February 16, 2018 12:30 pm Kid-Friendly Indoor Winter Activities for Mind and Body by Jenny Wise
When the hot cocoa runs out, kids and adults alike can start to get a little stir crazy during the cold, dreary winter months. The sun sets almost as soon as you get home from work—leaving you and the kids to find ways to stay active and engaged inside the house. While this might seem like an insurmountable challenge, especially when it snows all weekend, it can actually be quite creative and stimulating to focus on indoor activities.
Don’t let the cooler temperatures freeze out your family fun. Here are a few ideas for getting excited about fitness, science and art from the comfort of the warm indoors.
What better way to make sure you don’t lose out on exercise during the winter than by learning to dance. Not only does dancing have powerful physical and mental health benefits for children, but so does listening to music. Dancing, a form of aerobic exercise, is a fun way to build muscle, correct posture, increase balance and improve coordination.
But what you may not know is that dancing—specifically listening to music—can help extend attention, reduce anxiety and create a happy, positive mood, which is a big plus during the winter when some people, children included, are at a higher risk for depression.
Create a fun, vibrant dance studio right in your own living room! With free dance videos online or on TV—both specially designed for kids—you can make a big impact on your kids’ physical and mental health. You can get even more excited by adding a few elements to your home theatre system to improve the experience, but be sure to do your research before you run out and buy a new setup.
What better way to pass the cold winter day than to turn your kitchen table into a science lab. You can combine fun and education for kids of all ages to expand learning, while also reducing the boredom that can come from cabin fever. You don’t have to get too complex with it; keep it simple with an experiment that combines food coloring, vegetable oil and water in a glass to create homemade lava. If you do want to take it to the next level, such as showing older children how chemical reactions work, you can put on your gloves and goggles for an experiment in making elephant toothpaste.
Science-based activities take your children’s minds beyond memorizing content. Using their imagination they can tap the process of science by asking questions and analyzing results.
For your little pint-sized Picassos you can use the winter lull to help get their creative juices flowing. With free online drawing and painting classes you can support your child’s talent, occupy their hands and help them develop technology skills without busting your budget on high-dollar art classes. Keep them motivated by setting up an art gallery in your living room and hosting an opening night reception for your friends and family.
Winter may be cold and icy, but it can also be beautiful. Consider asking your child to draw or paint winter scenes and use it as a teaching tool for understanding animal hibernation, plant life cycles and changing weather patterns.
As you try to occupy your kids when they’re stuck inside during the winter, the most important thing to remember is that this is a fantastic opportunity to spend more time with them. Getting to know your children is more than finding out about their likes and dislikes. You can bond with them while dancing, laugh together while making lava and explore the beauty of art.
Learn more about Jenny Wise of specialhomeeducator.com