Even if you are warm indoors thanks to Econo Air this winter, it’s a good time to encourage children to spend some extra time outdoors doing some winter activites. We have compiled a list of fun activities to enjoy this beautiful time of year!

1. Create a Nature Book: Grab a camera, colored pencils, glue and a notebook and explore nature. Have kids write down observations and draw/ take pictures of trees and animals they see. Maybe you can even make up a creative story about the things you’ve come across together.

2. Evening Hike: All you need is a flashlight or headlamp, and warm winter clothing. Get the family together and take a night hike around the neighborhood. End off the walk with a game of flash-light tag in the backyard!

3. Snow Art: Take your craft time outdoors with snow painting! All you need is some food colouring, water, and a spray bottle! Here are set of instructions to make snow paint.

4. Snow Sports: Set up some nets and get a soccer ball out, play some snow-tackle football, or set up the bases for soccer-baseball. Just because it is winter doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy summer sports in a different way!

5. Snow Animals: What’s your favourite animal? Challenge yourself to make that animal in the snow – whether it’s a penguin, lion, or alligator! You could even use some snow paint to spruce it up!

6. Wandering Winnipeg: Take the family out to visit some of the great places in Winnipeg that encourage outdoor activities, like FortWhyte Alive, the Forks, or Assiniboine Park (to name a few).

7. Build a Bird Feeder: Make some bird feeders together (with recycled materials from around the house), and quietly watch from across the yard as our little feathered friends enjoy! Here is a guide to make bird feeders with orange peels!

8. Icy Wonderland: Take your children over to your local playground and enjoy your child’s favorite summer space transformed by snow and ice. Remind your children to be safe around the ice and enjoy!

9. S’more fun in Winter: These camping classics aren’t just for summer! Start up your backyard fireplace and roast those marshmallows, while enjoying some hot chocolate.

10. The Classics: Take the whole family out to your local park, rink, or hill for some good old ice skating, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, or tobogganing!

Why are activities like these important?

It’s a way to get children out and active! Leading concerns over childhood obesity are physical inactivity and too much time in front of screens. Making physical activity a regular part of a child’s day can be challenging. Too many children have replaced outdoor play with sedentary activities and they are also involved in a lot more deskbound downtime, doing homework and studying.

Encouraging children to get outside and play is much easier in the summer. The difficulty is to get children to be outside and active all year long. Too often we use the snow and cold as an excuse to stay inside. Parents should try to arrange as many opportunities as possible for children be active before school, after school and during weekends. When exercise is fun, children are more willing to take part. Lead by example, be creative, mix up your activities, and make it time for the whole family to enjoy!