Winter is a time of cold and snow that can be a difficult time for many kids to get their proper amounts of exercise. Unlike warm summers and springs, kids can’t always play a wide variety of sports. They often get bored making the same old snowman or having endless snowball fights. Even worse, in the winter, the weather may get too extreme for kids to even go outside. However, there are a few winter games for kids that can be played inside during these extreme cold periods and many structured outdoor games that can test their athletic skills.
Playing any outdoor game requires wearing a proper amount of winter clothing, including boots, gloves, hats, thick winter jackets, and even snow pants. Play time should be limited depending on how cold it is outside.
Fun Indoor and Outdoor Winter Games
Ice fishing doesn’t have to be an outdoor activity
Ice fishing is a winter activity that requires standing on top of frozen lakes in warm fish shanties. This outdoor activity has ice fishers cut holes in the ice and dangle their line inside to catch fish. For younger children, this type of activity may be dangerous or difficult for them due to the cold or the risks of breaking ice. Luckily, there are ways to let kids do ice fish indoors and make it a fun winter game. All you need is a blue sheet, dowels, sticks, eye hole hangers, string and clothes pins.
The ice is made by screwing two eye hole hangers into the wall, tying the string tightly through the eye hole hangers and throwing the blue sheet over top. The kids can then tie a string to their dowel and tie a clothing pin to the other end of the string to create their fishing bowl. Parents stand on the other side of the sheet with a bucket that contains either small toy fish or other fun prizes. The parents attach the clothes pin to the prize and tug the string. The kid can then reels in his prize. This is great for birthday parties in the winter.
Hidden Snow Flag tests kids’ physical endurance and cleverness
This hidden snow flag winter game is played outside. It has kids running, hiding and searching through stacks of snow looking for a white flag. A white flag is tied to the end of a brown stick and given to one of the children. The starting child should be picked randomly by drawing sticks or playing rock, paper, scissors. The rest of the kids stay in the house while the starting child goes outside. The child hides his flag somewhere in the back yard (with adult supervision). The flag can be hidden by snow hills but not completely buried.
After the first child is done, he comes in and the rest of the kids go out and try to find the flag. Their efforts are timed on a stop watch. When one of the children finds the flag, the stop watch is stopped and the time written down. Each child is timed on how long it takes the kids to find their flag. The kid whose flag took the longest to find is the winner.
Unwrap the Gift, an indoor game, can get kids even more excited for Christmas
Winter is a time that many children get excited about due to Christmas and all the presents they will unwrap. Playing this winter game, can help kids get in the Christmas spirit even earlier. Several small gifts, such as candy or small toys are placed in small cardboard boxes and wrapped up in at least 10 or 12 layers of wrapping paper. This should be done before the children come to the party so that they can’t see the gifts.
The children then sit into a circle. One of the children is handed a present. She pulls off the wrapping paper and passes it to the kid on her right. He then removes a layer of wrapping paper and hands it to the next child. This continues until the last layer is taken off. The child who opens it gets to keep the present and sits out the rest of the game. Game play continues until each child has opened a present for themselves.
Jumping snow hurdles, active winter fun for children
Jumping snow hurdles can keep kids physically active in the cold lazy months of winter. A series of small snowballs should be made and arranged into a race course. These snowballs should be no bigger than a soccer ball or basketball. The route should be circular, like a real track in order to emulate real hurdles.
The kids then take turns running through the track and jumping the hurdles to find the fastest and best hurdler of the group. Alternately, the route can be more complex, including twists and turns and can be used for a spirited game of follow the leader. Cooperative games are often more fun for very young children and this can be a great cooperative game for the winter.
There are many other types of fun winter games to play with children. There are winter crafts, such as cutting snowflakes or making cotton ball snowmen. Snowball throwing distance contests as well as snowball size rolling contests are all fun kids ideas that can be modified in any way.