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Indoor Activities for Toddlers

I love getting outdoors all year round, but I completely understand that not everyone shares my excitement about playing in the bitter cold. Once your fingers have thawed and you’ve got yourself a nice mug of hot chocolate, here are some favorite indoor activities to try with your toddler this winter season!

  1. Noodle Necklaces - have the kids paint or decorate pasta before threading it onto the string. Talk about the colors they choose and the action words associated with the activity (ex: paint, glue, apply, dry, wait, choose, thread, push, tie).

  2. Indoor Obstacle Course - grab any spare pillows, cushions, or chairs you can find. Focus on a variety of movements the kids may need to complete the course. Climb up the mountain of cushions, slide down the cardboard slide, crawl under the blanket tunnel… get creative and get moving!

  3. Homemade (and easy!) Cloud Dough - grab a giant bin or clear tub to make some toddler-friendly cloud dough. This soft and squishy alternative to sand will make it feel like an indoor beach trip! Try hiding small toys and objects in the dough and have the kids describe what they find, or have them give you “clues” as you sift through yourself.

  4. Bring the Outdoor Toys In - Have a cool outdoor water table that the kids love in the summer? Bring it indoors! Have the kids brainstorm things to add to the table instead of water - it could be filled with cotton balls, pasta, confetti, you name it. You could still use water if you have a big enough shower or tub. Just throw the kids in their swimsuits and once again you’ve got an indoor beach trip.

  5. Chores - no, really! Toddlers love to imitate the adults in their lives. Fill the kitchen sink with a small amount of soapy water, add some plastic dishes and utensils and the kids will have a blast “washing the dishes”. Turn a wiffleball bat or empty wrapping paper tube into a “mop” or “vacuum” and have the kids zoom around the room cleaning the floors and making vacuum noises. Grab some duster cloths and see who can collect the most dust off the shelves in their room. If you make it seem like a game, the kids will love cleaning the house with you!

These low-prep, low-cost ideas will keep the kids entertained throughout the cold winter months!

It’s important to note that not every play moment needs to include an intentional lesson, but these 5 activities are great ways to keep your kids’ minds engaged while burning a bit of energy.

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