Wednesday, February 2, 2011

5 things to do with a snowed in toddler

The roads outside are icy. The snow is still falling. Daddy's going to be home late from work. The kids are driving us batty! What are we supposed to do with our toddlers when we're snowed in? Here are a few ideas.

1. Have a pajama dance party: Stay in your warm PJ's, crank the music up, and bust out your best moves. Break out your music instruments, kazoos, shakers, and noise makers and play along with the music as you dance.

2. Play in the snow (inside!): Fill a large baking dish or plastic tub with snow. If you live anywhere in the midwest at the present moment, you probably don't even have to step a foot outside to reach enough snow to put in your pan! Place the pan on a tiled area, and have towels handy. Provide spoons, toy cars, measuring cups, and other fun objects for your child to bury, dig, drive, and build in the snow!

3. Read snowy books online: Visit TumbleBooks for illustrated interactive books online. Do a search on the website for "snow" and many weather relevant stories will come up for you to enjoy with your child. Many libraries now have the option of downloading books or have audio books on their website. Ask your librarian, or go to your local library's website!

4. Bake cookies: Let your little one scoop and pour ingredients into the mixer. Count the number of "scoops" of sugar, flour, etc you put in. Describe how you are cracking the egg, and what you are doing. Give your child a small dallop of cookie dough to touch and manipulate (their hands can be washed, remember!) talk to them about how gooey it is.

5. Corn meal shapes: spread a thin layer of corn meal, bread crumbs, flour, corn starch, or even their favorite flavor of pudding (remember, their hands can be washed!!!!) on the bottom of a baking sheet. You want to use the kind that has a rim around the entire sheet. Use your fingers to draw shapes, squiggles, letters, and pictures in the pan. It can be smoothed out and reused as many times as your toddler wants!

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