Winter play ideas for outdoors


Activities for Cold Days

  • Go on a nest hunt. With all the leaves off the trees, nests are much easier for children to spot. Look high and low for bird nests.
  • Search for and collect the colours of winter. These can be used indoors at the art or sensory tables.
  • Build forts and cubby houses!
  • Decorate bare trees with paper snowflakes, coloured balloons, streamers, wind chimes.
  • Plant bulbs indoors – hyacinths.
Sourced from

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Activities for Rainy Days

  • Put on gumboots and splash in puddles. Encourage children to look at their reflection in the puddle.
  • Bring paintbrushes outside and use the water from the puddles to paint on the fences and paths.
  • Talk about how water flows: down gutters, along creek beds, down hills, down to where puddles form.
  • Bring out plastic tubes for water flow experiments – what else can travel down the tubes?
  • Incorporate water play into the sandpit.

 Activities for Snowy Days

  • Catch snowflakes on black construction paper and use a magnifying glass to get a good look at them. 
  • Catch snowflakes on your tongue. Ask: How many can you catch?, or What does it feel like when it melts?
  • Identify each child's footprints in the snow (stand in a row and then have everyone take a few steps).
  • Use sand play toys, such as buckets, shovels and trucks, to shape the snow, just as you would sand.

Layer up and get outdoors to enjoy the fresh air!

Sarah Cameron