutes at a time can be tricky, but throw in cold and yucky winter weather and the task can suddenly seem daunting. If you are in need of some ideas on how to keep your toddler busy in the coming months, look no further. Here’s a list of 100 things to do with your toddler in the winter.
#1. Build a Fort
#2. Have a Snowman Scavenger Hunt
#3. Read Stories in the Dark
#4. Throw a Toddler Play Date Party
Spruce up your weekly playdate, by making it more of a party. Prepare tasty, but cute snacks, while playing a few, fun party games. Maybe even turn it into a slumber party if you are feeling brave!
#5. Blow Bubbles in Freezing Temperatures
#6. Visit the Zoo
Yes, you can still visit the zoo in the winter! Many animals stay on display, even in the chilly weather. You may even notice slightly different behavior, than in the summer months!
#7. Bake Desserts for the Neighbors
Kids love measuring, pouring and stirring ingredients. They can also learn a great lesson about acts of kindness, when delivering your freshly baked goods, next door!
#8. Go for a Walk
When the roads are too snowy to enjoy a nice stroller ride consider pulling your toddler behind you on a sled!
#9. Pretend Beach Play in the Bath
Transform your ordinary bath time into pretend beach play! Get a mini beach ball, help your toddler float on their back, and maybe even set a few towels down for extra, intentional splashing!
#10. Visit a Museum
You may not want to take your toddler to your local art museum, but if you have a children’s museum nearby that would be the perfect place to spend a winter afternoon!
#11. Go Fishing!
Make your own indoor fishing area by attaching magnets to fish-shaped cutouts, and even your very own kid-sized fishing pole (tie a short string to a stick, then attach a magnet to the string).
#12. Paint the Snow
Add food coloring to squirt bottles filled with cool water. Then bundle up and head outside, to watch your little artist create a snowy masterpiece.
#13. Have a Fake Snowball Fight
If your kiddo is looking forward to a snowball fight, but it’s just too cold and windy outside, bring the snowball fight inside! If you cannot find faux snowballs in the store or don’t feel like making them yourself, simply settle for cotton balls!
#14. Create a Felt Snowman
You’ve likely heard of felt Christmas tree cutouts to decorate. Why not craft a giant snowman out of felt, and let your little one decorate it with felt cutouts. Think tophat, sunglasses, stick arms, various smiles and buttons!
#15. Create a Slime Bag
When you’re a parent, slime is inevitable. Fortunately, slime is just as fun for toddlers when it’s squished around in a bag, as it is oozing between fingers.
#16. Library Story Times
Check with your local library to see what their toddler storytime schedule is like. Some libraries will even send you off with story related crafts to do at home!
#17. Make Paper Snowflakes
What a perfect way to help your toddler perfect their scissor skills! As a bonus, make your snowflakes out of coffee filters and dip them in colored water for a pretty design.
#18. Introduce a Board Game
There are plenty of toddler-friendly board games out there. Perhaps a little Hi Ho Cherry-O! Would it be a hit with your youngster?
#19. Puffy Paint Snow Craft
Mix together equal parts shaving cream and glue. Add a bit of glitter and you will soon have sparkly, snow-like puffy paint to be used in snowy artwork.
#20. Make Snowflake Garland
Cut out snowflake or snowman shapes, and have your toddler glue cotton balls to them. Then string them for a cute, homemade strand of garland.
#21. Go Sledding
If you don’t like to travel in the wintertime, shovel the snow from your driveway into the same area, and make your own toddler-sized sledding hill!
#22. Shaving Cream Writing
What’s white, fluffy, and room temperature? Shaving Cream! Your child is going to love having warm hands while playing in shaving cream.
#23. Indoor Hopscotch
Create various shapes on the floor out of painter’s tape. Next, have your child hop on each shape, as you call out the name of each one.
#24. Make Homemade Wrapping Paper
Take a roll of heavy paper and let your child stamp it with sponges and paint. Your family members are going to love receiving gifts in the special paper!
#25. Play “I Spy”
Playing “I Spy” is a great way to pass the time, while also helping your toddler learn shapes and colors.
#26. Craft Ornaments
Use clear, plastic ornaments, popsicle sticks, clay, or even find a recipe for cinnamon Christmas tree ornaments that are sure to add a little more beauty to the Christmas tree this year.
#27. Finger Paint
You can never go wrong finger painting, no matter what time of year it is!
#28. Living Room Camp Out
Set up a tent in the living room and spend the night in it!
#29. Make Christmas Cards
Not sure what to do with all of your kiddo’s drawings? Add sweet greetings to them and deliver them to neighbors, homeless shelters, and nursing homes.
#30. Sign Up for Toddler Gymnastics
Gymnastics is a great way to help toddlers burn some energy. Best of all, it’s indoors, where it’s nice and warm.
#31. Make Homemade Instruments
Recycle empty oatmeal containers, cereal boxes, and paper towel tubes into musical instruments.
#32. Have a Puppet Show
Have a puppet show! Bonus points if you make your own puppets out of socks, or brown paper bags.
#33. Play Red Light, Green Light
Red Light, Green Light is the perfect game to help teach colors, and work on those listening skills! Take turns being the stoplight, and telling the other players to go (green light), and stop (red light).
#34. Create Play-Doh Snowmen!
Not everyone gets snow where they live. That’s when Play Doh can come in handy to make the perfect little snowman!
#35. Plant Seeds Inside
It may be too cold for seeds to germinate outside, but you can plant them indoors. Your toddler is going to love watering them, and watching their plants grow.
#36. Make Shadow Puppets
Grab a flashlight, flip off the lights and make silly shadow puppets on the wall.
#37. Play Hide and Seek
Take turns hiding and seeking, or perhaps even hide a stuffed animal, and have your toddler hunt around for it.
#38. Make Dirt Pudding
If you are looking for a fun dessert, have your child help you mix up a box of chocolate pudding. Then let him sprinkle crushed cookies on top, and even pick out gummy worms to set on the “dirt.”
#39. Decorate Cookies
Decorating cookies can be messy, but what isn’t when you have a toddler! Tip: Store bought cookies and frosting are a total time saver on this one!
#40. Make an Obstacle Course
Use furniture, blankets, and pillows to create an obstacle course for your little one to crawl through.
#41. Pop Bottle Bowling
Save those empty pop bottles for a fun game of bowling with your toddler!
#42. Play a Matching Game
You don’t need to have the game of Memory to practice matching things. The clean laundry basket surely has some socks that need matching!
#43. Indoor Car Wash
When you can’t have fun with the hose inside, try having an indoor Hot Wheels car wash. Fill up a tub with soapy water, and “dirty” cars. Just remember to lay a towel or two down, first!
#44. Make Kinetic Sand
Pretend you are at the beach with a tub full of homemade kinetic sand, made with sand, cornstarch, and a little bit of cooking oil.
#45. Color a Cardboard Box
Have your child use their imagination, and help them turn a cardboard box into a house, space shuttle or car.
#46. Invent a New Game
Toddlers are great at making up their own rules. Turn some of their rules into a new game that the two of you can play!
#47. Build a Race Track/Course
Get the painters tape back out for this one, and make a winding track on the floor. It’s perfect for Hot Wheels cars and even ponies!
#48. Have a Living Room Drive In
Instead of lounging on the couch for movie night, prop up some pillows or blankets in a laundry basket for your little one to lounge in.
#49. Make Snow Ice Cream
Did you know that you can make ice cream out of fresh snow? It’s true! And it’s delicious! Give it a try!
#50. Stack Blocks
Have a contest to see who can stack the blocks the highest, before it topples over!
#51. Do a Puzzle
Work on a puzzle together. And then another. And then another!
#52. Play the Floor is Lava Game
Couch pillows and cushions make the perfect stones to jump onto when you don’t want to step on the hot lava! Even toddlers will get enjoyment playing.
#53. Have a Dance Party
Turn on the holiday music and throw a living room dance party!
#54. Visit Extended Family
Families are often incredibly busy during the warmer months, so use the chillier winter months to make sure and visit your extended family members, that you haven’t seen in awhile!
#55. Use Walkie Talkies
If your little one hasn’t experienced walkie talkies yet, they are in for a treat!
#56. Indulge With an Indoor Picnic
Throw your picnic blanket down on the living room floor, and enjoy a nice, warm, inside picnic.
#57. Make Handprint Gifts
There are tons of handprint gift ideas for parents and grandparents. Think about making handprint art on canvases, tote bags, pillow cases or t-shirts.
#58. Play House
Instead of being the one who gets to have the rules, let your toddler play mom or dad for a bit. Pull out the dress up clothes, and tea cups, and have a tea party while you’re at it.
#59. Paint With Pom Poms
Use craft pom poms, with paint, as stamps. Keep it a little less messy by using clothespins as handles for the pom poms.
#60. Visit a Trampoline Park
If you have a trampoline park or indoor kids playground nearby then wintertime is the perfect time to visit.
#61. Play Superheroes
Make capes, decorate masks, and decide upon the best superhero powers.
#62. Make Snow Angels
This is an age old activity that never gets old! Plop down in the snow and flap away!
#63. Play Simon Says
Simon says, “Play Simon Says!”
#64. Balloon Toss
Tossing a balloon is a wonderful way to work on hand eye coordination, while also having a blast.
#65. Look at Snowflakes Closely
Use a magnifying glass to help your little one see some of the beautiful details in sparkly snowflakes.
#66. Explore the Park
Many people forget that the park can be just as fun when it is snowcovered!
#67. Craft a Bird Feeder
Birds can use a little extra help finding food in snowy areas. Create a bird feeder out of clean, old milk cartons, and let your toddler decorate the outside with markers or paint.
#68. Paint a Birdhouse
Well, if you are going to make a bird feeder, why not go a step further and paint a simple wooden bird house. They can often be found for reasonable prices at your local craft store.
#69. Visit Nursing Homes
Folks in nursing homes love visitors, and what could be better than hearing a toddler giggle?
#70. Embark on a Winter Nature Hunt
Nature looks a lot different during those winter months! Be on the lookout for all sorts of items like pine needles and pine cones!
#71. Go Out for Ice Cream
Cold weather certainly will not stop a toddler from devouring a bowl of ice cream!
#72. Have a Crazy Hair Day
Get some gel or spray in hair color for a crazy hair day.
#73. Make Stained Glass Art
Use contact paper and ripped up pieces of tissue paper to create beautiful stained glass-like artwork.
#74. Build Lego Towers
Use Mega Blocks or Lego Duplos to build giant towers to knock down.
#75. Sink or Float
Have a fun sink or float science experiment with various toys and a tub of water.
#76. Have a Winter Snow Shoot
Photos of your toddler playing in the snow are for sure going to become family favorites!
#77. Stop by the Pet Store
Get your fix on cute puppies and other sweet, furry animals at the pet store, Just be sure to make it clear to your toddler that you are just visiting, and playing with the puppies.
#78. Deliver Necessities to the Local Shelter
It’s never too early to teach the gift of giving! Gather old blankets, coats, and warm clothing to deliver to a local shelter.
#79. Have a Mommy (or Daddy) and Me Date
Instead of going to your usual places for errands, plan a day to go somewhere new and fun with your little love.
#80. Make a Tape Spider Web
#81. Go Out For Morning Donuts
Instead of feasting on a boring breakfast at home, take your toddler out for fresh donuts!
#82. Take a Train Ride
Trains are often a fascination for little ones. Why not hop aboard a real train for a ride?
#83. Watch the Airplanes
Head over to the airport and spend a while watching the airplanes come in and take off of the runway.
#84. Create Video Clips
Toddlers love watching themselves. Pull out your phone at record your kiddo playing, or better yet, let them record a video.
#85. Build a Gingerbread House
Whether store bought or homemade, this is going to be a tasty and fun activity!
#86. Treat the Mailman
Prepare a cup of hot cocoa and cookies. Then have your toddler help you deliver it to the mailman on a chilly day.
What toddler doesn’t love fire trucks? Stop by your local fire station for a tour of the living quarters and trucks.
#88. Toss Paper Airplanes
Decorate and fold paper airplanes to toss.
#89. Go to the Pool
Many hotels will allow non-staying guests access to their pool for a small fee.
#90. Catch Snowflakes
Have your toddler hold out his mitten or tongue, as he tries to catch snowflakes
#91. Go See a Movie
Early viewings are the best times to take toddlers who may be antsy and a little noisy!
#92. Make a Snow Castle
It’s just like making a sand castle at the beach, only you are making a castle out of snow, in your yard!
#93. Fly Swatter Golf
Use a fly swatter and small balloon or ball for an indoor round of golf.
#94. Hot Wheels Race
Make a small ramp out of a piece of cardboard. Draw road lines on it, and let your little one race Hot Wheels cars down it.
#95. Play House
Let your toddler make you a pretend lunch, hang up a mini clothesline to hang laundry, and let them read you stories for a change!
#96. Teach a New Language
Introduce a little bit of Spanish or American Sign Language, if you haven’t already.
#97. Have a Fashion Show
What could be cuter than your toddler prancing around in mom or dad’s adult sized clothing?
#98. Go on a Flashlight Scavenger Hunt
Turn off the lights and have a fun scavenger hunt in the dark!
#99. Bury Toys in the Snow
Bury a few toys in the snow, and watch as your child tries to excavate each of them.
#100. Tube Tunnel Maze
Tape a few toilet paper and paper towel rolls to the wall, and make a tunnel maze to drop pom poms through.
These 100 things to do with your toddler in the winter will give you so many ideas for creating fun during the upcoming cold season. What is your favorite winter activity that is toddler-friendly?