Winter officially begins December 21, and we know you might miss some indoor and group activities you’ve enjoyed in past years. But even if you’re socially distancing to keep you and your loved ones safe, you can still find many ways to enjoy the winter season with the family.
CHECK OUT THESE 40 FAMILY WINTER ACTIVITIES
TO ENJOY IN OR AROUND THE HOME!
- Build a snowman
Have a snowman challenge with your family or neighbors. Give out prizes for the most creative and best-looking snow person.
- Have a movie marathon
Watch your favorite movies from your childhood and introduce them to your kids. Or try an ‘Everyone’s Favorite Movie’ marathon. Each member of the family selects their favorite film to watch in a day-long marathon. Whip up some popcorn and fun treats and snuggle up together!
- Make a blizzard snow globe
If you’re looking for a way to get creative, try making a wintry blizzard in a jar. Creating mason jar snow globes can be done in a matter of minutes with just a few materials.
- Go ice skating
Though the ice rinks may be closed, you can try building your own backyard ice rink!
- Admire local holiday decorations and lights
Some people go all out during the holidays to decorate their home. Go for a family walk or drive and try to find the best house in your neighborhood. Pack some popcorn and turn on holiday tunes for the ride!
- Make snowman pancakes
Making snowman pancakes is a hands-on activity that you can do with early risers. If you’re the cooking type, check out these hot winter breakfast ideas.
- Learn about your family tree
Gather the whole family together and learn about your shared history. Call or video chat grandparents and relatives tell stories about their childhoods. This engages both kids and extended family and forges a deeper generational connection. You can even write down their stories to pass down to future generations.
Here is a fillable family tree template for kids!
- Take a winter hike
Explore a nearby park. Use it as a learning opportunity by looking for animal tracks, taking pictures, collecting items you find, and making a collage. Research the items you pick up or photograph and include their descriptions in your final piece.
- Make a winter wreath
Try making your own winter wreath! Hang it on the front door or over your fireplace. This serves as both a fun activity and a way to spruce up the house for the holidays. Wreathes are also a great gift idea.
- Build a fort
If weather allows, snow forts are a great way to get out of the house, get some exercise, and inspire little imaginations. For a warmer option, use pillows and blankets to make a fort in the living room! Challenge each other to make the best fort and have a cozy slumber party.
- Play board games
Dig out your pile of board games and challenge each other to Clue, Candy Land or a good ol’ fashioned Checkers tournament.
- Do a good deed
Devote an entire day to doing good deeds. Help out at your local food bank, volunteer to walk dogs at your local animal shelter, or shovel an elderly neighbor’s driveway. But first, look up any relevant COVID-19 restrictions for your local volunteer organizations.
- Have a DIY spa day
Create your own face masks, lotions, and soaps to use for a DIY spa day. Here are some easy body scrub recipes for a fun and relaxing day at the “spa.”
- Make your own Christmas tree ornaments
Use some clear, plastic ornaments to get crafty with your kids. Choose from various craft materials, like glow-in-the-dark beads and puffy paint, to make one of these DIY ornaments.
- Go tobogganing
Find the best hill in your area and go tobogganing! Don’t forget to bring hot chocolate in a thermos to warm up later.
- Warm up around a campfire
If your city allows, set up a backyard fire pit and start a winter campfire, complete with s’mores and scary stories. The sound of the fire crackling is enough to make it worthwhile.
- Try cross-stitching
Work alone or as a family to make some beautiful cross-stitch art for holiday decorations or gifts.
- Make paper snowflakes
Bring the wintery wonderland inside with paper snowflakes! Try adding some food coloring for a tie-dye effect or use colored construction paper.
- Go snow tubing or sledding
Hit the neighborhood hills with your little ones and enjoy an outdoor adventure sure to burn off some energy!
- Bake cookies
Pull the family together to make your favorite cookie recipe. Or ask friends and family members for their favorite cookie recipe and try it out. If you don’t have any, then start your own family cookie traditions!
- Make a family scrapbook or time capsule
Put treasured mementos such as photos, ticket stubs and postcards in a shoebox or photo album. Hide it somewhere in the house or in the backyard. If your family is feeling adventurous, take a drive to your favorite place and hide it there.
- Have a PJ day
Enjoy an entire day and evening in your pajamas… really shake things up and have breakfast for dinner!
- Make monster gloves
Prepare your little ones for the cold with these super cute monster gloves. The kids can decorate them however they want using felt, pompoms, googly eyes, and more!
- Dance it out
Encourage the kids to put on their favorite outfits or costumes and perform a show to their favorite songs. Don’t forget to pull out your camera to record their performances… these will be memories you’ll want for the future.
- Donate blankets and coats
Giving back is always important, especially during the colder months. Make your own blanket by using a chunky knit blanket tutorial or buy a new one for people in your community who need some extra warmth. Be sure to ask family and friends to pitch in and give winter coats and blankets, too. Then go together and donate them
- Make a bird feeder
Make a simple homemade bird feeder using pine cones, peanut butter, birdseed and a little bit of string. Or try out this bird feeder craft, then hang them up and spend an afternoon bird watching. See if you can identify which birds come to visit!
Here are a couple easy to use bird guide apps to download:
- Decorate a gingerbread house
Try your hand at a creative gingerbread house idea for a sweet, seasonal decoration that you can make with your kids. To simplify things, try using one of these gingerbread kits.
- Send a holiday card
Send some cheerful holiday greetings to your loved ones with one of these personalized Christmas card ideas or a New Year’s card. Make greeting cards for residents of a local nursing home to send holiday cheer for those missing loved ones during the pandemic.
- Set up a scavenger hunt
Whether you choose to scavenge inside or out, it makes no difference! Set up clues for the kids to follow to find the treasure (maybe it leads to another activity on this list). Or have the kids set up their own scavenger hunts.
- Make homemade caramel popcorn
Try this easy homemade caramel corn recipe! It is super yummy and easy to make!
- Make New Year’s resolutions
Gather everyone together and talk about goals for 2021. Then creatively display those goals around the house. Here are a few ideas if your family needs help with writing resolutions.
- Treat the family with a hot cocoa bar
Whip up one of these creative drinks, and build a hot cocoa bar with whipped cream, marshmallows, sprinkles, cherries and everything else to make for a fun night of indoor sipping.
- Practice yoga together
Get your family’s zen on with a kid-friendly yoga video and practice as a family.
- Take a photo a day during the winter
This is a good way to document family moments. You could also put them all together in a slide show or video to look back on later.